Sunday, April 27, 2014

A look at traditional book publishing via Scratch Magazine

The second issue of Jane Friedman's new e-magazine, Scratch is now available.

If you're not a subscriber, jump here to sign up.

In Issue Two, Jane has an article about traditional book publishing, explaining the facts many first-time authors forget.

Getting an agent to LOVE your book is one thing. Getting an editor to LOVE your book is another. But .... before you can get a big YES from a publisher, they run a P&L [profit and loss analysis].  Friedman shares a sample P&L. It is rare to see this detail shared, so Friedman's insider-information is worth examining.

  • Before a publisher decides on a book project, they need to get a sense of the costs for editing, artwork, and marketing.
  • Then they figure the manufacturing costs, overhead and infrastructure expenses.
  • Then they set the retail price, deduct the manufacturing cost, the discount given to booksellers, and the cost of returns.

So you see they spend a great deal of time and money investing in an author's book. That is why they need to be certain the author has a platform that can sustain continued sales. They are in business to make a profit, and they use the P&L to can determine an accurate dollar amount of net earnings from the book's sales.

Do the work to expand your platform before you ask a publisher to invest in you.
I have fourteen posts on platform here.
Get your Scratch subscription here.

See book review: "Authorpreneur in Pajamas" by Geraldine Solon

Writers, be sure to click on the Book Reviews for Writers tab or click here, for a review of Authorpreneur in Pajamas. Author Geraldine Solon has published three novels, and this book focuses on what she learned in promoting those books.

If you recall my former Pajama Marketing blog, which resulted in the book: Blog Power & Social Medua Handbook, (published in 2011) you're already aware of some author marketing obligations.Solon's book will give your book marketing an edge by explaining how authors can use social media for greater exposure and sales.

If you're a new author in 2013 or 2014, take a look at Authorpreneur in Pajamas for some good resources. As you'll note in my review, though, her book needed at least one more edit before publishing. That serves as another fine example to all authors. Professional editing and proofreading is an essential step in publishing.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Submit your ficion to "Reading Out Loud"

Ready to try new avenues to publication of your book excerpt or short stories?

Here's the link to the announcement:

Subject: Reading Out Loud, Dramatized Short Fiction Podcast, Looking for Submissions of Flash or Full-Length Short Fiction

Reading Out Loud wants to read your story... out loud.
Ideally, we’re looking for character-driven stories with a sense of place and a strong narrative voice. Remember that these are to be performed as fully produced, dramatized audio pieces, and the aforementioned characteristics make it a little easier for us to produce. However, don't let that stop you from sending us that weird, stream-of-consciousness piece you've got. We'd like to read that, too.


Flash Fiction submissions should be up to 1000 words.
Full length short fiction submissions should be 2000 to 4000 words in length.
Please send your work in .doc format to submissionsATreadingoutloudDOTorg. Indicate in the subject of your e-mail whether it is flash or full length.
Please include a brief bio in the body of your email.
Simultaneous submissions are accepted, but please let us know if your work is accepted elsewhere.
"Reading Out Loud" requires “one-time rights” to your piece. We’ll record it, put it on the podcast, and release it back into the wild.
If your work has been previously published, it is up to you to confirm you have retained the rights to republish the work.
"Reading Out Loud" is a labor of love. There is no monetary compensation for anyone involved or associated with its production.

Find our more at our website, or listen to us on iTunes.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Fiction writers: Lots to learn from this article.

Read the article "A Novel Like a Rocket" by Akhil Sharma in the current New Yorker, about his struggles writing "Family Life."
Powerful lessons....

Find this in the New Yorker here

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Can you be your own editor?

On, Heather Jacks has a useful post on editing:  Among her six tips for independent/self-published authors, she has this explanation of various editing functions, and why you need an appropriate editor for your book.
Here is a brief excerpt:

"There are a few types of editors. There are copyeditors, who will fix typos, misspellings, grammar, clean up your prose, and correct a fact; there are line editors, who will help you arrange your paragraphs; and then there is a most important type of editor, which I call a ‘planning editor’—that person who will partner with you on the project and tell you things you don’t want to hear, like you need to get rid of half of what you wrote or this isn’t a topic that warrants an entire book or this should be a screenplay, not a novel."