Showing posts with label children's publishing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label children's publishing. Show all posts

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Breaking The Container

This week in the publishing blogosphere...
If you have any interest in the global publishing world you will be aware of the new VAT rules coming into the EU. This is where the governments of the EU finally get tax off Amazon... or rather Amazon tells all authors who publish with them that they will add the tax on.

The ongoing saga of Maurice Sendak’s estate is back in the news. He had collected some amazing paintings folios and first editions. Then the executors pulled 10,000 original items from the Sendak collection held at a Philadelphia library. Is it in accordance with his wishes? There is quite a debate on as the executors are not writers...

Boy books.... Girl books.... Book books!
A seven year old girls complaint about a non-fiction book being promoted as a boys book has prompted a change in policy from a publisher.

The news that over 60,000 UK boys have failed in their literacy by age 11 has galvanized a children’s writer. But he has an interesting way of going about it. Build some free gaming apps to go alongside his novels. Is there buy in from his publishers... YES. (This reminds me of a proposed idea along these lines here - No publisher buy in.) This is all interesting in light of a recent study on the use of tablets in schools.

Where are the books exploring conflict for children and teens from the other side. One writer is appalled that they are the only one writing with middle eastern protagonists.

New Zealand writers have been reeling lately with a string of publishing houses closing their NZ offices. Writer Beware has posted a warning, that writers taking their own rights back after disputes with publishers have to be very careful.

Jane Friedman has a guest on her blog sounding a note of caution on signing up for Kindle Unlimited.

Rachel Gardner details the kinds of rejections from editors she gets as an agent. (These are for books that went on to do well –we are not alone)

In the Craft Section,

In the Marketing Section,

Juggling multiple projects – Elisabeth S Craig

Update on the ACX alternative in audio books. (I linked to this a few months ago, so the update makes interesting reading.)

To Finish,
Two big projects that made the news this week.
One of the biggest YouTube sensations in recent years is a teenage girl blogging about her life. Girl Online by Zoe Sugg was released as a book this week and broke all sorts of records for a first book. How did this happen?

Serial, a podcast sensation, finished its first season... and asked its listeners for donations to do a second. How can publishing learn from this success? The Bookseller asks.

The power of the storytelling transcends the container it is delivered in.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Drinking The Water

What’s been the talking point around the virtual publishing water cooler this week.

If you are into children’s books then the Publisher’s Weekly article on the shifting sands of children’s book selling and the inroads being made by digital into this category is for you. There are some interesting numbers on what genres in children’s are selling well.
(Little Sips)

In the general category... The Mighty Zon is expanding. Publishers Weekly reports they are hiring and expanding their already impressive imprint range. This has raised some disquiet around the water cooler... how big can they get... and already close to half the books on the Amazon bestseller lists come from AmaZon imprints.

In a surprise move the Judge has finally ruled in the Julie And the Wolves e-book case (HarperCollins suing Open Road Media and Jean Craighead George, Author,) that HarperCollins were within their rights to publish the book as an ebook because the original contract for the book signed in 1971 had this clause.
Specifically, paragraph 20 of the 1971 contract states that HarperCollins “shall grant no license without the prior written consent of the Author… including uses in storage and retrieval and information systems, and/or whether through computer, computer-stored, mechanical or other electronic means now known or hereafter invented…”
This is going to affect authors and their backlists...
Open Road are appealing but it’s going to be difficult as while this case has been disputed (from 2011) the author and the agent have died.
(Maybe Something Stronger) 

Mike Shatzkin published an article this morning that is almost a How To Be A Publisher Now 101 course. It is a very interesting read and echoes other things I have been reading around the blogosphere this week that author/publishers are starting to take note of. Use those readers well…Engage, Engage, Engage.
(On to Coffee)

Dean Wesley Smith has another great post in his series on publishing. Getting into Bookshops. Dean shows how it is done if you are publishing on a shoestring. One of those bookmark it posts.
(Slurp It Up)

Jane Friedman has another interesting article from her Scratch magazine and it takes a further look at serialisation… writing and uploading on a new platform called Leanpub in chunks where you get feedback and money…
(Drink It Down)

Porter and Publishing Perspectives Ether issue (at 3am our time this morning) was on the issues that were brought up in Joanna Penn’s interview with KOBO guy Mark Lefebre on pricing of ebooks. Porter gathered up the main points from the audio into an interesting article - Have Authors LowBalled Themselves? This was used as the springboard for the #Ether talk. Check out the article, which links back to Joanna’s article that I linked to last week.
(Look for Something Stronger)

Joanna Penn has a great article this week on how she used promotion and collaborative team work to achieve her goal. Which is to get on the USA bestseller list...this entitles her to splash that title all over her books in future...and she has just done it!
(Pour The Wine)

In the Craft Section,
Ten Dialogue Tips - One of the better articles on dialogue I have read. Bookmark it!

Novel Revision Strategy – retype the draft. (Interesting idea here.)

Defending Your Antagonist - first you have to like them....

Middle Grade Vs Young Adult – the differences between them.

Are you guilty of being didactic? Melinda Szymanik has some thoughts about didacticism and how to spot it in your own writing. Great writing!

Jami Gold has THE post on using keystroke Macros inrevision. (I didn’t know you could do this...whole new world just opened up.)

In the Marketing Section,
Susan Kaye Quinn on Four Ways To Discoverability and a stellar post on Not Rushing To Publish.

Best Ways To Look at Crowd Sourcing projects. This is a really interesting article.

Agent Janet Reid talks about idiot agents... Great article on platforms and web presences.

Indie ReCon keeps on giving and this fabulous post by Angela Ackerman is no exception.  6 SmartWays authors can collaborate. This week Angela was the special guest at a weekly live Twitter chat  #indiechat and was her usual awesome self with a great discussion on marketing and promotion. (Just type #indiechat in the search bar and scroll down to the start and work up.)

To Finish,
We always like to know how the Pro’s do their writing stuff. Here is a couple of nifty articles where writers describe their daily routines.

First get a coffee….

Pic from Flickr Creative Commons/elitatt

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Is It Goodwill?

This week in the international childrens publishing community everyone was talking about the genre slap that we took when Kent University (UK) decided that Childrens Writing was not literary enough to teach seriously... this followed the sacking of the Times Children’s Book reviewer, in a budget cut. The children’s writing community in the UK wrote a letter signed by 425 writers and librarians to the Times expressing their outrage at this. Childrens writers around the world are facing the continual disparagement of what they do so there was lots of agreement when Keren David wrote this blog piece. There is a beautifully put comment on it from New Zealand’s Maria Gill who summed up our feelings here pretty well.

As the fallout continues over Learning Media and the sales of back lists etc etc, anybody who has got an email with new contract terms in it please check in with NZ Society of Authors before you sign anything.
Be aware that increasingly publishing contracts are now including tricky little phrases such as ‘all rights in perpetuity’ and ‘Worldwide’ and last month Writer Beware commented on a contract that had ‘Universe wide.’ Check over this handy book contract clause explain-all.

Bob Mayer has been looking at the traits of sucessful writers these days and it comes down to the fact that they are ‘Outliers.’ This is a really interesting article.

Continuing in this vein is a great post by C J Lyons who is probably the most sucessful Hybrid author out there. How has she juggled her writing career stradling both sides of the fence...she went and built a new paddock.

Bibliocrunch has some tips if you want to look into self publishing.

Phillip Jones of FutureBook has been looking at the slap dealt to the science publishing community from a Nobel Prize winner about the elitist nature of publishing journals... The Open Access of scholarly work is the big talking point in the academic community at the moment.

DigitalBookWorld is hosting a webinar on Rights Marketing and Management. Check it out.

Author newsletters...How do you do them and what use are they. This is a nifty bookmark worthy post giving you the low down.

Publishing Perspectives is taking issue with The Best Of 2013 Book lists...which are appearing all over the web at the moment. One ofthe more comprehensive book lists I’ve seen is BookRiot’s. At least I have heard of some of the books.

In the Craft section,
Susan Kaye Quinn on Brainstorming Your Book. This is a bookmark it post.

Writersinthestorm has a How to write like the wind...

Kirsten Lamb on character duality traits.

There are three stellar articles from Jami Gold.
Fix 4 common problems with The Emotion Thesaurus (Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi’s amazing book)

In the Marketing section,

Julie Hedlund has been doing a kick starter for her picture book which became funded yesterday. Take a look at how she broke it down and what she offered.

6 books every marketer needs to read. I have read some of them and they are very interesting even if you are not a marketer.

To Finish,
‘Tis the season to get gifts for yourself  (or the writer in your life...) Here we have Chuck’s Ten gifts for writers updated from when he asked people to kidnap Neil Gaiman.
K M Weiland has the top 10 gifts for writers...(not as extreme...) and
Writer Unboxed has bypassed the gift list and gone straight to New Years resolutions for writers...

Spread the Goodwill!


Pic from Amazon (5* book on visual fantasy writing)

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Bologna Bologna Bologna

Say Bologna to anyone interested in children’s writing and the response back is a dreamy far away look that goes with the heart felt phrase “wouldn’t it be heaven to be there.”
I was seriously jealous reading my twitter stream this week as agents were heading to the Bologna Children’s Book Fair and talking all about it.

New Zealand has always been known as a country that ‘punches above its weight’ in the global political scene.  We were in on forming the League of Nations and the UN and for any Americans that believe Argo is actually NZ was hiding Americans but we don’t talk about it....
Yesterday at Bologna to celebrate 50 years of the fair...everyone voted on the Best Children’s Publisher In The World by region. Six regions. Six winners. Our little Gecko Press from Wellington won their region. To stand acknowledged by your peers at the biggest children’s book fair in the world as one of the best publishers in the world...after only eight years of mind boggling. 

Congratulations Julia Marshall! Well Deserved!

So what else is happening at Bologna?
This year in the Tools of Change conference, that starts the day before the fair at Bologna, Bowker had an extraordinary presentation. Porter Anderson discusses the data from the slideshow which Bowker have made available and it does turn perceptions about children’s publishing upside down... for instance the biggest buyers of YA are...adults for themselves! If you are involved in children’s publishing take some time to go through the for thought all over them.

Joe Wikert, also at Bologna, is looking at the rise of children’s e-publishing. He profiles the winners in the interactive e-book awards. There is a video that is a must watch so that you can see why these books won! Great to see Michael Morpurgo’s book in there...and what a fascinating non fiction winner that is!

Outside of Bologna....
Barnes and Noble pull of Simon and Schuster books over their refusal to pay the new prices to have their books displayed is the hot topic of the week. Guess who are the people hurt in this one....

Novel Rocket is getting the comments after posting an article saying you should only write in one genre...

Courtney Milan looks at the New US Supreme Court ruling about First Sale Rights and the death of geographic rights...and checks out what it will mean for fiction writers...This is for all those writers who have ever wondered why their book is priced differently in different countries and whether they can order cheap copies from one country and onsell them...

Selling POD into bookstores...This is an interesting guest post on Catherine Ryan Howard’s blog.

Project Middle Grade did a survey about what kids actually looked at when sizing up a new book...Writers...You may have to change your focus!

What are Asians really interested in reading? Topical with everyone wondering how to get into the Asian market.

Diymfa on online writing communities...where do you get your support?

The Telegraph has published 30 things writers should know...a guest article from Matt Haig.

In Craft,
The funniest query to an agent...tip don’t do any of these.

In Marketing,
Indie friendly Book exhaustive list...(must keep)

To Finish,
Dean Wesley Smith’s article on sales from his Think Like A Publisher series is getting a workout on Twitter. If you haven’t read it check it out...coz from little things grow Bologna opportunities....

Happy Easter!


pic: The Magnificent Julia Marshall of Gecko Press at Bologna.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Serving Up Link Dinner

The first day of December and officially Summer in the Southern Hemisphere and suddenly the weather remembers that it is supposed to be hot and sunny.

Of course being the first day of December the shops go mad with Christmas decorations, Christmas music and the Christmas count down.
Every Christmas I get frustrated by the lack of Summer Christmas celebration music and decorations in the town. My kids are singing Frosty The Snowman and the mall is decorated in ice sculptures for Santa...say what?
The temperature is climbing and any snowman here wouldn't last long....

I think it is time we shed the Northern Hemisphere winter solstice type celebrations and start making an effort with the uniqueness of Christmas in the Pacific...that's Christmas day BBQ's and beach cricket...or lying outside trying to get a tan while digesting Christmas dinner.

What interesting tidbits and yummy treats can I serve you up as appetizers for a Christmas dinner of links this week?

NaNoWriMo has finished and now the big edit begins. If you are scratching your head looking at your opus and wondering how you can make it better check out these writing craft links.

From The Editors Blog- no perfect characters needed.
From Bob Mayer's store of great advice- conflict the fuel of your story.
From the team at Adventures in Children's Publishing-stimulus and response.

If you are sitting down and need to dine on more substantial fare....

Publishers Weekly looks at the Amazon library mess and asks where do traditional public libraries fit in all this?
YA Highway has a thought provoking post on why Authors disappear...
Have a serving of 30 quick tips for speakers.

Dessert, if you can fit it in....

Channelship ponders the future of book marketing
Jane Friedman warns writers that they are overlooking a vital skill.

For the after dinner mints...Kate Arms-Smith explores what you might need in a creative space and SCBWI has a fancy graphic on the lifecycle of the book.

Loosen your belt, stretch back and muse about all the goodies you have received....
Next week I will be away from my blog as I travel down to the South Island... this will give you time to digest your meal so you will be ready for the last serving of links for 2011. 
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