On Fiction Writer’s Co-ops

From huffingtonpost, a piece on the confusing state of the publishing industry. An excerpt:

There’s almost no author alive who isn’t weathering the tumultuous changes in the publishing industry. Whether its being told your marketing budget will based on how many friends you have on Facebook and followers you have on Twitter, finding out there’s no press coming for your book, or discovering the agency model for e-books might not be the best thing that every happened to your bottom line… there’s just not a lot of good news floating around out there.

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My Novel—an Update

A brief recap: I started my book in 2004, while I was still working, but got bogged down by the lack of a plot and work. I set it aside until after retirement and thought about what the story should be, its themes, and how I was going to develop the plot. I began writing in earnest in late summer 2008, which included considerable research to be certain I knew what I was writing about. By late 2009, I had a manuscript. My wife read it, told me what she thought of it; and I rewrote it, tossing forty pages of work. I had considerable help from a content editor—she read it, I rewrote it; she reread it again and I rewrote it again. I followed this by hiring a copy/line editor, which resulted in another edit on my part. Then on August 28, 2010, I attended a workshop of the Colorado Independent Publishers Association (CIPA) in Denver and met authors, agents, editors, publishers, printers, book shepherds, self-publishers, and consultants. Here is where I learned that “writing a book is a creative act. Selling the book is a business,” and I knew nothing about the business.

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The Disruption Facing Book Publishers

Full article found here.

“The writing has been on the wall for some time in the book publishing business: platforms like Amazon’s Kindle and the iPad have caused an explosion of e-book publishing that is continuing to disrupt the industry on a whole series of levels and reshape the future of the book, as Om has written about in the past. And evidence continues to accumulate that e-books are not just something established authors with an existing brand can make use of, but are also becoming a real alternative to traditional book contracts for emerging authors as well — all of which should serve as a massive wake-up call for publishers.”

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10 Mistakes Big Publishers Make

From The Nervous Breakdown, 10 Mistakes Big Publishers Make:

When I was in college lo thirty years ago, I had a good friend who I’ll call Margaret.* She was so petite that she bought her clothes in the children’s department, but she made up for her physical stature with brains and good humor. (When she became a lawyer, she happily started wearing non-prescription glasses just to look older.) I don’t recall how we met, but we really dug each other in a platonic way. We dined regularly on Chinese food and would talk the night away.

One day, Margaret told me she’d started dating a guy who she wanted me to meet. In her typically self-deprecating way, she described the guy as “kind of goofy,” but it was clear to me that she was falling in love. His name was Seth Godin.

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My First Novel

I give my mother credit for putting this notion of writing a book into my head. In 1976, at age sixty-three, she sat on a stool in a narrow hall closet of our home in Ohio and slowly typed a short memoir on an ancient black Underwood typewriter. My father had her manuscript professionally typeset and printed as a small pamphlet. Mom and Dad then distributed her memoir to the extended family and friends. It was her only real writing effort, and as far as I was concerned, it was an impressive achievement, full of warm reminiscences of growing up on a farm and some signal events in her life. I thought, “One day, I could do something like that.”

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