Monday, February 28, 2011
Karla Nellenbach and her brother and sister pups, Samson and Nickels, who saved the bunny from the owls (it was an animal-filled story!)
Here they are:
Samson is one brave dog to take on a mess of owls! Most owls are bigger than me, so I wouldn't even try--in fact, is Samson looking for a job? Because I'm about the size of a bunny, and I need protection!
Read Samson's story and all of the rest in the comments here. There were some really great stories of rescue, daring and bravery. All of these dog's and their owners would LOVE Tam in A DOG'S WAY HOME. So even if you didn't win, I highly suggest you pick up a copy! It hit the shelves last week. You can buy it here, here, or here. Go!
Now it's time to meet some of my other new friends!
This is Kaffi. She was rescued by her owner at a rest stop while on vacation. She was part chihuahua like me! You can read her full story in the link above. Her owner Kelley is a hero in my book!
This here is a surfing pup named )(urley! She can hang twenty, ride the waves, and she's also got a killer sleepy face (see below). I can swim, but I've never tried surfing!
On Wed we'll meet Cody, Kal, Sera and Bolt! So stay tuned for more doggie pics.
And just because we love the book so darn much, we'll announce a new winner of A DOG'S WAY HOME on Wednesday! That's right--two winners. We chihuahuas can be very giving.
Sunday, February 27, 2011
Saturday, February 26, 2011
Friday, February 25, 2011
Well, PeeWee and I received so many dog pics, that we're working on an epic post to announce the winner. I wanted to announce by last night, but I haven't been able to nail PeeWee down (he's got a very busy schedule). So look for our doggie post this weekend!
To distract you until then, check out Lee Nichols' shiny new book trailer for DECEPTION, the first book in her Haunting Emma series! It rocks--and it's perfect timing, too, since BETRAYAL hits the shelves next week!
And if you haven't checked out Lee's Blog yet, DO. She's running awesome contests that include an iTunes gift cards giveaway!
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Monday, February 21, 2011
- If you're afraid your inbox will be flooded: get over yourself. We're talking about serendipity here...it's not going to happen every day.
- Be smart. Physical addresses and phone numbers? No.
- "Contact Me" forms are handy...but if a longer message needs to be sent, it's just going to annoy you (those forms remove paragraphs). Just put your email somewhere!
- I am indifferent between "Contact Me" tabs or putting the info someplace in the sidebar. Or even just having it in your larger profile (on blogger, etc.)
Friday, February 18, 2011
So, we’ve covered the “revolution,” the chains, and the new mindset agents, authors and editors should be looking to adopt as digital products take the stage. What does it mean, practically, for authors and their representatives?
It means doing more than writing a book, unfortunately. Agents frequently say to their authors “You write the book. Leave the rest to me.” That’s partly truth and partly left over from when publishers shouldered the brunt of publication, including promotion and marketing. Stuff that now falls almost completely to the agents and authors—both have had to diversify from “selling the book” or just “writing the book.”
Consider digital the next wave of responsibility reverting to the agents and authors. We’ve learned to get online, create buzz, and keep selling the book after it’s “sold” in the traditional sense of an agent’s job. That’s largely back-end stuff, post-pub. Now we have to add some front-end stuff. We’ve got to think about the book plus, the PPP, from the get-go.
That doesn’t mean that authors come in with set-in-stone demands on the digital avenues they want to take, any more than they should come in having designed their own cover. But it means giving apps, etc thought. Ideas. Having started a blog. Even fiction authors should have an eye toward platform.
I’ve heard people say that the migration of responsibility from publisher back to author is “unfair.” Like we should hate publishers because they don’t send all authors out on book tours like they did in the Golden Days. And where did all the scotch and cigars go?!
That’s ridiculous. Not only have challenges facing publishers changed, but the way books are sold have too. Book tours? Not the best way to make $$ on books (but that’s another blog post). Marketing and promotion are now grassroots—getting the word out online has to have a voice. The author’s voice.
Authors can’t just “be artistes” anymore, just like agents have to find time to act as publicists (among other things). Your first job is to write the book, but your job doesn’t end once you type “fin” and land an agent. Not by a long shot. Bummer, because most authors have full-time lives outside of writing. But these days embarking on the publication journey means being willing and able to take on the front- and back-end responsibilities. They’re no longer optional.
Thanks for following the series, everyone. You’ve all made great points and asked great questions in the comments—those have become fodder for future discussions.
Then go HERE.
Thursday, February 17, 2011
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
150 years has given publishing a certain efficiency. There are snafus, but we know that a manuscript is going to come in, there’ll be a contract, some more stuff will happen, and there will be a book at the end. (“Book,” here, includes verbatim electronic versions—ebooks).
That model is comfortable. The new environment isn’t; it’s totally different technology from what we’ve been dealing with for centuries.
But I propose getting over that. When a manuscript is read to go on submission, the agent has to start thinking about the potential package of products: PPP.
What should be sold to the editor? What should be taken elsewhere for development? What should be developed in-house? None of these questions can be answered without thinking about what the book could be—in physical and digital form.
Most agents still negotiate based on selling The Book, not on selling the PPP. With a comprehensive plan (design outlines for apps, ideas for revenue splits—without, of course, tipping one’s hand completely) the publisher is a lot more likely to insert language that allows for specific project(s), even if they refuse to fork over whole clauses (The Audio Clause, The Multimedia Clause).
Voila. Now we can all just get along, right? We just have to ask about specific applications for audio rights, and they’ll GIVE THEM TO US!!
Well, probably not. It’s not going to be that easy, and the majority of innovations are probably not going to come through the Big Six because they really do have corporate mandates that say there’s no deal without, say, audio rights. (Bummerrrrr!)
But that’s no reason to keep banging our heads into the same Book first, other-stuff-later-maybe-if-we-get-to-it-and-it-stops-being-so-scary wall.
Think outside the book.
Monday, February 14, 2011
Last time I introduced this series, about the ways that digital possibilities affect the way publishing operates. This time, I
bemoan ridicule discuss some of the things that are holding us back from getting excited about it.
Contracts. Contract language. One of the top reasons writers need agents. (The others being: so you have someone to whom to send cupcakes, for their
rolodexes Gmail contact list. Psychotherpay. A drinking buddy.)
Contracts are evil, vicious things. They are tangled webs of nasty waiting to snag writers by their skipping feet and drag them to a rightsless hell. Boilerplates, negotiated between a publishing house and an agency, form the bedrock of all deals done between those entities. BedROCK. It’s not flexible. That was okay before. But the digital stuff doesn’t lend itself to rigid definitions like, say, foreign translation rights (involving a specific language and a specific territory).
Yet when people start talking about apps and ebooks, rights and contract language are pretty much the first topic of interest. How do we define “multimedia rights,” for instance, so that there is a boilerplate-ready understanding of what one sells when they fork over the multimedia right clause? It’s a serious (hopeless?)
pain in the ass undertaking.
Even defining ebooks vs. apps vs. enhanced ebooks is contentious. What differentiates them? How much of the original content blahblahblah I’m bored with this conversation.
Who cares what “multimedia rights” “really” "MEAN""?" (yes, I'm mocking your quotey fingers) It clearly has no intrinsic meaning. It’s a catchall, and it's not functional anymore. Let it go. (See? Psychotherapy)
The cool stuff that can be done with books today is literally boundless. An idea that used to have a terminal life as one thing: a book (nothing wrong with that, put the pitchfork down) can be reincarnated. It means we are going to have to treat every contract like it’s new. We’ll be adapting the language every time to accommodate the plan for each project. Publishers are playing hardball, so it's going to be hard. That’s okay, guys.
We've got to make a plan for each project (topic of the next post, on Wednesday) and get educated on these technologies. It’s a lot of information. But so was learning all the Big Six imprints. If agents are going to continue to advocate well for authors, it means knowing about this stuff, or knowing the people who do. Let’s drop the semantic debates and get started.
Sunday, February 13, 2011
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Jeffrey Eugenides' first novel in nine years (and his first since the Pulitzer Prize winner MIDDLESEX) will be published by FSG in October. Catalog copy describes THE MARRIAGE PLOT, focused on a college senior in a love triangle, as "a brilliant, funny, and heartbreaking novel about the glories and vicissitudes of young love," with the 576-page novel priced as a $28 hardcover.
Sunday, February 6, 2011
Seriously, the virus that went around our office was No. Joke. While I was sick, PeeWee was such a sweetie. He made sure to keep me company. He even slept when I slept (see?):
And when I was too weak to read myself, PeeWee read to me. And he has a new favorite book. It's called A Dog's Way Home by Bobbie Pyron.
For anyone who is a dog owner, knows a dog owner, or just for anyone who loves dogs READ. THIS. There may be a few tears (okay, maybe a lot of tears), but you will fall in love with Tam. Tam is a Shetland who gets separated from his owner, a little girl named Abby, when their family gets into a car accident somewhere along the Blue Ridge mountains. And everyone believes that they'll never see Tam again. Everyone but Abby. This story is their journey. I won't say anything more because I don't want to ruin it!
When PeeWee and I were done reading, I made sure that Suzie read this one with her pups, too. And now Tam has at least 5 fans from Confessions! There will be more, I have no doubt :-)
So. PeeWee, generous as he is, has decided to give up his precious copy of A Dog's Way Home to share with one of you. (He also threatened an ankle-biting if I don't buy him another copy when this is all over.)
The contest is simple. Just share a dog story in the Comments below. A funny one. A touching one. A sad one--whatever you want to share. Me and PeeWee love to meet other dogs, so please introduce us! That's ALL you need to do to enter. The winner will get a copy of the book, and a shout out on the blog.
Entries will be accepted until February 22, 11:59pm EST. This is the pub date for the book!
As a side request (this is NOT a contest rule)--whether or not you enter the contest, I'd love to see pics of your pups! Please send photos to PeeWee(at)nancycoffeyliterary(dot)com and we will post them when we announce the winner. We'll need your name, your dog's name, and a photo.
Okay. Back to prepping for the Super Bowl. PeeWee's already dressed. As you can see, he's not a Steelers or a Packers fan.....
Thursday, February 3, 2011
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
How to Query To see a pretty simple breakdown of what you need and how it's different for fiction, memoir, and non-fiction go here . ...
First Page Shooter critiques the first 250 words of fiction manuscripts (middle grade to adult, all genres). You have to send the pages for...
On Suzie's Wishlist MG I'm looking for all things middle grade. I'm especially looking for high concept literary middle gra...
BEFORE you send your first 250 words to First Page Shooter, please read these directions. 1. Read how First Page Shooter Works. 2. Think...
There are so many resources out there for writers. Industry blogs, forums and websites comparing agents, advice from writers. But it occurr...
It's August, I'm back from vacation, and I think the end of 2013 is going to be even better than the beginning. So my question t...
Yesterday, the fabulous Mindee Arnett posted her query as well as some query tips which she felt helped her find me and get my attention. ...
I imagine most agents start the way I did, and by that I mean eager and wide eyed, ready to dive into the slush pile and find The Next Big T...
After finishing The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold, I felt awestruck by her brilliant writing ability. She spun a haunting and heartbreaking...
I opened my email this weekend and found a question from a writer--one that a lot of people are probably asking. I am a follower of your b...
Five Random Things About Suzie
2. I'm legitimately nocturnal (or a vampire). I will be so exhausted at two pm that I'm falling asleep standing up - it has happened before, at Six Flags no less - but as soon as the sun goes down I'm wide awake.
3. I have a gorgeous unused $6000 Reem Acra wedding dress hanging in my closet, and it showed up on my doorstep the same day my (now ex) fiance broke up with me. And thank God for that. I wouldn't have wanted to waste that dress on him.
4. Social anxiety plagues me daily. I write a script and practice in front of the mirror when I have to make a phone call, but most people who interact with me have no idea how nervous I am (or perhaps they lie) because I've worked so hard to try to overcome it.
5. I'm actually worried that I will never love my children (when I do have them in the far off future) as much as I love my dogs. I just like animals better than people - they're sweet and innocent and soft and furry - is that so wrong?