This week! Books!
First up, my heart goes out to everyone affected by the utterly senseless war in Ukraine. If you’re interested in helping, I hope you’ll join me in supporting Nova Ukraine, an organization one of my Ukrainian friends is involved in, which is working to provide humanitarian aid to those affected.
Pretty big publishing news this week as Amazon is exiting the physical bookstore business in order to focus more on groceries and a department store concept. They ended up opening 68 bookstores as part of their print retail experiment.
And the publishing news that everyone is actually talking about: Science fiction and fantasy author Brandon Sanderson opened a Kickstarter to self-publish four of his novels. He promptly raised over $21 million and counting.
While there have been plenty of self-publishing success stories, mega-bestsellers have still largely remained with traditional publishers rather than venturing out into more entrepreneurial models. It will be interesting to see if Sanderson’s success is a harbinger of more solo efforts to come.
Still, it’s hard to disagree with Brandy Jensen’s take:
We Need Diverse Books is now accepting applications for their 2022 Internship Grants! They will award 24 grants of $3,000 to help interns from diverse backgrounds afford summer internships. Apply here!
Authors of a certain age often ask me if they can still make it as a debut author now that they can’t be marketed as a hot young author. Now I have a link to send them! Kathleen Stone compiled a list of eleven debuts by authors over sixty.
How does one keep going and promote a book in “times like these?” Agent Kate McKean says: with care, but still do it.
And Charles Dickens was one of the world’s most famous celebrities starting around age twenty-five and had a generous spirit, except for the circumstances surrounding one affair where it all nearly came tumbling down.
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 Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley
- It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover
- Verity by Colleen Hoover
- House of Sky and Breath by Sarah J. Maas
- The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Adult print and e-book nonfiction:
- Red-Handed by Peter Schweizer
- The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel van der Kolk
- The 1619 Project edited by Nikole Hannah-Jones, Caitlin Roper, Ilena Silverman and Jake Silverstein
- Greenlights by Matthew McConaughey
- The Splendid and the Vile by Erik Larsen
Young adult hardcover:
- One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus
- The Girl Who Fell Beneath the Sea by Axie Oh
- Anatomy by Dana Schwartz
- Ain’t Burned All the Bright by Jason Reynolds
- The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Middle grade hardcover:
- The Ice Cream Machine by Adam Rubin
- Refugee by Alan Gratz
- Wonder by R.J. Palacio
- Map of Flames by Lisa McMann
- Little Leaders by Vashti Harrison
This week on the blog
In case you missed them, here are this week’s posts:
- How to craft a great mystery in a novel
- The two key fundamentals of plot descriptions (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, Robert Mapplethorpe is one of my favorite photographers, and I enjoyed Christiane Bird’s look at his time living in the Chelsea Hotel amid a changing downtown scene in the 1980s.
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 (NEW!), my guide to writing a novel and my guide to publishing a book.
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Photo: The Huntington Library, San Marino, CA