This week! Books!
First up, a programming announcement: I’m going to be traveling (see above) and taking a blog break for the next few weeks, but there will be some guest posts for you to enjoy! I’ll be back with new posts on September 27. Feel free to contact me in the meantime if you need editing or consultations.
As the pandemic, labor, and stuck-boat disruptions continue to ripple through the global economy, the publishing industry could face a rocky holiday season, even more so than 2020. Wholesaler Ingram is ordering books earlier and in greater quantities, and is encouraging stores to place their orders early and in carton quantities.
Amazon’s largely hands-off approach to self-publishing and its algorithmic nudging is again under fire as Congress members Adam Schiff and Elizabeth Warren pressed Amazon to provide information about its misinformation policies amid concerns books are spreading falsehoods about vaccines and fake cures.
Author and editor (and recent guest blogger!) Christine Pride wrote about how the Trump era made her question whether she wanted another white friend in her life, and how this impacted her relationship with her co-writer Jo Piazza. Their novel, We Are Not Like Them, comes out next month.
Dwight Garner at the New York Times has an awesome profile of S.A. Cosby, whose books have recently been shooting up bestseller lists and attracting Hollywood interest.
In agent advice news, Janet Reid has a reminder to consider the source when evaluating pitching advice, and Jessica Faust and James McGowan talk about some of the benefits of younger agents.
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:
- A Slow Fire Burning by Paula Hawkins
- It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover
- Billy Summers by Stephen King
- The Madness of Crowds by Louise Penny
- The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Adult print and e-book nonfiction:
- The Afghanistan Papers by Craig Whitlock
- American Marxism by Mark R. Levin
- The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk
- The Long Slide by Tucker Carlson
- The Sisters of Auschwitz by Roxane van Iperen
Young adult hardcover:
- One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus
- Witch Haven by Sasha Peyton Smith
- The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
- Stamped by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi
- Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel by Val Emmich with Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek & Justin Paul
Middle grade hardcover:
- Wonder by R.J. Palacio
- Refugee by Alan Gratz
- We Are Family by LeBron James and Andrea Williams
- Ground Zero by Alan Gratz
- The Ickabog by J.K. Rowling
This week on the blog
In case you missed them, here are this week’s posts:
- Don’t be too easy on your characters
- How to stop writing a novel
- Avoid “lists of ingredients” in query letters (query critique)
Don’t forget that you can nominate your first page and query for a free critique on the blog:
And keep up with the discussion in all the places!
And finally, like many people I was devastated by the death of Michael K. Williams, best known for his role as Omar from The Wire, and it’s worth revisiting this amazing profile from 2017.
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 guide to writing a novel and my guide to publishing a book.
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