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Publishing News Roundup Series: Why Passion Is Important in Publishing

by Maureen Crisp •  September 12, 2016  •   Follow

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The one thing all of us publishing professionals all have in common is passion.

Writing is passion. Reading is passion. Editing is passion. And we all have to have passion to work with books. Passion is in the blood of art, and without it writing wouldn’t have the importance of affect that it does. With writing we need to be extremely passionate, and with that comes a bit of madness. But madness makes passion, and passion makes perfect-writing that is.


Being Mad Helps

Pic: Boris Karloff in Frankenstein (1931)


This week has been financial reporting week for some of the big publishers. Oh the tangled web of eBooks and Print Books. Is one cannibalizing the other? Pundits pored over the statistics. The Financial Review looked at the state of the publishing industry.


Mike Shatzkin has a brilliant post on the state of play with publishers still sticking to their plan of high eBook prices. Mike shows why he thinks this is a short sighted idea. The comments on this article were fast and fascinating with people discussing buying habits. Do you wait for a sale or buy an $11.99 eBook?


Gladdening the heart of Publishing warriors everywhere was the nice little snapshot of Author Earnings ISBN acquisitions. They are in decline. So was this why PRH cut them loose?


How often do you write what you want to write? How often does your editor get cold feet or ask you to tone it down. Or you get cold feet and tone it down first. This week K.C Alexander took over Chuck’s blog to talk about how she was tired of having her characters toned down, as not fitting a perceived feminine model… and things were about to change. This is an excellent post on courage and truth to your writing.


Kris Kathryn Rusch has been putting together an anthology of the early women writers in SFF. She explains how she came to be involved in the project. It all stemmed from being told that women were discriminated against in Science Fiction. Women of a certain age are ignored and their work disappears… so what do you do. You get MAD and then you become a force…


Kris was about to post the last article in her Dealbreakers series when she heard about the demand by Hachette for the advance back from Seth Grahame-Smith over the Pride and Prejudice and Zombies series. It’s big money and the contract is murky. This is a must read post as Kris explains. The contract is available to read and it is scary. The author was not the most important party in this contract. They weren’t even second…


In The Craft Section,
Using contractions in dialogue– K M Weiland- Bookmark
How to create strong character arcs– Sean Platt and Jonny B Truant- Bookmark
Avoiding book publishing blunders – The Book Designer- A great all round article!
Writing setting descriptions – James Scott Bell – Bookmark
In The Marketing Section,
10 tips to get book reviews– Anne R Allen- Bookmark
How authors can work together to promote– Janice Hardy- Bookmark


To Finish,
LitHub is an interesting website that publishes long form interviews and articles. Today they published an article on Nan Talese, an editor with her own imprint at Knopf Doubleday. It is a fascinating look through her life in publishing from editing Hemingway to working with Simon Tolkein.  

You have to be a little bit mad and passionate to write and work in publishing.


About Maureen Crisp

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.