Another busy week in publishing, so let’s get started.
First off, my wonderful client Jennifer Hubbard and some of her blogging friends are hosting a fundraiser for local libraries! All you have to do is click over to her blog and leave a comment on her blog or one of the other participants, and they’ll donate an extra 25 cents.
Also on Jennifer Hubbard’s blog recently was some of the best first draft advice you’ll ever receive.
And our good friend Conduit/Stuart Neville, author of the forthcoming novel THE TWELVE (UK)/GHOSTS OF BELFAST (US) (can we start calling Conduit/Stuart “Slash” for short?) posted about a common sentiment about embarking upon the all-important second novel. Angst and nervousness sometimes (often) involved.
In the category of “holy crap, why didn’t anyone tell me this blog existed???”, I came across Picador creative director Henry Sene Yee’s blog, which is mainly devoted to talking about how book designers create their jackets, their inspiration and source material, and some of the drafts and false starts along the way. IT. IS. FASCINATING. The most recent post is about the cover for COLUMBINE by Dave Cullen. (hat tip Book Design Review)
Moonrat took a look at a Richard Curtis article from 1986 about the way the conglomeration of the publishing industry has resulted in editorial turnover that leads to less author and book commitment, which is still, shall we say, still relevant. Curtis also created just a partial list of the publishing mergers and acquisitions of the past 20 years, which is eye-popping.
Good news for the indispensable site Writer Beware, a judge dismissed a lawsuit by a supposed literary agent against the site, with prejudice. I’ve always wanted to type that. I just took out the trash WITH PREJUDICE. It has a ring to it. Anyway, as you may recall a literary agent sued the site’s organizers claiming libel, but the judge was having none of that.
The Bookseller recently reported on a reader study (market research?? publishing??) in the UK that concluded that 20m (which I think means 20 million, although it could mean 20 males) readers are currently being left behind by a publishing industry that they think conveys a certain type of society and lifestyle. They also regard reading as an “anti-social activity”. Well, YEAH. And thank goodness, too.
Also in “those wacky Brits” news, the annual award for the Oddest Book Title was announced. This year’s winner: THE 2009-2014 WORLD OUTLOOK FOR 60-MILLIGRAM CONTAINERS OF FROMAGE FRAIS. Sorry, BABOON METAPHYSICS. Not weird enough for first place.
In agent advice news, you may have noticed a recent article in The Beast about how some big short story collections are defying industry conventional wisdom that says collections don’t sell. So agents are probably all over them now, right? Miriam at Dystel & Goderich says not so fast.
Meanwhile, after all this talk about the death of publishing, do you still want to work in the publishing business? Jessica Faust has some advice: pack your bags for Manhattan. Oh. And you might want to brush up on your drink mixology skills for your night job (yes, you may need one).
And in another crucial question answered, Jessica Faust tackles what an author can really do to help sell their books. A must-read.
And finally, take a beloved picture book classic, add Dave Eggars and Spike Jonez, mix in a dash of the Arcade Fire (Mom, that’s a popular band among people my age), and what you have is pure hipster crack. I can tell you from personal experience that Gen Xers and Yers across the nation are currently losing their minds over the trailer for WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE:
Have a great weekend!