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What's New in 2023

May 2023

22 May 2023 - What's new

May 2023

8 May 2023 - What's new

May 2023
  • 'There isn't always a correlation between the greatest works of fiction and the biggest sellers. If that was the case, David Almond would be selling a million copies. Sometimes it's a happy coincidence that something you're working on seems to be doing well elsewhere. But I try not to join the dots, because the single most important thing is writing the book that you want. That's what I try and do, first and foremost... I'm obsessed with underdogs. The kids I was working with had been written off, and they had experienced horrific things that the vast majority of the population won't go through as long as they live. That is something that fundamentally really drives my writing...' Phil Earle, author of When the Sky Falls, While the Storm Rages, Demolition Dad and 16 other books for children, and 6 for older readers, in Bookbrunch.
  • This week we have the first in a new series, Ask the Editor 1: What genre is my book? 'I am asked this question surprisingly often. I say surprising because one might assume, most of the time, that the genre of a book is obvious. And, most of the time, it is relatively obvious; authors tend to aim their efforts at specific markets. But once in a while, you come across a book that defies simple classification. In this article, I will look briefly at the main genre categories in fiction, and then zoom in on the problem of books that cross genre boundaries or don't neatly fit the criteria of the publishing industry...'
  • If you're looking for a report on your manuscript, how do you work out which one of our three reports would suit you best? Which Report? includes our latest top-of-the range service, the Editor's Report Plus, introduced by popular demand to provide even more detail. This very substantial report takes the form of a chapter-by-chapter breakdown and many writers have found that this detail helps them to get their book right.
  • Links from the tech world: a huge and growing headache for human authors, Amazon Is Being Flooded With Books Entirely Written by AI; will computers supplant audiobook readers? Unlikely, says Nicholas Jones, The art of the pause; after aggressively promoting its new lifestyle social media platform Lemon8 in the US, TikTok's parent ByteDance eyes a new chapter in book publishing | TechCrunch; and this week BookTok creators considered how many self-published authors are on the platform, The Bookseller - Books - Books on BookTok: how prevalent are self-published authors?
  • The 2023 Times/Chicken House Children's Fiction Competition is open to unpublished, unagented children's writers based anywhere in the world. Entry fee £20. The prize is a publishing contract with Chicken House with an advance of £10,000, plus the offer of representation from literary agent Davinia Andrew-Lynch of Andlyn. This year also sees the introduction of the Lime Pictures New Storyteller Award, a bespoke prize sponsored by leading TV production company Lime Pictures, awarded to the submission which shows the greatest TV development potential. The winner will receive a £7,500 publishing contract plus an offer of representation. Lime Pictures will receive an exclusive first look at all shortlisted manuscripts
  • Authors often find it difficult to write their own synopsis for submission to agents and publishers, which is where our Synopsis-writing service can help. If you're preparing to self-publish and having difficulty with your blurb, our Blurb-writing service will make your book stand out.
  • 'I want to thank Chris and the team at Writers Services for their help and tolerance. My first submission of my rough draft came back with an extremely useful critique. I restructured, rewrote and resubmitted - and got excellent feedback which has helped me to revise the book by highlighting the weaknesses and the development needed... the help received so far is already paying dividends. I have just signed with an agent on the strength of the latest draft.' Patrick Cox in our Endorsements.
  • Links from writers: their union represents approximately 11,500 people who write the Hollywood shows and movies we watch in theaters and at home, WGA strike 2023: Hollywood's writers walked off the job. What happens now? - Vox; was it hard, writing your first real book? Stop Acting Like YA Writers Aren't Real Authors ‹ CrimeReads; so I thought I'd put the app to the test against my usual internet searches, Using ChatGPT for Book Research? Take Exceeding Care | Jane Friedman; and attempts to suppress works of literature tend to have the opposite effect, The big idea: what if censoring books only makes them more popular? | Books | The Guardian.
  • WritersServices offers a comprehensive range of editorial services for authors writing for the children's book market. All our services are carried out to the highest professional standard and offer competitive rates and excellent value for money. Writing for children is not an easy option. It requires sound writing skills, originality, a clear understanding of the target audience and a good grasp of the market. Our expert editors are specialists in writing for children, and they will help you make your work the best it can be. Children's Editorial Services.
  • How Literary Agents Work - an article written exclusively for Writersservices by literary agent Mark Gottlieb of Trident Media in New York: 'I have often heard that authors are interested in how literary agents work. It is very simple: a literary agent exists to provide services to authors...' A short but clear summary of what agents do.
  • Working with an agent: 'Don't ever take on an agent you don't like or don't trust, however desperate you may feel. You have to be able to work with them in what should be an extremely important relationship for you as a writer. You must also feel confident that they are competent, enthusiastic about your work and can be trusted, both in terms of the advice they offer and in relation to handling your money...'
  • Links from publishing: a round-up from the London book fair, taking in the essentials of what the publishing landscape will look like for the next 12 months, Meals and deals: five biggest trends from London book fair 2023 | London book fair | The Guardian; publishers are not hiring enough people - or quickly enough, The Bookseller - Comment - Publishing's hiring problem: the agent's view; haven't we always been stretched? The Bookseller - Comment - Publishing's hiring problem: the editor's view; book prices have not kept pace with inflation and earnings, RRPs are rising but books have never been cheaper; and a new study of trends in children's reading, The Bookseller - News - Children reading more but enjoyment and comprehension on the decline, research suggests.
  • Have you ever wondered why you don't win any of those competitions? What can you do to improve your chances? Our tipsheet on Entering Competitions.
  • Writing Biography & Autobiography is a serialisation from our Archives of the book by Brian D Osborne published by A & C BlackClick for A & C Black Publishers Publishers References listing. In the first excerpt, 'Managing the matters of truth and objectivity', the author says: 'Just as you need to remember that letters, reports, census forms, legal documents and so forth were not created simply for our convenience, so you also need to remember that what is written in them may not be true...'
  • Our 5th Tips for Writers focuses on How to promote your book (and yourself): 'These days social media offer a huge opportunity to publicise your book. Facebook and Twitter have been good places to publicise your work for some years, but it's increasingly important to think about BookTok, TikTok and Instragram as well. Even if social media don't come naturally to you, it's really worth giving them a go...'
  • Links to writers' stories: all told, he completed 34 books, 31 of them either Inspector Banks novels or related short story collections, Peter Robinson, Remembered ‹ CrimeReads; how her boookshop marketing manager has leveraged the platform to promote the bookstore - and what a microcelebrity Patchett herself has become on the app, Ann Patchett: Author, Bookstore Owner, and BookTok Influencer; it's not just hard to get published, but also hard staying published, Q&A: author Jo Thomas; and bringing her own long-running series to an end and reflecting on how other authors have done it, Elly Griffiths on Knowing When to Say Goodbye ‹ CrimeReads.
  • Our 22 Services for Writers is just a list of our writers' editorial services, which we think is the most comprehensive in the world.
  • If you need to clear copyright for your book, Clearing Copyright shows you how to do this: 'Copyright provides a framework for trading in intellectual property. In practice it protects the author's position and ensures that the publisher is able to take on the risk of publication in the knowledge that the publisher's rights are protected. In effect authors, (the originators of intellectual property) sub-license their rights through their book contracts to different parties in individual territories and in specific forms...'
  • 'If I had my life to live over again, I would have made a rule to read some poetry and listen to some music at least once every week.' Charles Darwin in our Writers' Quotes.
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