Monday, December 8, 2008

Gloom & Doom

Several of us have blogged before about all of the crappy economic news that we're hearing. "Everything's horrible." "Financial apocalypse." I actually heard that last one over the weekend. And many of the blogs written by writers and agents are taking a gloomier tone as well. Many publishing houses are laying off staff and one recently was reported to have put a "hold" on adult manuscript acquisitions. Of course a day later they announced an acquisition of a debut novel. Then the announcement that the "hold" announcement was erroneous, etc.

So, I just went through the Weekly Deal Lunch from PM. Just in fiction, here are the breakdown's of books sold last week (using PM's genre breakdowns, which I don't necessarily agree with):

3 Debut Authors (one was a 3-book deal)
2 Inspirational
2 Mystery/Crime
8 Thrillers
16 Women's/Romance
6 General/Other
2 Children's Fantasy
3 Middle Grade
9 Young Adult

53 books (and there may be more multi-book deals in there)

That doesn't take into account the Non-fiction, UK, Canadian, Film, or Foreign Rights sales. PM's count is 185 deals last week. And there are 3 already for today.

Remember that the publishing industry moves slowly. So that novel you just put "The End" to will take time to find a home with an agent. And you'll probably need to do additional rewrites based on agent feedback once you're signed (ask Fleur). Then the agent needs to sell it to a publisher. And they'll want rewrites. I believe the last figure I heard for time from selling a book to it being on the shelves is 2 years. Who knows? The economy may be booming by then.

And also remember that readers read no matter what the economy is doing. They may not buy as many hardcover new releases, but they still go to the library and used book stores. Mass market paperbacks look more interesting. And there are those, like me, who are more selective in the new books they buy, but still want to read that new release while there's buzz about it.

Don't let the negativity swirling about get you down. And if it does---write about it! That's what we do, after all. Write about what's happening to us.

In the words of Henry Gibson: Keep a-going!


Ali said...

Say it, sister.

mcfwrite429 said...

Let's face it - in tough economic times, a book is a terrific value: it lasts much longer than a movie, it's cheaper than a vacation, and you can even hide a few dollars between the pages for a rainy day.

Marcia Calhoun Forecki
Better Than Magic