Friday, April 18, 2014

Publishing Industry News

This week's publishing news and industry blogs covers 4/4-4/18.

Publishing News

The Authors Guild files an appeal for the Google book-scanning case, in which Google was allowed to continue scanning books from libraries.

In the Apple vs the States case, Apple has requested a stay against the damages until it's had the chance to appeal. The damages trial has been set for July. Apple's motion that the states should not be able to form a class for a class-action suit was also denied.

Environmental reports looking at publishing in 2012 show improvement when compared to 2007.

Jeff Bezos writes a long letter to Amazon shareholders, looking at where Amazon is now and his philosophies on running the company.

Goodreads will soon allow users to add Amazon book purchases to their bookshelves.

Some indie bookstores try out "one book, one store" marketing, where they pick a single book to push to see if it significantly improves sales.

Industry Blogs

QueryTracker's Publishing Pulse for 4/4 and 4/11.

Nathan Bransford's The Past Few Weeks in Books.

Nathan Bransford also talks about how to know if you have a good agent or not, and invites guest blogger and author Natalie Whipple to talk about the differences between self-publishing and legacy publishing and how to decide which is best for you.

On QueryTracker, Stina Lindenblatt talks about what Frozen can teach us about writing. Rosie Genova explains why including someone who did you wrong in a manuscript is a bad idea. Sarah Pinneo shares her favorite books on writing.

On Writer Beware, Victoria Strauss raises her eyebrow at a company that apparently allows people to buy story plots and self-publish them as their own after a little tweaking. Okaaaaaaay. Also, a three-year-old publisher, Silver Publishing, falls apart, and the info available to authors is mostly sordid rumors.

Agent Janet Reid answers questions and gives advice. Is it okay to lie or stretch the truth when describing the plot in a query? (No.) Do you need an agent if a university press is going to publish you? (Reid's an agent, so of course she says yes. But it's also possible to go it on your own, if you're careful to watch the contract and make sure the copyright doesn't go to the university.) Can you write a query in the protagonist's voice? (No, that's not what's meant by voice in a query. Never write a 1st person POV query blurb.)

Reid also explains why agents might sometimes go missing/off the rails/run away to foreign countries never to be heard from again. Mostly stress. And how to tell if your agent is in danger of this (keep an eye on communication). Can you use a TV show as a comp title? (She dislikes it, but there's no universal rule.) If you've won a contest not well known in the States, should you link to it, or just list the award? (She suggest list; agents will google it if they've not heard of it and they're interested enough for it to make a difference.) If your comp is a major, best-seller name, and there's no other good comparison, is it okay to use it as a comp? (Make sure the comp is recent. If you're jumping on last decade's bandwagon, maybe think about self-publishing.)

Agent Suzie Townsend answers questions on her own blog. If you've received an offer of publication, but want an agent, what sort of subject line should you use? (For an agent you've not yet spoken to, "QUERY--OFFER OF PUBLICATION" works.) Is 225K words the kiss of death for an epic fantasy? (Usually, especially for a first book. Unless it's so outstanding the agent has to find the socks you just knocked off. Even then it'll be cut.) Should I write a book in a dead genre? (In her opinion, if it's what you're passionate about, then write it. And then write something else.)

Author Kristine Kathryn Rusch advises authors to stand up for themselves if agents, editors, or others are in the wrong, and to do so through education and documentation, and always making sure there's an escape clause. She also talks about how on-demand attitudes of the current generation are shifting book culture.

On the Futuristic, Fantasy, and Paranormal blog, author Laura Drake talks about keeping expenses in line to earn overall profit on books. Barb Drozdowich and Babs Hightower explain what kinds of goals are realistic for blog tours--not selling books, but reaching new people. Dawn Hamilton explains Goodreads for new authors and what to do to best utilize the site.

Hybrid author Elizabeth Craig asks if you must be hybrid to earn the most, and stay hybrid, and shares her own experiences. She concludes that after you've been published by the Big Five, and gotten the traditional publishing benefits, then it's perfectly possible to only self-publish from then on and still be successful.

A few posts with hundreds of writing resources on tumblr (not new to the past couple of weeks--about a year old-- but I found it only this week).

Author Angela Quarles describes the purpose of a query, when to start writing one, and when to start sending them.

The Editor's Blog offers an in-depth post on adjectives, from the types of adjectives and how to know what order to put them in, to how to punctuate.

Digital textbooks save a lot of money. But a study by West Chester University suggests print textbooks may enhance reading comprehension.

An infographic from Marketing Charts on what influences readers' decisions to buy books. is a visual recommendation image that shows you covers of books you might like after you type in the name of a book you do like. (If you don't see me for a week or so, I'm probably playing around with this.)

For one week, all products by the Oxford University Press site will be free, starting April 20.

What publishing news have you encountered in the past two weeks?

Rebekkah is the author of Into the Tides, a contemporary fantasy:

Tone-deaf Kelly lost nearly everyone she loved when tides of magic drowned the South. With the help of the inborn music magic she long thought useless, she may be able to save them--but doing so could cost her everyone she has left.

No comments:

Post a Comment