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The pandemic has hindered a lot of things in the publishing world. Book sales were not one of them.
Book sales have been the highest this year in comparison to the past eight years. However, these sales are flowing mostly through online sales due to the Pandemic. How are publishers planning to spread out those sales for 2021?
Bookshops and Booksales
This week Audible finally let creators know the changes they have decided on to address the concerns of Audiblegate. (Audible’s practice of promoting read and return audiobooks with no compensation to creators last year.) They are promising to create a new dashboard for authors to see which books have been returned and they are changing their terms of exclusivity. Publishing Perspectives asked Author groups what they thought. Not good enough was the answer. This is where the value of belonging to a strong writer’s union comes into play.
The Guardian recently published an article entitled Bookshops defy pandemic to record highest sales in eight years. After they published this they had to go and change the title to accurately reflect the article which was on Book Sales. Yes, bookshops were selling books but a lot of the print book sales were happening online. However, as the Society of Authors points out that’s cold comfort to a lot of writers who relied on appearances to pay the bills.
Publishing Perspectives interviewed the CEO of Wattpad on their merger with Korean digital publisher Naver. If you have been keeping an eye on Wattpad and how they have grown from a fanfic forum to a movie and television production powerhouse, their merger with Naver, who operates a similar model in Asia, is a good thing. The numbers are interesting. Together they will almost be as big as Netflix.
Big Five publishers are back in court for price fixing. Again. They are named as co- conspirators with Amazon. Publishing Perspectives looks at the case and whether it will hurt Amazon at all.
Kris Rusch writes this week about the rise of e-reading due to Covid-19 lockdowns and how Bertelsmann danced with the numbers trying to prove that there was a huge number of Indie publishers, so that they wouldn’t be slapped by regulators for controlling too much of the market by buying Simon and Schuster. As it is, they may have over 50% of the Trad publishers market.
The Alliance of Independent Authors has an interesting blog post on whether having your book in book shops is worth it for Indie Authors. With Trad Publishers used to getting books published in China for little cost they can use the sale or return option as a carrot for bookshops to stock their books. Indies using POD have higher costs per book which impacts on discounts to bookstores. This article breaks down the numbers and the cost benefit for Indies to use bookstores.
Anne R Allen has a great guest post from Joseph Perry, a literary attorney, on important clauses to take note of in a publishing contract. One thing to remember, Joseph says, is that the publishing contract is always written in favour of the publisher.
How often do you stare at your just completed hot mess of a manuscript and wonder how to tackle the revision aspect. Jean Grant has an interesting blog post where she breaks down the way she revises. Having a checklist of things to look out for is a good starting point.
5 mistakes writers make with relationships– Bang2Write
Understanding third person omniscient POV– Tiffany Martin
Using Twin Relationships in Writing– Becca Puglisi
5 point plan on how to kill a character– WritersWrite- Bookmark
Good Storytelling- Internal and external stakes– Karen Woodward- Bookmark
Heart centered Book Marketing– Beth Barany- Bookmark
Amazon Keywords 101– Penny Sansevieri
February Content ideas- Penny Sansevieri- Bookmark
How to get publicity for your book– Kaelyn Barron- Bookmark
What’s the deal with Amazon verified reviews- Sandra Beckwith
How to use Book Awards for publicity- Sandra Beckwith
Are you aware of time racing differently due to how engaged you are with a book? Have you struggled with narrative time? What about reader time? How does the reader experience the forward motion of your story? Writer Unboxed has a great article on Character Time and Reader Time and how you can make the most use of time in your manuscript.
Maureen Crisp has been writing her weekly publishing roundups for over seven years. She is a traditionally published children's author as well as indie-published. She lives in New Zealand and is heading the team organising the 4th National Conference of Children's Writers and Illustrators. She is currently trying her hand at writing a children’s book series if she can drag herself away from forever tweaking her Mars novel or obsessing over space.