Friday, April 26, 2013

A Winter's Day in 1939 is now an e-book...

So a while back I said I had a wee sekrit. The wee sekrit can now be revealed cos it's on Amazon where everyone can see it!! My latest title with Scholastic, A Winter's Day in 1939, is now available as an e-book. You can go see it here, or even better, you might like to buy it :) It has had some very nice reviews (you can see some here or here). Yay!!

And I have been reading some interesting things on the net over the last few days - Barry Eisler's take (at Joe Konrath's blog) on the choices available to authors in today's publishing environment. This ruffled a lot of agent and traditional publisher feathers after they took exception to his suggestion that the only real advantage traditional (legacy) publishers could offer authors was print distribution. All very interesting stuff. I am not opposed to legacy publishing, agents, or self publishing although I also think none are perfect either. But there are two things I do to help myself - 1) keep informed and 2) try to avoid casting anyone as the enemy. An adversarial approach in publishing is no good for anyone.

Then Nathan Bransford took a closer look at the state of e-book sales and pointed out that these aren't declining as has been reported elsewhere. I always cast a jaundiced eye over statistics and try understanding the agenda behind their use and the people using them. It's a bit like the man showing off his 14 year old McDonald's hamburger, which doesn't look a day over 24 hours old, and saying this is why we shouldn't eat junk food. Does anybody ever try keeping any conventional food or home food with salt and sugar in it and say we shouldn't eat that? What about oil or dried fruit? I bet I could keep a box of weetbix for 14 years or even a homemade scone. And just because its appearance is little altered doesn't mean it is edible. And frankly if my appearance didn't deteriorate over 14 years I would be pretty happy (just don't check out that painting in the attic....). Just saying.... that 14 year old burger is not a particularly robust experiment.

And finally in my little trilogy of internet surfing I give you another treatise by Sara Sheridan on what author's really earn. This topic is a perennial favourite with me, partly because I feel most folk persist in having a mistaken belief that authors earn a good deal of money. I do not yet reach the median figure Ms Sheridan quotes in her article. In fact not even half that and yet I have had at least one new title out every year for the last three years and I have kept busy with school visits, workshops, public appearances and other events. And of the money I do earn most does not come from the sale of books. If we seem desperate for funding, its because, well, we are. And we are not thumb twiddlers resting on our fat laurels. The authors and illustrators I know are hard-working people, usually reliant on some secondary method of supporting themselves.


1 comment:

Justine Windsor said...

Congrats on the ebook!

Really good post Melinda. You are so right about the self publishing/trade publishing "war". There is so much vilification from both sides, which is a shame, because everyone has the same goal – delivering great books to readers. I keep out of it too, but I do watch carefully from the sidelines as there is a lot to learn...