Showing posts with label bibliocrunch. Show all posts
Showing posts with label bibliocrunch. Show all posts

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Writing Trends

What are the current trends in writing? Everybody wants to know.
Writers do know some trends. Their incomes are all over the place or dropping.
The current political situation is seeing dystopian themed books being dusted off. The South by South West film and television festival is currently full of Handmaids from The Handmaids Tale, a book by Margaret Atwood. This book freaked people out when it was first published and seems set to continue if all the articles about the festival handmaids is anything to go by.

The London Book Fair is on* and chat on the floor suggests that Brexit will hit UK publishing scene hard. Also I see on Twitter that it’s not just the Brits who are un-nerved. Several EU countries are facing Brexit calls of their own in upcoming elections.
We are in unsettled times.

The Bookseller talks about the difference between a bestseller and a profitable book. I was surprised to learn that they are not the same thing.

If you have tried to make sense of your publishers royalty statements lately, read Mike Shatzkin’s recent blog on Profit and Loss formulas and how publishers are getting them wrong. Could be some ammo in there for negotiations.

Sacha Black wonders if now is the time to go wide given the current trends of income uncertainty.
The latest Author Earnings report is out, and interesting reading it is too. Here in NZ we recently had our own version of Writer Income surveyed... which was pretty dismal reading. Data Guy has some comments on the NZ situation in English language publishing.

Mike Sahno wrote a guest post on Anne R Allen’s blog about the 5 pieces of bad advice regularly given to literary writers.

Auburn Seal of Bibliocrunch has some rock solid advice if you are spinning around with writing speed trends. Should you write faster or write slower? If you are feeling overwhelmed with everything you should do... set some solid goals.

Dan Blank has some sage advice for figuring out where you should be placing your book, marketing wise... way before you publish it. This is a must read.

Subscription curation is all the rage in children’s publishing according to Publishers Weekly. Publishers are directly helping parents choose wisely along with publishing classroom versions of popular books to get around censorship.

Elizabeth Craig was recently asked why didn’t she sell her books on Etsy. And this sparked a whole new way of looking at writing.

In The Craft Section,

Developing Themes – The midpoint- Sara Letourneau- Bookmark

Using Scrivener – Writer Unboxed

In The Marketing Section,

5 tools every Indie author should use- Frances Caballo- Bookmark!!

To Finish,

Reedsy is a great resource for writers. They often have great infographics... (I’m such a sucker...) However Ricardo has recently been putting together a huge list of writing competitions. Have a look.
And for all those people who want a publisher to look at their work... Catherine Ryan Howard’s 50 easy ways to get a publishing deal will resonate with everyone.

* Don’t forget to check out Alli’s LBF Indie Fringe 24 hour conference. You might just get a jump on some writing trends.


Every month I round up the best of my bookmarked links and put them together with some other goodies. You can join the trendy people and subscribe to my monthly newsletter.Thanks to the lovely people who shouted me a coffee. It is much appreciated.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Deja Vu.

So will 2015 have the flavour of 2014 with the virtual book lockouts, impassioned pleas for support and authors being left the worse for wear in the battle of the publishing behemoths? One of the sobering takeouts for anyone watching is that it is not the publishers bank accounts that get hammered. It is the authors and their careers. For authors to have a book not visible online hurts sales... which means their next book becomes a harder sell, (despite what the publisher might say to the contrary.) This hurts their future earnings/career.

In the children’s publishing world Bologna is the rally cry. The biggest children’s book rights fair in the world and the news is all gelato and where the agents missing bathrooms are on Twitter.  Despite Bathroomgate, everyone is upbeat. The world wants middle grade. Yay. Even middle grade space! I have a drawer full of manuscripts...

Another class action suit has been registered against Author Solutions, which is OWNED by Penguin Random House. And still there is a deafening silence by publishing journalists to expose this company. Could it be that every big publisher has their fingers in this pie...

For the last three years I have been noticing the claim that Book Apps are just around the corner... not the next corner, the one after that. Here it gets stated again in several places this week. (Must be the Bologna effect.) If only we had partnerships... author/ illustrator/ app designer. Maybe the time has come.

The time has come to move on for self publishers says Porter Anderson. In his usual thought provoking way Porter looks at all the arguments around self publishing and how the mindset holds back the author. 
Elizabeth Spann Craig finds out her traditionally published series is at an end. When you know it is time to move on... whole new publishing life coming right up. Take some time to read the comments on these articles. There is lots of extra insight into how these decisions get made.

A couple of years ago... I talked in my blog about an interesting marketing concept; Downloadable e-books on those plastic gift cards as a point of sale display, just right for the impulse purchase at the bookstore counter.  There were several companies looking into producing nifty stands of these for publishers. Another company has joined in making this a marketing reality but with short run cards that will appeal to authors.  

In the Craft Section, (all of these are bookmark worthy)

In the Marketing Section, (Every one of these a book mark post)
Sam Messingham has the article on using Twitter effectively.

Crowdfunded publishing- Jane Friedman

Website of the Week
Not really a website more like a phenomenon!
The Creative Penn or Joanna Penn has made such an impact on sharing her journey in real time as she negotiates new publishing landscapes that it is hard to imagine the blogosphere without her. Her website is packed full of information. She has a popular podcast and her books are best sellers.
Bibliocrunch caught up with her to ask the five important questions  about her publishing journey. And if you check out her latest podcast interview she is talking with an audio marketing expert. It is, as usual, packed full of information and as Joanna acknowledges this is a must for writers to look at with so many car makers enabling in-car podcast radio as their latest feature. 
Bet you didn’t see that coming.

To Finish,
Getting books in libraries is a big thing for Authors. It means visibility, more people reading your work and sales down the track. Now authors are being encouraged to make their Indie e-books available to libraries. Check out the nifty infographic.


Thursday, February 19, 2015

It’s All Subjective

This week I have been mulling over the perfect conference program. This is highly subjective. Why do you go to conferences? Some people say networking. Some say up-skilling in your craft. Some say to learn new approaches to old ideas. That’s my ideal, learning. I’m not into great big crowded rooms where everybody is glad handing and I know no one. So planning the perfect writers conference for me has to have plenty of learning opportunities and meet and greet without being overpowering. We are in the middle of refining our program for Tinderbox2015 and I have a big problem. I want to go to everything!

As I look through this week’s links for you it is amazing how many of them link into something in our conference program.

Passive Guy has linked to two posts this week that have people talking. Do publishers really understand SEO (do you?) and Authorpreneurs. from The Economist which has weighed in saying what authors should be doing regarding their business which is finding influencers and publishers should be publishing celebrity authors to stay afloat. Reading the comments on both those articles is entertaining. And in breaking news Pharrell is writing a series of children’s books... about being HAPPY.

Porter Anderson takes a good long look at publishing terms everyone gets wrong and the implications for planning your writing business. Do you really get royalties if you self publish? And why you need to know the differences.

Publishing Perspectives has an interesting opinion piece about whether agents and publishers want authors that know about the publishing business. Do MFA programs want clued up authors?

Darcy Pattison talks about her last 18 months. This is chock full of information about the decision to Indie Publish and what she has learned. (this is a bookmark post!)

Today was a #MSWL day on Twitter. Agents and Editors write on Twitter what Manuscripts they wish would come across their desks. Type #MSWL in the search bar. If you do query an agent or editor from this, mention the tweet. Another cool search on Twitter is #tenqueries. Agents and Editors going through their slush pile will comment on ten queries live on Twitter and their immediate response. This is a great heads up about what grabs and what doesn’t.

In the Craft section,

Author Biz has a great interview with Editor Shawn Coyne who is working on a story grid book for editors. This is a bookmark post! (and a print out the Storygrid and stick it on your wall post.)

In the Marketing section,

Lindsay Buroker has been sourcing covers from fiverr for short stories - she explains how to do this.

7 must do tactics for promotional tweets. (please don’t spam... the 90/10 rule should apply- thats 90 pieces of interesting stuff for every 10 promotional tweets)

Website of the Week
Bibliocrunch is an interesting hangout. Not only do they host chats on Twitter but they have lots of resources for the Indie Authors.
Here are two of their recent articles- Using Skype to organize a virtual writing groups and

To Finish,
John Green is known for a lot of things that he does well. However today he found out something he doesn’t know well - The quotes from his books. This made for a great confessional post to his brother about how he always assumed that the quote memes were from his books...oops 

If you are interested in finding out more about Tinderbox 2015 - The National Children’s Writers and Illustrators Conference in Wellington, NZ, October 2-5th  send us an Email to 2015tinderbox AT gmail DOT com and we’ll put you on our dedicated mailing list for updates and news.


John Green's confession below.

Tweet from a conversation thread with J K Rowling.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Her Majesty's Voice

I’ve been thinking about Voice lately. 

Voice is that ‘something’ that informs the reader about the style and motivations of the characters without actually being visible on the page.

There is nothing superficial, however, about voice when used in the context of writing. Your writing voice is the deepest possible reflection of who you are. The job of your voice is not to seduce or flatter or make well-shaped sentences. In your voice, your readers should be able to hear the contents of your mind, your heart, your soul.

This is the ‘something’ that writers struggle with. 
Do they have the same voice for every protagonist? Is every book they write in some way autobiographical from their deepest being?  
Ah the big questions. 
If somehow this is come nobody picked the distinctive voice of J K Rowling...after all we have been told by literary critics that she is not much of a writer, using all those adjectives and not writing tightly enough...or did the fact that she had a male pseudonym fudge the fact that it was quite a good story...moved along ok... did everything a detective novel should. The cynics are out saying great PR by her team and now you can only buy the hardcover on eBay at hugely inflated prices. The Passive Guy has a look at the Robert Galbraith (aka JKR)saga.

Porter Anderson has been looking at agent relationships this week. In two articles for Publishing Perspectives he examines the agent/writer relationship now in this Hybrid/Indie revolution. How close can it be? The Agents who have cannily enrolled best selling Indies to manage print deals and the Agents who-have-become -Publishers...He takes a close look at Rogue Reader...and very interesting it is too. 

David Gaughran has sharply criticized particular the RandomPenguin washing of Author Solutions. Author Solutions began as a vanity press that did everything for you at a huge cost. They are facing a class action lawsuit because of some of their questionable practices and you would think that maybe they would pull back...but no. This is a Writer Beware story that will make your writer heart shrivel a little.

The New Yorker has an opinion piece on the decline and fall of the book cover...and Bibliocrunch checks out virtual writing group hangouts using Google and Skype

Chuck Wendig has a distinctive voice...and a distinctive turn of phrase that occasionally makes your hair curl up and spontaneously combust. His latest 25 things post looks at Story Stakes...very good. And a superb little post on ten stupid writer tricks that might actually work.

In Craft,
The character therapist examines an archetype on the therapists couch. These are always interesting.

In Marketing,
From The Book Designer, two great articles, 7 strategies of Blog Marketing and

Amazon Algorithms (this is all the latest on metadata Amazon style - a must read.)

Another Must Read is what this author is doing right across the tech spectrum...his character has taken this the future?

Website to check out,
This list has a solid helpful link for every creative you know...There is literally something for everyone working in the publishing industry here.

To Finish,
One of my favourite adult fiction authors Jenny Crusie (who has a fantastic voice) has written a great post on Sharknado. This film, shown on US cable this week, had my twitter feed fill up with writer reactions. The premise is so off the wall that there are very jealous writers out there wishing they had thought of a tornado that sucks up sharks and dumps them on a town in a hungry and vengeful mood. Jenny writes about high concept, going with your gut, ideas that are so off the wall and the courage a writer has to have to grab something like this and make it work.

I’m out and about around the country next there won’t be a blog post...but by then Twitter will be filled with Royal Baby news and the cynics who don’t just as well I’m taking a break...heheheheh.


Tweet from Agent Jennifer Laughran...talking about MG this week on Twitter. 
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