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February 2009 - Writers Magazine

News Review

  • The number of new books published in the UK increased by 4% last year to 120,947, with English language books published worldwide increasing by a whopping 31% to 381,250. News Review looks at what lies behind these figures.

  • Amazon has just delivered some sparkling results against a background of retail collapsing. What next for the Kindle and what does this domination mean for the book business? News Review investigates.

  • This week's News Review looks at book discounting, actually higher in the UK in 2008 than 2007 - and asks whether it's a danger or an opportunity.

  • So who are the most popular fiction writers across the globe? News Review looks at a new study which shows that Ken Follett and Khaled Hosseini feature in more bestseller lists than any other writers in the nine countries studied.

  • Children’s books are still doing well in spite of the recession. News Review looks at what's working and some publicly-funded UK programmes which are making a difference.

Comment

  • 'People will compare the fresh, untainted voice of my 29-year old self that was completely unselfconscious about writing (it) because I didn’t think anyone was going to read it.  It was innocent, it wasn't trying to be anything, it just was.' Lisa Jewell, author of Ralph's Party, in the Bookseller on working with a new editor and writing a sequel.

  • 'Across the millennia, the author is speaking, clearly and silently, inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people, citizens of distant epochs, who never knew one another.' Carl Sagan

  • 'Times Books as we know it will be no more, but books themselves, thankfully, seem shockproof against change.  Neither economics nor e-readers will oust the beloved book. We don't stop reading because we are poor, any more than book lovers will give up books for their electronic lookalikes.' Jeanette Winterson, in her& final column in Times Books.

  • 'Through today’s gloom we may discern a spectacularly bright future in which the rewards to writers and readers and even to publishers will be unprecedented as world-wide multilingual backlists expand online in a cultural revolution orders of magnitude greater than Gutenberg’s world-changing technology generated five centuries ago.’ Jason Epstein, author of Book Business

  • 'The heart and soul of any publishing business is its editorial department, the men and women who, crudely, acquire the 'content' on which the imprint depends...  Gone are the days, with rare exceptions, when an editor's positive enthusiasm for a new book could trump the negative anxieties of the sales department, almost the only books that now generate much excitement among publishers are would-be bestsellers.  Robert McCrum in the Observer

Writers' Quote

'If you can't annoy somebody with what you write, I think there's little point in writing.'
Kingsley Amis

Tips for Writers 7

The seventh set of our new pages of tips for writers deals with the importance of keeping up to date with what's going on in the book world and how to do this.

Tips for Writers 1: Improving your writing

Tips for Writers 2: Learning on the job

Tips for Writers 3: New technology and the Internet

Tips for Writers 4: Self-publishing - is it for you?

Tips for Writers 5: Promoting your writing (and yourself)

Tips for Writers 6: Keep up to date

International Book Fairs 2009

Our annual updated listing of the world's book fairs is now available on the site.

T S Eliot Prize for Poetry

Winner announced - an interesting outsider winning with just her second collection.

Canoeing

How to market your writing services online

Ghostwriter Joanne PhillipsUK-based freelance writer and ghostwriter. She has had articles published in national writing magazines, and has ghostwritten books on subjects as diverse as hairdressing and keeping chickens. Visit her at www.joannephillips.co.uk shows you how you can market yourself online through your own website, optimisation, ezines and freelance writing websites.  Essential reading for any writer who wants to promote themself on the web.

We have an article on Copyright in ourInside Publishing series and our article Print on demand and the Long Tail in Changes in Publishing.

Choosing a Service

Are you having difficulty deciding which service might be right for you?  This useful new article by Chris HolifieldChris HolifieldManaging director of WritersServices; spent working life in publishing,employed by everything from global corporations to start-ups; track record includes: editorial director of Sphere Books, publishing director of The Bodley Head, publishing director for start-up of upmarket book club, The Softback Preview, editorial director of Britain’s biggest book club group, BCA, and, most recently, deputy MD and publisher of Cassell & Co. She is also currently the Director of the Poetry Book Society; During all of this time aware of problems faced by writers, as publishing changed from idiosyncratic cottage industry, 'occupation for gentlemen', into corporate business of today. Writers encountered increasing difficulty in getting books edited or published. Authors create the books which are the raw material for the whole business. She believes it is time to bring them back to centre stage. offers advice on what to go for, depending on what stage you are at with your writing.

Help for Writers

Check out this page to find links to the huge number of useful articles on this site, including Finding an Agent and Making Submissions.

 

 

Our Editorial Services for writers

Check out the 16 different editorial services we offer, from Reports to Copy editing, Typing to Rewriting.

New Categories series

Writing Romance

This is the third article in a new series by Chris HolifieldChris HolifieldManaging director of WritersServices; spent working life in publishing,employed by everything from global corporations to start-ups; track record includes: editorial director of Sphere Books, publishing director of The Bodley Head, publishing director for start-up of upmarket book club, The Softback Preview, editorial director of Britain’s biggest book club group, BCA, and, most recently, deputy MD and publisher of Cassell & Co. She is also currently the Director of the Poetry Book Society; During all of this time aware of problems faced by writers, as publishing changed from idiosyncratic cottage industry, 'occupation for gentlemen', into corporate business of today. Writers encountered increasing difficulty in getting books edited or published. Authors create the books which are the raw material for the whole business. She believes it is time to bring them back to centre stage. which will cover the major writing genres. It looks at romance, which is dominated in the UK and the US by Mills and Boon Harlequin, which brings out 120 books a month.  Study their guidelines before you get started or at least before you submit to them.

Writing Science Fiction and Fantasy looks at Science Fiction and Fantasy and suggests how you should get started, what special considerations you should bear in mind and what the market's like.

Writing Crime Fiction looks at the international market for crime novels and shows what is working for this readership and how you can give your own crime fiction its best chance of getting published.

Agents' Listings

The new agents' listings are now available on the site. Coming from the 2009 Writers' and Artists' Yearbook, these listings can be searched and provide the most up-to-date information about literary agents across the world:

UK agents

US agents

Agents from the rest of the world

Children's specialist agents

Writers' and Artists' Yearbook 2009

Our review of the Writers' and Artists' Yearbook

Changes in the book trade

This new series by Chris Holifield looks at the book trade and investigates how fundamental changes in how it works are affecting writers.

The first article is on Bookselling, the second on Publishing, the third on Print on demand, the fourth on Self-publishing - 'really great' or career suicide?, the fifth on Writers' routes to their audiences, the sixth at at copyright under pressure and the seventh deals with Creative Commons.



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