This week! Books!
Before we get to the links, a friendly reminder to please REGISTER TO VOTE. Do it. Make sure you’re registered.
Now then. Let’s get to the articles!
There have been several really great articles recently that look back in America’s past for clues about our post-pandemic future. F. Scott Fitzgerald gets his due with this really awesome essay about his sharp, incisive eye on the “jazz age” that followed World War I and the Spanish Flu.
Referrals are one of the absolute best ways to get your foot in the door with a literary agent. Agent Kristin Nelson talks about what referrals are and, importantly, what they aren’t.
Barnes & Noble CEO James Daunt recently gave a lengthy interview to Book Industry Study Group, and industry sage Mike Shatzkin delved into what it means. Some of Mike’s key takeaways: B&N plans to reduce initial buys and rely on rapid replenishment, they’re enabling a mix of centralized and local buying (which Mike finds confusing), and there was one huge omission in the interview: what will happen to bn.com.
In related news, Jane Friedman writes that Amazon’s importance to the book industry keeps growing, for better or worse.
What do literary agents look for in a book? Agents Jessica Faust and James McGowan discuss.
This week in bestsellers
Here are the top five NY Times bestsellers in a few key categories. (All links are affiliate links):
Adult print and e-book fiction:
- The Evening and the Morning by Ken Follett
- Vince Flynn: Total Power by Kyle Mills
- Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith
- To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini
- Shadow in Death by J.D. Robb
Adult print and e-book nonfiction:
- Rage by Bob Woodward
- Blackout by Candace Owens
- Disloyal by Michael Cohen
- Killing Crazy Horse by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard
- Caste by Isabel Wilkerson
Young adult hardcover:
- Stamped by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi
- The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
- One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus
- Grown by Tiffany D. Jackson
- Legendborn by Tracy Deonn
Middle grade hardcover:
- Rowley Jefferson’s Awesome Friendly Adventure by Jeff Kinney
- The One and Only Bob by Katherine Applegate
- Wonder by R.J Palacio
- Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid by Jeff Kinney
- Three Keys by Kelly Yang
This week on the blog
Don’t forget that you can nominate your first page and query for a free critique on the blog:
In case you missed them, here are this week’s posts:
And keep up with the discussion in all the places!
And finally, The New Yorker’s newsletter linked to this incredible essay on depression by Andrew Solomon from 1998. Particularly when so many of us are struggling under the stresses of the pandemic and upcoming election and trying to sort things through, I found it very much worth a read. Get help if you need it and let’s pull through this together.
Have a great weekend!
Need help with your book? I’m available for manuscript edits, query critiques, and coaching!
For my best advice, check out my online classes, my guide to writing a novel and my guide to publishing a book.
And if you like this post: subscribe to my newsletter!
Art: Newport, RI. Photo by me. Follow me on Instagram!