Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Insecure Writer's Support Group

Time for the first post of this year for the Insecure Writer's Support Group hosted by Alex J. Cavanaugh. 2012 wow!

As a kid I thought we would all be flying in our cars by now!  I guess we haven't figured that out yet, but I never imagined a day when books (I mean paper books) would be old fashioned.  I loved holding a book in my hands and carefully turning the pages.  I had one fairy tale book with golden edges that I thought was a treasure.  I even loved writing on paper, actually I still do.  The way the pen glides across the page embellishing the empty space with its graceful tracings, like a skater making figures on the ice, is magical to me.

But we must change with the times and e-readers are definitely here to stay.   According to the Los Angeles Times blog, Kindles are Amazon's #1 item sold.  I even got one for Christmas!

How does this change what we do as writers?  Does it depend on your genre?

I've been trying to break into the picture book market for a long time.  Are my stories verbal garbage or have I ended up in the slush pile simply because of the old fashioned publishing machine which takes 6 months to get back to you?  Yet until 5 year olds start purchasing their own e-books, I don't see self publishing an e-book picture book as a great alternative.

Teen and adult novels seem like a better e-book market.  3 out of the top 20 best selling e-books in the Kindle Store were self-published and 2 more were from an Amazon imprint.  So when my novel is completed and ready to send out do I skip the waiting game played by traditional houses and go straight to the  Kindle Store?

I always dreamed of holding my own book in my hands someday and seeing it on the shelves at Barnes and Noble.  Is it realistic to want to hold my book?  Maybe I'll have to just order my own POD copy.

How are you dealing with the new face of publishing?  Are you still attempting the traditional route first?  And does the genre matter?  Any ideas?

Head on over to Alex's blog to check out all the other great posts for the group.



  1. I still love books. I love my Kindle, though, largely because it is less expensive to just give something a try. And it is FREE when author friends pass things to me (free to both me and them) so it's been a GREAT reviewing tool.

    I think the iPad is color and kid friendly--THAT might work as a VERSION of a picture book. But I think you are right--still shooting for primarily traditional. As for the other publishing... I don't have the same bias against ENDING UP self-published (I think the decision should be based on goals and genre) but i think the process (querying, submitting to publishers) really does improve the work. I also think if someone self-publishes, they need a professional editor or it shows. Some small publishers, though, do primarily or only eBooks and THAT is I believe a really nice compromise. eBooks have also reintroduced the 'novella' as an option. For hard copy, it just isn't great from an 'economy of scales' point of view, but with eBooks, because there is no formal typesetting and binding and such, it works well.

  2. I do love my Kindle, but I'll admit I want to see my name on a print book too. I think the best thing is to explore all the paths of publication and find what works best for you. For some, that'll be self-publishing. Others, a small publisher or a traditional publisher.

    They are slowly coming out with more ereaders that are very friendly to kids and picture books. I recently read my first graphic novel on my Kindle Fire the other day, and it was pretty awesome. :)

  3. I haven't actually tried a Kindle yet. I can't get past the horrible thought that my library could disappear with a blip of technology... The thought is horrifying!

    I think that e-books in the youth market will probably start at YA, realistically... picture books for young kids are still going to be very important. But what do I know? Maybe they really are building infant/under 5 year old proof technology? It's more the "self-publish vs. traditional publish" route that I keep considering. I think with the decline of the mega-bookstore, the door is opening for more people to make their voices heard... and that traditional publishers are going to have to recognize that if they want to keep a share in the market.

    Thanks for dropping in to comment on my blog :)

  4. Hart Johnson- Maybe the iPad will be a good platform for PBs. You're right about the whole process of improvement with submissions, it just gets frustrating after a while.

    Cherie- I'll have to check out the PB layout on my Kindle and see what they look like.

    Fairbetty- I know my 7 year old would love to do everything on an iPad or Kindle!

    Thanks for the comments!

  5. I have a Nook, and I love it, but I still buy 'real' books, too. Especially picture books! I want my kids to be able to carry their books around, take them to bed with them, etc. So, unless I want to buy four ereaders, real books it is. :)
    Good luck which ever path you take!

  6. Like you, I resisted ereaders. Now that I own a Kindle, I can't imagine reading any other way!

    As for ordering a POD copy of your books, take a quick peek at my blog post on the amazing Espresso Book Machine ( They're everywhere and can print your book (or mine) in minutes.

    Technology is a writer's friend. It's a super time to be an author.

    Btw, I'm a new follower...tag, you're it!

  7. I would like to go the traditional route, but am not at all opposed to the self-publishing route. I love the ereaders - it is great for reluctant readers and is making more readers out of people who normally fought it. Great post - new follower :)

  8. Publishing is definitely changing and going more and more techie. Hard to say what that will mean for the future. I like the flying car reference though...I too thought those would be here:)

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  10. Sorry about that - major typo!

    I have to admit, I'm sold on eBooks. Every since I got my iPad, I haven't purchased any physical books. And after the eBook version of my own book hit Amazon's Best Seller chart last fall, I am beyond sold. I do like having a physical copy of it though. Hopefully it's a while before my publisher switches over completely.

  11. I can't decide on which I like better. I don't have an ereader, but I totally want one. And the library is my best friend because I just can't afford to buy every single book I want. But I do love seeing my bookshelf full of printed books, but I also snag my dad's Kindle and will sit and read books I can't find at the library or that I have to wait weeks for someone to check it back in.

    Agh! See, can't make up my mind. As a writer though, there has to be something incredibly special when you see your book sitting next to (well, if it was me, it would be next to Brandon Mull's Beyonders in the MG section) at Barnes and Noble. But there's also something very special about seeing it on Amazon too. :)

  12. I got a Kindle for Christmas, and I'm surprised I like it as much as I do. But I do prefer a REAL book :)

    I'm so excited to see you as part of the character blogfest. Thanks for joining!