Bon Voyage — or A New Adventure?

On Monday, Barbour Publishing informed the industry that they will be discontinuing their Heartsong Presents imprint. After 18 years and 1,000 titles, it will end its run in December 2011. Publishing has always been fluid. Steve Laube says that it is important to stay flexible because “A publisher can dramatically change directions after a meeting on Tuesday.”

I never thought Heartsong Presents, a line for which I proudly wrote, would collapse. Ever. But their line isn’t the first. Remember, for instance, Palisades? Or Alabaster? Both of those romance imprints were published by Multnomah but abruptly disappeared. Or the Three Rivers imprint or the Jan Dennis imprint at Thomas Nelson (both of which ended on the same day in the 80s). Many times a writer has been waylaid as these situations changed for them, sometimes in mid-contract.

If you are an author whose line has been discontinued, you must summon the courage to take the next step. This is where your agent can be invaluable. 

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The Wrong Point-of-View

Last week we identified Point-of-View (POV). This week, let’s consider some common POV misteps.

What’s My Line?: When POV/voice doesn’t fit the character.

Here’s an example. The POV character is male and a construction worker. So is the following appropriate for his POV?

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News You Can Use

The Publishers Who Lost the Most When Border’s Closed – The next time you criticize “traditional publishers” for their seemingly high prices and slow adoption of new technology, remember this list. Penguin/Putnam lost $41 million when Borders went bankrupt. Ouch.

Twenty-five Rejection Proof Markets – A clever article by James Watkins. I like #24. Proof that I can remain rejection free.

Author A.L. Kennedy on Book Tours – Interesting perspective from the UK.

A Library is a Wonderful Thing – Read these fun letters celebrating the opening of a new library.

What makes a Platform? – In case you missed it, recently Mike Hyatt wrote this great article about the benefits of building a platform.

20 Most Awe Inspiring Writer’s Rooms – Do you have one to rival these? (By the way, #15 would drive me crazy.)

 

 

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Out of Their Minds: The basics of point-of-view

Ever been reading a novel, cooking along with the character, when you realize you’re not seeing things through that character’s eyes any longer? Somewhere along the way, something shifted and you’re inside a different character’s head. Jarring, huh? Probably jolted you out of the story, if only for a few seconds while you figured out what happened.

That, my friends, is what you want to avoid at all costs: Bumping your reader out of the story. Because once they’re out, any number of things can pull them away before they get back in.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at Point of view. First, what is POV (point of view)? Anyone? Yes! That’s exactly right. (Hey, I’m a novelist too, remember? If I want to hear my imaginary class answering me, I can.”) Point of view is the “eyes” through which we’re seeing the story.

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News You Can Use

Winnie the Pooh’s Cultural Dominance – A great slide show of the history of A.A. Milne’s character growing into a phenomenon. Did you know he sold the rights to Pooh in 1931 for $1,000 and a % of licensing fees? Today the licensing generates $5.6 billion in annual revenue. Wow.

Free Magazine on Writing – The July issue of the American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA).

Agent Andrew Wylie Stirs Things Up – Wylie capitalizes on the horrific situation at NewsCorp (parent company to HarperCollins) to toss some bombshells into their camp.

Wrestling with Writers Block? – Bob Spear provides some great advice.

Is Your Work Being Plagiarized on the Internet? – This is an excellent article with critical tools to determine if your work is being stolen.

What is the Best Time to Post Your Blog? – See this fascinating infographic. Does it match with your best practices?

The graphic can be found at Kissmetrics.

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More Convention Highlights!

As you know from reading our own Steve Laube’s excellent insights on this blog about ICRS, the days were busy, exciting, and invigorating. The convention confirmed our optimism about Christian publishing’s bright future.

I’ve been to the convention a number of times and have always been blessed. This year, it took place in Atlanta, a lovely city that offers hot, sunny, humid weather. My biggest challenge was trying to keep my hair presentable.

A writer following ICRS news would think this event has shrunk to nothing, but in fact, the Convention Center overflowed with exhibitors. All total, 21 writers from The Steve Laube Agency were in attendance.

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Convention Time!

by Steve Laube

Last week was the 2011 International Christian Retailing Show (ICRS) in Atlanta, Georgia. Tamela Hancock Murray and I  had a busy time. Statistics released declared that professional attendance was up 9.7% to 1,748, primarily representing buyers. Total attendance was up 5.83% to 4,918. International attendance was up 16.17% to 431 attendees from 61 countries.

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Special Announcement

 

Congratulations to Kathi Macias, author of Red Ink (New Hope Publishers) for being given the 2011 Golden Scroll book award for Novel of the Year presented by the Advance Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA). This is a tremendous honor.
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We are also thrilled to announce that seven of our agency’s clients have been named as finalists for the Carol Award presented by the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW).

Congratulations to:

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