The Acquisition Process by Harold Underdown from The Purple Crayon, to appear in the 2010 Children's Writer's and Illustrator's Market. Peek: "Part of the reason why the process can be difficult and time-consuming is simply that it couldn't possibly be more important to publishers. As noted above, this is how publishers build their future, and they want to get it right. So publishers think, and debate, and then think some more."
All About Writing Contests from Nathan Bransford - Literary Agent. Peek: "Know what you're entering. Know what happens to your work in the event you win (or even/especially if you don't win). Make sure you're completely comfortable with it."
The Art of the Blurb Request by Agent Kristin from Pub Rants. Peek: "Even with noble intentions, most writers who experience success end up having to put a moratorium on offering blurbs for a couple of reasons."
Attorney Interview: Aimée Bissonette on Law & Publishing from Cynsations.
Austin Avant-Grande Mentoring Program: "a network of successful kid-lit artists and writers offering support, providing guidance, and sharing expertise in a highly professional manner. AAMP amplifies a sense of community through a concentrated focus on craft."
Book Publishing Glossary from Nathan Bransford - Literary Agent. Note: if you want to succeed in the publishing business, it helps to speak the language.
Book Revenue Breakdown from Nathan Bransford -- Literary Agent. Peek: "....note that this (thankfully) doesn't include rights the agent/author might have reserved, such as audio rights, foreign, and dramatic rights, which can be very important in helping authors earn enough for a new couch to sit on as they frantically write their next book in the hopes of landing the money for a new coffee table."
Book Wire: Inside the Marketplace published by Cahners Business Information.
The Business Side, an e-newsletter, covers the business aspects of the children's publishing industry for the author-illustrator audience. Each issue will contain an article about a business issue like a contract term or phrase and what it means for an author or illustrator. Subscribers are invited to send in general contract or other business questions. Each issue also will feature a market that offers fair contracts. From the editor: "When you subscribe, you'll receive an e-mail confirming that you signed up. Option one in that e-mail takes you to the Yahoo site. Option two is just to click 'reply', then 'send'. That's the faster, easier one. If you do not receive an e-mail from Yahoo confirming your subscription, please try again or contact me." To subscribe: click here.
Candie Moonshower on Dealing with Rejections from Alice's CWIM Blog.
Children’s Media Professionals’ Forum: an online community of media specialists, booksellers, authors, illustrators, agents, educational consultants, publishing industry professionals, and television producers.
Children's Writer's & Illustrator's Market E-Newsletter: "sign up to receive a free monthly newsletter featuring news, tips, market information, Q&A and more straight from CWIM to your inbox."
Children's Writers Marketplace from Margaret Shauers (formerly of inkspot.com) at the Children's Writing Resource Center. Especially helpful to magazine writers.
Children's Writers' Submission Guidelines Online: features articles and guidelines for publishers and periodicals.
Coauthor Agreements from BookEnds -- LCC. Peek: "I'm here to tell you right now, this very minute, sit down and get something on paper. You don't need a lawyer to do it, you simply need wording you can both agree to."
Cold Hard Facts About the Writing Life and More Financial Truth by Laurie Halse Anderson from Mad Woman in the Forest. Peek: "...your take-home pay is around $12,5000.... for a year's worth of work. And remember: it's an advance against your royalties. Your book has to sell around 10,000 copies to pay your publisher back. (...the average middle grade or YA novel in America sells 5000 copies a year...)."
Conference Etiquette from BookEnds, LLC. Peek: "One of the reasons I advise against getting in touch with agents or submitting just before a conference is that for a lot of agents this puts them in an uncomfortable position. They feel that you’re expecting something they don’t want to give—usually feedback or more personal, detailed critiques than they would normally give." See also "How to Impress an Editor" from Down a Dusty Gravel Road.
Creating a Book Series: an Interview with Marietta Zacker, an agent with the Nancy Gallt Literary Agency, by Stephanie Greene from Through the Tollbooth. Peek: "The development of a series is usually much more organic than people imagine. That doesn't mean you shouldn't think of the infinite possibilities that exist with the characters and worlds you create, but always write as if that is the last time anyone will hear from those characters."
Decline letters 101 by Alvina Ling at Blue Rose Girls. Alvina breaks down the various degrees of feedback offered and what each means. Peek: "...if you think of decline letters as a stepping stone to publication, that may make receiving them that much easier."
Definitions for the Perplexed: Editorial Anonymous offers insights into the mysteries of such publishing issues as cast-off, galleys, ARCs, proofs, PPB, ISBNs. Peek: "So galleys are not like buckshot loaded into a shotgun, meant to be fired in the general direction of marketing opportunities. They are sent to the people who will very likely make a difference in the sales numbers. Try to remember this before you suggest that your publisher send you a couple hundred to pass out to your friends."
Definitions for the Perplexed: Royalties, Advances, and Earning Out from Editorial Anonymous. Peek: "An advance is an approximation of what the publisher thinks your book will earn you in royalties in (perhaps) a year."
Definitions for the Perplexed: Sell-In and Sell-Through from Editorial Anonymous. Peek: "It's a tough, tough business, and it's only tougher these days. Do everyone a favor and go buy a book, okay?"
Does Age Matter in Publishing? by Steph Bowe from Steph Bowe's Hey! Teenager of the Year. Peek: "Know that you won't be a different person when you get a book deal. You'll be a living the same life you live now, but with more responsibilities."
Do Small Press Credits Hurt My Chances? by Mary Kole from Kidlit.com. Peek: "Getting published with a small press won’t hurt your chances at getting an agent, as long as it’s not a small press that you, yourself, founded to be your self-publishing or vanity project. It won’t necessarily increase your chances, though, either, because..."
Editing versus Copyediting from Nathan Bransford - Literary Agent. Peek: "...before you go and amend the complaint to "What was the copyeditor doing," here's how this process works (actual process may vary, but this is one example)."
Glossary: book and publishing terminology from Harold Underdown at The Purple Crayon.
Hardcover Deep Discount Clause (and part two) from David Lubar. Peek: "This works out to 17 cents a book. Which means that a ton of books were sold at an even deeper discount than 50%. (In the interest of full disclosure, the hardcover earned a bit more than twice that.)"
Hardcover versus Paperback Debuts from Nathan Bransford - Literary Agent. Peek: "...a book that might have caught on as a paperback original could see a paperback run partially dashed if the hardcover doesn't do well."
Hardcover versus Paperback Redux from Justine Larbalestier. Peek: "Say you have a $10 pb, that's 60c per copy. If the advance was $20,000 you'd have sell more than 33,333 copies to earn out. If your hc retails for $17, you’d only have to sell 11,764 hard covers."
How Books are Made by Charles Stross from Charlie’s Diary.
How Long Does a Publisher Have Rights to My Book? by Deborah Halverson from DearEditor.com. Peek: "When you sign a contract, does the publisher get the rights to that book for its whole copyright time?"
How Long Does It Take to Sell a Novel? from Nathan Bransford of Curtis Brown.
How to Get a Publishing Internship (In Three Steps) by Emilia Plater from YA Highway. Peek: "The process of internship-getting wasn't easy or simple, but it was totally doable."
How to Prepare for Your One-on-One Critique: Insights from Editors and Authors by Gayle Jacobson-Huset from the Institute of Children's Literature.
"I'm published. What now?" from author Verla Kay's Web site. "A Web page devoted to the business end of being a published author." An extensive author/writing resource site.
Interview with Translator Laura Watkinson by Sarah Blake Johnson from Through the Tollbooth. Peek: "...if a foreign-language publisher is trying to sell something like a YA novel, it makes little financial sense for them to have the whole book translated and time is also an issue, so they'll usually have just an excerpt translated to take along to the book fair. An excerpt is typically around twenty pages...may be packaged with extra information about the author, such as a bibliography and perhaps an interview."
It Takes a Village to Acquire a Book from The World of Peachtree Publishers. Peek: "When a book is to be brought to an acquisitions meeting, it is made available to everyone in our office for review, and in turn, we fill out readers reports."
Kid Magazine Writers: a Web site for those who write for children's magazines, which includes market information (such as editor interviews), writing lifestyle issues, and craft.
Lee & Low New Voices Award: competition is open to picture book manuscripts no longer than 1,500 words by "writers of color" who are previously unpublished in the picture book.
Let's Talk About Luck by Justine Larbalestier. Here's a sneak peek: "It's true that the surest path to publication is to keep on writing and writing and writing. Then you have to keep submitting. It also helps if you're talented. Those are the facts. But there are a small percentage of people who just can’t get a break."
Note: Justine also references a couple of links of particular usefulness, The Real World Book Deal Descriptions from Whatever, and Getting Paid, Or Don't Quit Your Day Job, from Justine herself, (on advances and "earning out".)
Making Your Conference a Success from BookEnds, LLC. Here's a sneak peek: "I’ve learned from an agent's perspective what works and what doesn't. So here it is. My list of those things I've seen and those things I can recommend." See also Calling All Conference Organizers from Agent Kristin at Pub Rants.
Managing Expectations by Caroline Hickey at The Longstockings. "If you aren’t prepared for the reality of being an author, which often means working for many years on several books, slowly building an audience and a name and relationships with booksellers and librarians, and stomaching a lot of disappointments as you watch other new books come out and get more attention than yours, then you need to ask yourself if you really want to be a writer, or if you just want the cache of being published."
The Odds of Getting Published Stink and Why You Shouldn't Care by Harold Underdown from The Purple Crayon. Peek: "Those 8,000 manuscripts received by the publisher do not all have an equal chance of getting published. Of those 8,000, at least 7,500 are going to be rejected almost as soon as they are opened, as a reader notes poor writing of one kind or another, a type of manuscript that the publisher never publishes, or some other critical flaw."
Orphaned Manuscripts by Darcy Pattison from Darcy Pattison's Revision Notes. Here's a sneak peek: "The question is this: What happens to your manuscript/ book when the acquiring editor leaves?" Note: not a new post but too-often timely.
The Package of Services That Publishers Provide Authors and How This Is Changing by Nathan Bransford - Literary Agent. Peek: "Here are the basic services traditional publishers provide for an author, why these services matter, and how this is (and isn't) changing...."
Print On Demand Does Not Equal Instant Bookstore by Tracy Marchini from My VerboCity. Peek: "If the publisher retains print-on-demand rights, how many books does an author have to sell in order to make it worthwhile for the author?"
Publishing 101: What You Need to Know by Jerry D. Simmons from Writer's Digest. Peek: "Here's your step-by-step guide to the publishing process–how it works, why you need to know and how you can play an influential role in your book’s success." Source: April Henry.
Publishing in the 21st Century: The Ten Commandments of Courtesy by Richard Curtis (Part 1 and Part 2) from E-Reads. Peek: "In publishing, the rules governing behavior are codified into a system of protocol and etiquette called 'courtesy.' Courtesy is not always easy to define because editors, authors, and agents each have their own code and the three don't always harmonize."
Question of the Week Thursday: Dianne Ochiltree from Robin Friedman. On behalf of a reader, Robin asks: "Should I self-publish my children's book/memoir/self-help book/novel?"
Read My Rejection Letters! from author Dan Gutman. Offers insights into all the rejections that can go into creating a successful book. Gutman highlights exceprts from his numerous rejections of his award-wininng HONUS AND ME (Avon, 1997). Recommended for perspective.
Rising Above The Slush Pile With Verla Kay, a chatlog from the Institute of Children's Literature.
Revenge of the Children's Book Author by children's book author Carolyn Crimi. Scroll to read.
Rules for Not Making Editors Hate You from Editorial Ass.
Solicited! Queries That Make it Happen by Darcy Pattison.
So, What Happens During the Editorial Process? by Janet S. Fox from Through the Wardrobe. Peek: "The entire thing is a great deal more complicated than I’d thought. I knew there would be revisions--I love revisions! I'd already made a bunch of revisions with my agent. But this was something else. So here’s what happens..."
Surviving A Writer's Hard Times: A Conversation With Bruce Balan from Olswanger.com.
Tea Time at Annick Press: a new blog from "a small, independent publisher of books for kids and young adults." Based in Toronto, Vancouver, New York. See also the Annick Press official publisher site.
Terms to Know: Abbreviations by Eric from Pimp My Novel. Peek: "All industries are full of jargon, gentle readers, and publishing is no exception. To make it doubly confounding, however, many of these oft-repeated jargon-filled phrases are abbreviated or transformed into acronyms, which renders the proverbial (already murky) waters utterly opaque."
Terms to Know: Frontlist v. Backlist by Eric from Pimp My Novel.
There Are No Rules: a new blog from Writer's Digest Editorial Director Jane Friedman.
Top 10 Myths About E-Books from Nathan Bransford - Literary Agent. Peek: "...because e-books are (usually) much cheaper than print books, it doesn't take long before an e-reader pays for itself - since most hardcovers that sell for $25 or more are available for $9.99, all it takes is roughly 20 e-books for an e-reader to pay for itself."
Top Ten Myths About Our E-Book Future by Nathan Bransford from Curtis Brown. Peek: "The avalanche is already here. Go to Amazon and you'll find a million books for sale with more uploaded every day, and yet we're all still able to find the books we want to read."
Unsung Heroes of Publishing from Christine Kole MacLean. Short interviews with a book designer, copy editor, publicity director, indexer, Printz committee chairperson, and sales rep.
What Does It Mean That I'm in My Second Printing? by Moonrat at Editorial Ass. Peek: "Some of the box stores like Walmart or Costco come in with last-minute very large orders, and your publisher may have already printed without enough run-off to accommodate these large orders."
What Kind of Career Do You Want? by Mandy Hubbard. Peek: "The truth is, though, there are many kinds of careers. Do you want to be the Meg Cabot/James Patterson type, with a new book out every time I visit the store? Or do you prefer to be the John Green, with a book every 18 months or so? If you had to choose between Literary Acclaim and Bestseller status, which one would you choose?" Note: John, for example, has acclaim and is a best-seller, so ideally, you can pick both (to the extent such things can be controlled).
Working in Children's Books and the Recession of 2008-09 by Harold Underdown at The Purple Crayon. Peek: "What should you do, if you write or illustrate or edit or design or do any of the other jobs that keep our business running?"
Writing Advice: Money by Barry Lyga. Peek: "I get asked about money a lot -- how much do authors make? What percentage of the book's price comes back to the author? How do royalties work? Well, I'm going to try to de-mystify this voodoo a little bit."
Writing Is a Business by Lisa Shearin from The Magic District. Peek: "Before I was published, my deadlines were self-imposed, which meant that I could take all the time I wanted to make my manuscript as perfect as possible. Now, I essentially have nine months from typing that first word, to turning in a final manuscript to my editor. The deadlines are in your contract, so they might as well be graven in granite."