Friday, February 14, 2014

Publishing Industry News (Part 1)

Publishing industry news for 1/25-2/13/14. 3 weeks this time, due to vacation! Broken into two parts, because it'll be long--part 2, news, tomorrow; today will focus on industry blogs.

Industry Blogs:

QueryTracker's Publishing Pulse for 1/31, 2/7, and 2/14.

Nathan Bransford's The Past Few Weeks in Books for 2/7.

On QueryTracker, Sarah Pinneo explains the contemporary Young Adult genre--what the POV usually is, who the narrators usually are, and other major genre identifies. Ash Krafton talks about the self-publishing or legacy publishing debate and her take on it. Angela Ackerman talks about the Do's and Don'ts of Twitter DMing (hint: don't spam). Rosie Genova offers advice in advance of conference season on what to do and not to do at writers' conferences.

On Writer Beware, we discover that scandal-ridden WinePress Publishing has closed its doors. And remember vanity publisher Publish America? It's now name-hopped to America Star Books. And speaking of name-hopping, Albee Agency PR/Sandpiper Publicity adds Magnus Publicity to its names--all of which you should be wary of, as Strauss points out various instances of dubious claims and spam-style tactics. She also begins a series of posts about author information databases, aimed at helping prevent books from being labeled orphan works by connecting books with author names.

Kristine Kathryn Rusch continues her discoverability series: Part Between 7 and 8: Understanding types of readers; Part Eight: Passive marketing; Part Nine: blogs and guest blogging.

Agent Kristen Nelson suggests that UK contracts are as important as US contracts for US authors. Be careful to read the fine print.

Agent Rachelle Gardner offers advice. Are you worried about someone stealing your ideas? If so, be vague when describing them; but really it's not worth the blood pressure to worry in the first place. Two writers with the same idea will make two very, very different books. She also advises on how to treat your muse like a puppy to max out your creativity and avoid writers' block.

And Agent Janet Reid answers questions. An agent assured me all agents wanted all writers to hire editors before ever querying and provided me a contact for her own editing group; is this correct/ethical? (No. You may choose to hire an editor after rejections, but it's not step one of querying. Agents should definitely not refer you to editors, especially those giving them kickbacks, before accepting you. Plus more issues here...) If my protagonist doesn't have a name, how do I handle it to avoid first-person queries? (Give them a name for the query, or look at how some other authors with nameless narrators handled the problem.) What's the line between promotion and spam on Twitter? (One promo for every 10 tweets, no more, or you're edging towards spam.)

More questions answered by Reid: Can I upload my book to Kindle while I'm querying? (Uploading to Kindle is by definition publishing your book. If you're not trying to self-publish, don't upload to Kindle. If you're querying agents, you shouldn't have already published the book. Therefore, no.) Is it okay to tweet your agent/any agent with questions? (No. Twitter is a public discourse. Don't have a private conversation in public.) Should I create a web page for my unpublished book with its cover, etc, while I'm querying, or should I wait for the publisher to announce my book? (If it's unpublished, it doesn't have a cover. The publisher doesn't "announce" your book. If you design a web page now, it should not be about an unpublished book.) How do I handle revise & resubmit queries after it's been revised? (Reid explains.) An agent requested my book based on two different pitches in unrelated pitch events. What do I do? (Mention it in the query, and congrats on interesting her twice.) If I want to be an intern at a literary agency, can I send my resume to those that haven't posted job openings? (Sure, but it's not likely to get you a job.)

Writers Write offers some current news: Want to buy audio books? Overdrive (partnering with libraries) will only be lending audiobooks in MP3 DRM-free format, ditching the old WMA (Windows Media Autio) option that was locked with DRM. And JK Rowling is suing the Daily Mail for libel after they ran a story saying she accused a church group of harassing behavior, when the article she published that was referenced in the Daily Mail's story actually praised the group for their help and support.

The second half of the post, Publishing News, will be up later! Until then, happy Valentine's Day!

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