Writer. Adventurer. Currently working on The Dreamless City, a series of steampunk novels and short stories.

More News from the Publishing Hinterlands

With the publishing industry changing so quickly, it is tough to stay abreast of the current news. With so much on my plate, I can’t keep up with it on a daily basis, but I do try to catch up once or twice a week. Here’s a few things that have happened or I discovered since the last time I perused the Internet.

Amazon Bought Goodreads

Last Thursday, Amazon and Goodreads announced the news of the recent acquisition. As for my two cents on this, Amazon just got stronger, and the indie-verse just got more corporate. I’ll let you read some news and opinions below and decide for yourself if this is good, bad, or ugly.

Goodreads – Exciting News About Goodreads: We’re Joining the Amazon Family!
CNET – Amazon Scoops Up Goodreads Social Network
Nathan Bransford – Amazon Acquired Goodreads
David Gaughran – Why Amazon’s Purchase of Goodreads Is a Good Thing
Misha Burnett – Why I’m Not Afraid of Amazon
Joe Konrath – Konrath Flip-Flops (an April Fool’s post)

Night Shade Books Negotiation with Skyhorse Publishing

If you have any desire to step into the book publishing world, either self-publishing or going the traditional route, I think this is an interesting story to follow. I continue to be amazed by the ins and outs of the industry… and all the ways authors can get screwed over if they don’t watch out.

Publishers Weekly – Struggling Indie SF Press, Night Shade, Pushes Asset Sale
Michael Stackpole – Night Shade Books/Skyhorse Publishing Deal: Why I’ll Take A Pass
Tobias Buckell – Nightshade Sale Super-Summary Post Roundup

Considering Self-Publishing

I think it is important to examine what you are doing and your reasons for it. If you are going to self-publish, you need a plan and you need a goal. Sometimes those don’t mesh, and it can leave a mess of an author for family and friends to clean up. To save everyone some time and meltdowns, here’s some recent articles that I found insightful.

Salon – I’m a Self-Publishing Failure (an April Fool’s post)
Chuck Wendig – When Self-Publishing Is Just Screaming Into The Void
Rachelle Gardner – Making a Living as a Writer – Part One
Rachelle Gardner – Making a Living as a Writer – Part Two

Certainly Not Least

John said it much better than I ever could.

John Scalzi – Roger Ebert, RIP

And while it is a bit more about photography than movies, I still enjoy the sentiments of this song.

24 comments on “More News from the Publishing Hinterlands

  1. katemsparkes
    April 5, 2013

    “I continue to be amazed by the ins and outs of the industry… and all the ways authors can get screwed over if they don’t watch out.”

    This is why I’m so confused. It’s not that the options are all good, it’s that you can be screwed over (or screw yourself over) really hard no matter what you do. Self-publishing is hard work, but you can’t depend on a traditional publisher to take care of you, either. When I posted on my internal debate most people seemed to think traditional publishing was still the way to go, but that industry increasingly seems like a bunch strangers in vans offering candy (in exchange for ALL OF YOUR RIGHTS FOREVER, or something like that).

    • tracycembor
      April 5, 2013

      Every time I consider going the traditional publishing route once my work in progress is complete, I discover horror stories like this. The publishing deal sounds good until you read the fine print.

      As an aside, I want to follow up on my post about Loyalty in Publishing. I don’t believe that the people who wrote that proposal didn’t know what they were doing. That’s a scam if I ever saw one. When the “professionals” in an industry pull crap like this, I feel justified in my feelings of distrust. Loyalty? Hah!!

      Strangers with candy indeed.

      • katemsparkes
        April 5, 2013

        It’s scary. It’s a big dark forest, and it’s hard to tell who’s the big bad wolf. :/

        Well, sometimes it’s obvious.

  2. mrschmoe
    April 5, 2013

    From the looks of it, getting published and self-published is tedious. There are many ways that an author or aspiring author can get screwed. Self-published authors have hurdles to get thru.

    • tracycembor
      April 5, 2013

      Work is hard, and people are out to eat your lunch. I would much rather self-publish and die by my own hand than trust a traditional publisher and get my throat slit in my sleep.

  3. beautycalyptique
    April 6, 2013

    I guess as soon something becomes an industry, it’s rather hard to maintain a “soul”, or the origin. and if then greed steps in, well *a suggestive peer to the world’s stock exchange districts*

    • tracycembor
      April 8, 2013

      It is a question of business ethics, I guess. At what point do you stop abusing your product suppliers and treat them like partners? Or do you keep bleeding them dry and dropping them once they are tapped out for a fresh supply?

      • beautycalyptique
        April 10, 2013

        I agree – I was just saying that as soon as things GROW, ethics seem to fail some people. some can’t handle growth without, quite as you said, abusing partners and forcing them in the sadly well-known manner of “hey, YOU want to do business with US so here’s the rules”.

  4. Arlene
    April 6, 2013

    What a great post – and will be so helpful as I step oh so gingerly onto the path of publishing (eventually). I will definitely be referring back to this post. Thanks for putting all of this information together.

    • tracycembor
      April 8, 2013

      Glad I had a chance to share. Good luck with your writing endeavors! Let us know how it goes.

  5. VarVau
    April 7, 2013

    Either way is difficult unless you already have an in. The state of publishing now being in distress between the newer digital formats vs established methods (including Amazon’s childish marketing propaganda against the Big Six with its Kindle Author “success stories” which never tell you what the so-called rejected author did WRONG to be rejected by X number of agents for X number of years) and who’s, what’s doing where’s and why’s and who’s again–it doesn’t help any writer in knowing which way to go.

    All I can say is if you go traditional, an agent is a must because they know these contracts in and out. A writer should NEVER approach a traditional publisher without one.

    • tracycembor
      April 8, 2013

      Yeah, I don’t really like the games Amazon is playing. If you can’t see how something they are doing is in their best interests, start worrying. The other shoe will drop eventually.

      And I agree one thousand percent, I would never get into bed with a traditional publisher without a bulldog of an agent looking our for me.

  6. ericjbaker
    April 7, 2013

    definitely a bookmark-worthy post.

    • tracycembor
      April 8, 2013

      Aww, shucks. I just read a bunch when I have time. Glad you found the links useful.

  7. Michelle M. Welch
    April 9, 2013

    Thanks for the follow, Tracy. And what a big job, pulling together all these links! I have trouble keeping up with all the news and I don’t even have the toddler or the grad school to worry about. Good luck to you!

    • tracycembor
      June 5, 2013

      Glad you enjoyed the links. :D When I do have time to go through the publishing news, I figure it is worth sharing with my friends too.

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    May 28, 2013

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    • tracycembor
      June 5, 2013

      Please feel free to stop back by anytime. I try to have enteresting updates most days. I’m just about ready to wrap up my collaborative short story project this week.

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    • tracycembor
      June 5, 2013

      Thanks for stopping by! I’m glad you enjoyed the post and appreciate your warm words of encouragement. :D You’re welcome to stumble back over here anytime!

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This entry was posted on April 5, 2013 by in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , .

Posting Schedule for 2014-15

Monday through Friday I will be posting about writing as business and craft, the science of creativity, all things steampunk, and progress on The Dreamless City.

Weekends are reserved for my Music Playlist.

Writers of the Future Honorable Mention

About the Author

Tracy Cembor attempts to juggle a preschooler and a baby, a full-time job, random geekery, and the writing life. Currently working on The Dreamless City, a steampunk urban fantasy novel. Come join the adventure.
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