Friday, October 21, 2011

Publishing News

Another round of recent blogs worth reading! There seems to be a theme this week of things you shouldn't say.

Jessica Faust at BookEnds mentions the importance of words in her post on writers and self-confidence. Don't say "just" ("I'm just getting touch") because it implies that the e-mail isn't important. Don't say "if you're still interested," because it implies that maybe she wouldn't be. Be confident - talking to your prospective agent really isn't the place for modesty.

She also points out that you DO need to read your contract. Really? Really? I thought that was covered in Basic Life Intelligence 101. In case you missed the class, read your contracts before signing them! Even if you've got someone else reading them for you!

Rachelle Gardner advises writers not to mention how long they've been writing in their query letter - even if their author bio is scarce. "I've been writing since I was five" is not the thing to fill it with. Why? Well, think about all the award-winning writers who didn't begin writing until they were adults. It's just not useful information.

PsyBlog talks about why you shouldn't announce your writing goals, since it actually reduces your productivity, contrary to popular belief. Who knew?

Querytracker tells us to stop being nice to our characters. No, really. Being mean is what makes the story interesting. Stop trying to help them, and make their lives harder.

Nathan Bransford offers a first-page critique that I think most writers will find useful. It features problems that many writers face: zooming from limited to omniscient POV, and not giving the stakes soon enough.

ProBlogger mentions that the key to making a good blog great is to simply stop doubting yourself.

Querytracker also tells us some time-saving fixes and mistakes not to make before you start writing. These are things I definitely wish I'd known, when I first started writing.

And BIG news for you published authors out there: According to the New York Times, Perseus Books Group has a new deal for authors seeking to self-publish old works whose rights have reverted back to them, or self-publish things they've written that haven't been published before. This includes a 70% cut going to the author - and since publishers typically give an e-publishing cut of 25%, that's a big deal.

I wonder if this has something to do with Amazon's dealing directly with the authors? According to the New York Times, publishers are getting scared of being cut out of the picture entirely. Not a happy world, if you're a publishing company. But read the fine print if you do sign with Amazon - a lot of publishers may be unhappy with you, especially if you have a previous contract with them, and Amazon has different rules than the traditional publishers. For one author, "Her contract has a clause that forbids her from discussing the details, which is not traditional in publishing. The publicity plans for the book are also secret" (page two of the article).

And on Nathan Bransford's forums, a reader asks a question that many people have: "So when you have a dialogue with two people, and one's response is non-verbal, does it still need to be set in its own paragraph?" The answer is pretty good - yes and no.
What interesting links have you found these past couple of weeks?

No comments:

Post a Comment