Monday, September 8, 2008

Is today's publishing market a bit like the tv reality show Wipeout?

Happy - people are saying nice things about my book The Were-Nana. Sad - publishing markets seem to be downsizing. I guess its just an economic reality. Sometimes i think wistfully of what it might have been like to be writing twenty or thirty years ago when publishers became more involved with their writer's careers, patiently nurturing them and helping them along. They were probably more willing to take a risk back then too. But then if I was writing back then I have to remember I'd probably be doing it long hand and I wouldn't have some of the excellent technology and groovy accessories that are available to us today. No time is the best time or the worst time. Its just 'how it is' right now and whatever the circumstances, the plain truth is I'm a writer. If I don't find a way to move forward in this environment I may as well give up. But I don't want to give up so I'll be thinking my way through the current setbacks and difficulties and hopefully coming up with some strategies for keeping my sanity and my sense of humour (an essential tool in the writers tool kit) intact. And maybe i'll also find a way to make the most of the way things are now.

And thank you Fifi for your very kind words of encouragement. They made a big difference.

2 comments:

maureen said...

Yeah Fi's good at that...I just got an email saying have a bone hunt for my book Bones...(hmmm it's about finding human bones...)
When you come up with some great strategies...don't forget us other poor struggling children's writers...I'll show you mine if you show me yours....
Since agent sophies visit we have been thinking and talking about promo and how publishers (who you would have thought wanted your books to sell as they have 90% of the rrp)don't seem to be doing anything...I could be wrong...but It seems it is up to the author to generate sales....
checking sense of humour in writers kit...aah yes.. next to that nice square bottle...
cheers (hic)
maureen

Penny said...

I know this is a very late addition to this blog and nobody will probably ever see it because of that, but ...
Maureen, I'm afraid that's a very simplistic way of looking at the roaylty split - no way do publishers get 90% of the RRP! Publishers give 35-40% discount to the booksellers, plus bear all the costs of typesetting, printing, freighting and promoting the book, as well as employing the editors, sales reps etc. Hello-o-o!