Nathan Bransford, Author


Friday, October 2, 2009

This Week in Publishing 10/2/09

This............ weekinpublishing

First up, for those who are in the San Francisco Bay Area and who also happen to write suspense or thrillers or related materials, I will be meeting with the SF Sisters in Crime tomorrow at noon out in the Sunset. Dana promises to follow with details in the comments section, so if you want details: Dana has them.

Also, if I don't turn up to blog on Monday, well, my obituary will probably read that I should have known better than to agree to meet with a group that calls themselves Sisters in Crime.

In friend-of-the-blog news, Stuart Neville aka Conduit is celebrating the release of the terrifically-reviewed THE GHOSTS OF BELFAST (congrats, Stuart!) with a very cool Twitter contest. If you fancy that you could write a scary story in 124 characters: you too could be a winner.

You may have heard about the Twitter books, but did you hear that a man's Facebook status was given a book deal? The Onion, as always, is there with the crucial details. (via Erin Clifford)

In e-book news, they announced.... wait... no! Don't skip the paragraph!! I have to report on this stuff!!! Darn it. The e-book news always scares them away. Anyway, for the two people still reading, I'll make this as fast as possible: Sony and Smashwords partnering up, Daily Beast and Perseus teaming up for rapid e-books, maybe publishers withholding e-books actually kinda makes sense after all (except for readers), Amazon settling lawsuit with angry kid whose Orwell notes were deleted, and Simon & Schuster is going wild for Vooks, aka video books with web stuff.

Oh. And remember all that news about how the Dan Brown e-book was outselling the print book and much more than the usual 5%? Yeah, not so much.

Kristin Nelson has a must must must must must (that's five musts) read guest post by Megan Crewe obliterating the widespread myth that you have to have connections in order to get a book deal. Now, obviously I am not exactly the poster child for puncturing this myth, but luckily Megan's there with actual stats.

Neil Vogler passed along a great post from the Independent that looks back on some classic bedtime stories that are actually pretty gruesome and terrifying.

In book piracy news, as a reminder of how book piracy has been with us forever, GalleyCat has an awesome post about how angry Charles Dickens was about rampant piracy of his books in the US. And the post has actual video footage!! Or old episodes of Bonanza. Either way.

If you're not reading anonymous agency assistant The Rejectionist, well, make ye haste, people. Make ye haste. R has a post that is both hilarious and helpful about the many book topics that are not in fact inherently interesting. In other words: yes, you can write a book about these topics. But you're going to have to work at it.

And finally, this week..... in rice harvest:



Photo by my dad.

Have a great weekend!






88 comments:

Maria Schneider said...

Nathan, Why do your readers hate ebook news? And what do you think about the vook? Is the future of the novel going to be one big choose your own adventure? Tell us Nathan!

Tina said...

Luckily the Sisters in Crime have invited the Romance Writers of America (San Francisco chapter) to the event, so you should be safe, knowing a few romance writers will be in attendance - we won't let anything happen to you.
I look forward to the meeting.

Bettina

Anonymous said...

Be sure to tell your Dad that is a way cool photo!

Dana Fredsti said...

Wow. I'm actually in the first page of comments this time. Amazing..

Anyway, yes, Nathan is going to be our guest speaker at the Sisters in Crime Nor Cal meeting tomorrow. It's $10 a person, lunch is provided (really yummy food) and we'll be selling raffle tickets for a chance to do an 'elevator pitch' with Nathan. We have limited space, but still have some room and non-SinC members are welcome! The meeting is from 12-2pm and will be held at my house out by Ocean Beach. Lots of parking and Muni accessible! So if you're a Bay Area writer and interested in attending, please email me at zhadi@aol.com for deets!

Dana Fredsti said...

I'll have you know, Nathan, that romance authors are acutally more dangerous than mystery writers. Mystery writers channel all of their 'wouldn't it be fun to kill someone?' energy into their work. Romance writers don't have that outlet. I write both, so hopefully Bettina won't smack me when she comes to the meeting. :-)

Nathan Bransford said...

Bettina, Dana-

Don't worry, I'm equally scared of both groups.

KIDDING.

Kind of.

Dana Fredsti said...

If you've read some of the flame wars in online forums in the romance world...well, let's just say you're right to be scared.

Bwahahahahahahahah!!!!

Other Lisa said...

I have this vision of the Romance writers on one side of the room and the Mystery writers on the other, doing the Sharks & Jets opening from WEST SIDE STORY....

Tina said...

Actually, Dana, our outlet are the sex scenes --- it's quite therapeutic!

Charlie said...

Nathan, did I read your tweet that you're harvesting author's named Rice?

My lucky day!

Dana Fredsti said...

Is it wrong that I have more fun writing the murder scenes than the sex scenes?... I mean, just a little bit... heh...

Lisa, the cats can be the back-up dancers...

Robert McGuire said...

Nathan,

I ALWAYS read the e-book news. What is that weird or something?

I was surprised to learn this week that Simon & Schuster, a book publisher last I heard, has someone on their payroll who claims "you can just have a linear narrative anymore." With friends like these . . . .

Tina Spear said...

Dana, when it comes down to the choreography of murder scenes, they are probably quite similar to sex scenes - either way, the reader is going to burn you on the stake if you're not doing it right.

Dana Fredsti said...

Tina, good point!

ryan field said...

"If you've read some of the flame wars in online forums in the romance world...well, let's just say you're right to be scared."

Dana, you made me laugh today :)

Kristi said...

I loved Megan Crewe's guest post - it gives hope to many of us.

Stuart - congratulations!

Nathan, I read all your e-book info the same way I go to the dentist. It's important but I don't love it. Awesome picture.

Happy Friday! :)

Kat Sheridan said...

Dana and OtherLisa, you both know me. A romance writer. With a body count of TEN before I get to the end of the novel (gotta love those grand old Gothics!). Maybe I could be like Maria, mediating between the Sharks and Jets. BTW, our local chapter, Sisters in Crime Columbus,(OH), is nicknamed Sicco (pronounced sicko). Love it! Have fun, take pictures!

Kat Harris said...

You would think Sisters in Crime would realize they'd be the first on a list of suspects if you were to turn up missing this weekend.

:-)

As always, thanks for the info, Nathan, and please tell your dad to be safe.

Michelle Moran said...

Beautiful photo!

Heidi the Hick said...

Please tell your dad what a gorgeous photo that is! The light, the composition, all good.

And if that's his combine, I just want to add: Got the right colour there. Run green.

Thanks for the diversion from confusing book-world news... harvest time doesn't really change much despite the technology used. (Good lord, there aren't rice pirates, are there???)

Anonymous said...

Landscapes don't get much lovelier in early autumn, reminding me of home. Gorgeous!!

Audrey Niffenegger's latest novel won't be released as an e-book. I find that a brave take, which she explains on her website.

Marilyn Peake said...

So many wonderful links. Thank you! I have butterflies in my stomach, as there are fantastic opportunities in some of them. And, if you really only have two readers who follow your eBook news, I’m one of them. :)

When Perseus Books Group announced its BOOK: THE SEQUEL project, a couple of your blog readers submitted lines. I was one of them. I had about five lines published, one of them getting picked up in serialization at THE DAILY BEAST. I love both the Perseus Books Group and THE DAILY BEAST, and am definitely going to look into their new BEAST BOOKS joint project. I thought I was incredibly burned out after completing my science fiction novel, GODS IN THE MACHINE; but, a few days later, I’m rested and coming up with ideas for future books.

I’m thrilled for Stewart Neville! I recognize his name from much earlier when he was first picked up for major publication, but I can’t put my finger on where I read about him or chatted with him. I’m thinking it might have been in a writers’ group. I found his story about his journey to get published both interesting and encouraging.

I love THE ONION’s satirical humor, and was recently thrilled to discover through Twitter that THE ONION now has print, audio and video productions. Here’s a couple of their funny videos: Report: Growing Ranks Of Nouveau Poor Facing Discrimination From Old Poor and BREAKING NEWS: BAT LOOSE IN CONGRESS.

Your dad’s photograph of the rice harvest is beautiful!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

ChristaCarol said...

That's a beautiful picture! I loved Meg's post on Kristin's blog, very cool to see. Thanks for all the linkage, enjoy the rice harvest!

Marsha Sigman said...

Can you file a missing person's report if someone doesn't show up on their blog???

We will see.

Marilyn Peake said...

I need more coffee. This is the second online site where I posted typos today. I should have typed "Stuart Neville" (not "Stewart Neville") in my earlier post!

Kristin Laughtin said...

The rice harvest photo makes me miss NorCal so much. Off to read some of these links!

Marilyn Peake said...

Anon @1:28 PM -

Audrey Niffenegger also talked in her recent Writer’s Digest interview about her decision not to have her books published in eBook format, and I completely respect her take on it, despite my love of eBooks.

JohnO said...

Sure, I follow the e-book news. Let me recap:

In e-book news, they announced some companies partnering up, and others teaming up, and some publishers are all up in arms, and some monopoly settled up, and this week (unlike all the other weeks) some company was talking up the newest/latest technology gizmo that is going to be The End of the Book as We Know It. (Unless it isn't.)

Word Verif: "aphysion," a temporary reality-deprivation brought upon by reading too much news about e-books.

Reesha said...

Pretty picture.

Thanks for making the e-news brief. It's something I feel I must know about constantly but dread spending time reading about because it all sounds the same.

Thanks for the links. Congrats. You got me to open like ten of them. Which I don't do very often.

Well, ok. Maybe I do. But usually just on your or Eric's blog.

the Lola Letters said...

I LOVED the photo. The clouds are amazing, and the word harvest just makes me smile these days.

I also loved the article by Megan Crewe.

Mira said...

That's a really nice picture. And that's so sweet that you're posting a picture by your dad. :)

Sadly, I will not be stalking you to the Crime meeting tomorrow. I can't believe how cool that is that you're meeting with them in someone's home. How wonderful is that? It's like you're a real person and everything.

I saved the e-book stuff for this weekend, which is another way of saying I won't read it. I like reading your headlines, but the details make my head swim. As for Dan Brown - people are way too fast to be saying this has anything to do with e-book success. Most people don't own Kindles. The fact that it out-sold in the first day alone should be making publishers shake in their boots, imho.

That's funny, and sort of comforting, about Charles Dickens.

You know what else is bloody when it comes to kids? Lullabies. Rock-a-bye baby is just horrible.

In terms of the Rejectionist, I'm going to say this carefully. I think she's a good kid. I'm sure she's absolutely thrilled to be featured in your Friday post. I think she's extremely witty, and you can tell from the comments that people have alot of fun on her blog.

That said, I have the same problem with her blog as I do the Intern's blog. These are young kids who know very little about the business and they should not be given a forum that makes it sound as if they do.

All of the topics she mentioned are extremely viable and interesting. It scares me to think some writer might read that and take it seriously. And not write about..let's say, the death of their parents...because they read on her blog that it's not interesting.

Industry insiders need to be careful. And I have to tell you, I supervise interns and assistants, and if any of them said they were going to blog and set themselves up to know anything whatsoever about the field, I'd laugh myself silly, and then fling myself in front of the computer, yelling "NO!!!!!!"

So, sorry, since we're obviously in disagreement about this Nathan, but those are my feelings about the issue. Again, I think she's a clever and funny writer. I just wish she'd stick to stories about her experiences and stay away from advice.

administrator said...

It looks like a wheat harvest to me. Just saying.

Nathan Bransford said...

mira-

I don't think the Rejectionist's point is that people shouldn't write about any of those topics at all.

I think there's a cultural assumption out there that dramatic life events lead directly to a good, publishable book. What do people always say when someone tells an unusual or dramatic story? "Wow, you should write a book about that."

And while I wouldn't discourage anyone from writing about their life, the publishability of all of those topics the Rejectionist mentioned depends on the quality of the writing, not on how dramatic the events are.

So the underlying point of that post is that people shouldn't assume that just a straightforward retelling of events, even dramatic real-life events, is going to result in a book that is publishable. The "telling" has to be amazing. The writing has to be incredible. People have to make it something more.

administrator-

I think my dad would be pretty surprised if he planted rice and it came out wheat.

KayKayBe said...

I checked out Vook.tv yesterday- It seems more disruptive to the reading experience than, say, overuse of exclamation points. The publishers want it to be a seamless experience and I wonder if that's possible. Whenever I flip to the section of pictures in a NF book, it ALWAYS feels like a seam. Not necessarily bad, but a seam.

Mira said...

Nathan,

Your point is an outstanding one. I didn't read that from her post, but your interpretation of it makes sense and I agree with it.

Even so, my point that people who are new to an industry should not set themselves up as experts - well, I still stand by it. Even if it means disagreeing with you, sorry.

Nathan Bransford said...

Well, if there's one thing assistants know it's queries. Assistants are drowning in them.

And I wouldn't sell assistants short when it comes to industry knowledge. They're living and breathing it day and night. They're working really really hard to prove themselves. You learn a whole lot.

Robin said...

Great links for my weekend perusal. Thanks Nathan.
I think that the Rejectionist is a riot.

Carpy said...

Sisters in Crime, RWA, WOW I want to move to the Bay area! Hey, I look forward to This..... weekinpublishing every Friday. I also love your photos. Your dad's picture looks a lot like he might be in Nebraska, but I haven't seen many rice fields around here. A good weekend to you all!

Mira said...

I believe that assistants are learning a whole lot. But that's early in the process. Integrating that information, putting it together to formulate a cohesive whole, knowing what's important and what's not important - these are all part of the learning process that take years in any field.

Honestly - if you had started a blog your first years in the field, should anyone really have listened to you? I would bet it would be hit and miss. Some things: yes. Some things: no!!! Other than posts about your experience, I mean.

I'd have less of a problem with this if there wasn't such instant power dynamic.

But I am very comfortable with agreeing to disagree, Nathan. I understand why you linked this, and I think she's lucky to have a support in you. I also think she's a writer, and industry professional, with great potential.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of The Rejectionist, I noticed there's a link from that blog to another intern's blog. The other intern has started a business: $50 to review query letters, $100 to review and comment on a manuscript, etc. Good idea for writers to get feedback that way?

Mira said...

Oh good god, you're right. That is so unethical.

Nathan, this is why I'm taking a stand in disagreement. It's scary, but these issues are just too important.

Anonymous said...

Mirs, I wasn't asking because I thought it was unethical. I wanted to know if it would be a good idea for writers to use the service.

Anonymous said...

I meant Mira, not Mirs. Typo. :)

Anonymous said...

Rice harvest looks a lot like wheat harvest in the Columbia Basin or the Palouse.

The hop harvest is winding down in our area. You haven't experienced anything until you've enjoyed the aroma of drying hops. The scent of fall in the Yakima Valley.

It's almost as good as mint harvest--like living in a Tic Tac container.
Charlie Mac

Nathan Bransford said...

mira-

Whoa there. There are plenty of editors in the publishing industry who moonlight as ghostwriters, manuscript consultants, book doctors, etc. The Intern works at a publisher, not at an agency, so there aren't any rules about charging to help with query advice. Particularly since this is someone who is working for free in New York City: people gotta eat!

anon-

I think it's helpful to get feedback from people who know what they're doing. Whether you get that from a critique group, a message board, or a paid service is up to you, but it can definitely be helpful. Make sure you really research someone's credentials if they're charging.

Beth said...

I appreciate anon's question (4:24pm), because it's something I've been considering. Thanks, Nathan, for your feedback on that as well. I always love your Friday TWIP blogs.

Ink said...

Mira,

The Intern also has a book of her own being published, so she obviously has some idea of what she's doing. And lots of people *cough cough* do freelance editorial work. Don't hate us! I mean them!

I think, for what it's worth, you're somewhat right about the experience thing... but I think that's up to the reader to judge when considering what people say. The bloggers are honest about being interns or assistants... so the onus is on the writers to take their advice for what it's worth. And just because someone's considered an expert doesn't mean they're right - they can still offer bad advice.

So, whether expert or intern, it's the writer's job to evaluate the information they're presented with and use it wisely. No easy path! There's no all-knowing Yoda. Perhaps if Nathan were smaller and more wrinkled and, you know, all around more green...

The Rejectionist said...

Mira, we are older than Nathan and have been working in publishing off and on for over a decade. We would self-identify as neither "good" nor "kid." FYI.

Thanks for the very nice mention, Obi-Wan! Er, Nathan!

D. G. Hudson said...

Very nice photo by your dad, Nathan. Be sure and let him know he's got a good eye. It reminds me a bit of the Canadian prairies.

Hope you make it through the weekend so we can read the blog on Monday. Just watch your back at the meeting and trust no one.

Anonymous said...

"Make sure you really research someone's credentials if they're charging."

I'm hoping that if someone is willing to hand over their hard earned money to "The Intern, "The Intern" is also willing to give out her real name and her detailed credentials in return before she takes money to read queries and manuscripts.

This entire anonymous intern-publishing blogging thing, in general, is getting tired. It's been done by the rejecter and Miss Snark, and they did it well. But it's time to start flipping back the long hair, adding a name to the blog, and doing things the right way if you want to charge new writers for your services.

I'm all for editors and writers moonlighting, as long as they take it seriously and offer their credentials publicly. And from what I can see, "The Intern" could be anyone trying to make a fast buck.

Skeptic said...

Wow. I just read through the comments. Kudos to the smiling happy SinC!

Is it just me, or has this week been a little heavy on interpersonal brutality online?

I am going to hole up with my KINDLE and enjoy whatever e-book I feel like downloading. :) I always read your e-book news. I am addicted.

Jill Edmondson said...

"Vooks"??? Now I have heard everything. I get the point of keeping up with technology and changing times, but "vooks"?? I am overwhelmed by it all. What happened to just writing a book, being lucky enough to get contract and seeing a copy of it on shelves in a store near you.

I am just starting to get my head around Kindle and so on, but baby steps firts!

Cheers, Jill
www.jilledmondson.blogspot.com

T. Anne said...

Oh gosh. Now all I want to do is help your dad with the rice harvest. Too lovely.

Mira said...

Skeptic - I really hope my remarks didn't sound brutal. I didn't intend them that way! Well, maybe the unethical one.

Well, in a week where I don't even have time to go see Nathan, I certainly don't have time to get into a blog battle, especially with Nathan and Ink, both people I really respect and appreciate.

So, um, okay. I'm wrong.

That said, Rejectionist, from my stance you are both a kid and good. However, as a Social Worker, I completely acknowledge your right to self-identify as elderly and bad to the bone.

Mira said...

And congrats on your book, btw.

Mira said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Two Flights Down said...

Rice fields are so pretty. I live in a rural area of Japan and I can't stop gazing at them...

Haste yee back ;-) said...

Ducks and Geese are pirates of rice...

Haste yee back ;-)

Anonymous said...

Great links. Great photo, too.

JaxPop said...

So - to the important stuff....
How the heck is Stanford 3 & 0?

Rie said...

I do so love harvest season.

Literary Cowgirl said...

Nathan, I am sooo gunning for you when I need someone to rep my adult stuff. An agent who posts pics of farm equipment! How amazing is that? Would it help me out if I mentioned that I bring along my laptop top in the truck to do revisions while my husband loads the trailer with hay and my three kids wage WWIII in the backseat? I'm dedicated. Honest.

Mira said...

LC - wow. You've got your hands full.

Good for you - I'm rooting for ya!
:)

Anonymous said...

I checked out The Rejectionist link, but the tone of the site was too shrill for my tastes.

--Hoogly

Coral Press said...

Interesting debate going on about The Rejectionist and The Intern - I also had my doubts about the latter, but of course it's always rather unproductive to complain about people who are obviously popular and aren't hurting anyone by being that way.

As for the vooks thing, it's an interesting idea, but I really think it just sounds like the kind of ingenuity already brought about by the internet. I don't think vooks can or will - or should, considering the literacy "crisis" of today - replace the traditional book medium. We'll have to see what happens.

Anonymous said...

"I also had my doubts about the latter, but of course it's always rather unproductive to complain about people who are obviously popular and aren't hurting anyone by being that way."

I guess this is a healthy way to look at it. After all, it all comes down to choice. I choose not to read blogs like The Rejectionist or The Intern. It's already been done too many times.

I just hope people aren't paying hard earned money to get advice from someone who won't give an official list of publishing credits or a real name. This is the part that bothers me, and I don't care how popular they are.

Marie said...

So you're posting anonymously that people should disclose their names in order to be taken seriously?

Dawn Maria said...

Shoot my whole WIP is about an amulet discovery! That was funny as hell. Needed the laugh too.

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:30 is not charging money.

Anonymous said...

"So you're posting anonymously that people should disclose their names in order to be taken seriously?"

First, I'm not charging anyone money, I'm not trying to get a following, and I'm not handing out advice. I'm commenting in a blog thread. I don't care about being taken seriously.

Second, I said, if you were paying attention to what I wrote, that anon blogs are fun and some people like them. I don't. But they are fine for other people. Some are even hysterical. I hate giving examples, but I think it's safe to say that "Miss Snark" was the ultimate of anon bloggers. She helped writers and entertained them. But I doubt Miss Snark would have charged anyone money for anything.

Third, if you don't think that people can create fictional personas through blogging, then you haven't been reading blogs very long. Anyone can create a publishing blog and use any name they want. In other words, you might think you're reading a blog by a publishing professional. But it could be anyone. It would be creepy at best if someone did this, but the internet can be a very creepy place.

Mira said...

Well, I pretty much agree with Anon.

I feel bad saying this, because I get what you're saying Nathan - people gotta eat - and the intern does seem like a good kid. (I'm sorry, I can't help it. You pass a certain age, and suddenly everyone becomes a 'good kid.' If it hasn't happened to you yet, it will. You'll see.) But people also need to make money in an upfront and ethical manner.

The Intern is charging 50 bucks for query review and 100 bucks for book proposal reviews. That's not chump change.

Who is the person, and can they justify charging that much money? Do they have results? Can they prove that they have actually helped people get published?

Writers are vulnerable. Yes, they can choose not to read, but again, when someone is linked through agent or editor blogs, they are given a certain industry stamp of approval.

I don't like pointing fingers, but...well, I am. And this is a bigger issue than particular people. It's about the larger industry, and standards of practice.

Nathan Bransford said...

mira-

First off, I think it's very condescending to call someone who has graduated from college and is of working age a "kid."

I also don't see how it's unethical for editors or former editors to have freelance side work.

If you don't feel that the person is charging a fee that is commensurate with their experience there's a simple solution: don't pay them to critique your work. If you're going to miss $50: don't pay anyone $50 to critique your work.

But just because you don't personally feel that it's worth it doesn't mean it's somehow unethical.

Mira said...

Nathan,

I'm calling someone a 'kid' based on their age, not their credentials. But I don't mean to offend - my apologies if I did. It's certainly not meant to be condescending.

I agree - it's not unethical for editors to offer freelance sidework.

And I didn't say it wasn't worth it. For all I know, the Intern does a 'bang-up' job doing critiques.

What I said is that the only credentials that she is offering is that she has a blog that is linked through other industry blogs. This gives her an unearned legitimacy.

I believe charging money for something based on that is unethical.

Nathan Bransford said...

mira-

I don't think you could really read her blog and think she's perpetrating some great online ruse and is somehow faking that she's actually a publishing intern. You don't just get a sense of the inner workings of editorial meetings through divination alone. And beyond that, I don't think the Intern is trying to claim any credentials other than that she's an Intern.

I really don't understand how all of this is cause for great concern.

Mira said...

Of great concern? Well, now you've made me wonder...is it?

I guess it's becoming more apparent to me lately how unregulated the publishing business is. This seems like an example of it. An anonymous intern can create a blog and start charging writers $100 a pop for evaluations, and she's given the green light by other industry blogs......

I guess it's not a great concern, it's more of one of those flashing red lights: something is wrong with this picture.

Again, without calling the Intern anything, I will acknowledge she seems like a good person. Smart, funny, witty. More power to her in terms of making money at her profession. Just.....there's a larger issue here.

Isn't there? Stop making me doubt myself, Mr. Bransford. :)

Nathan Bransford said...

I don't know what you mean by "green light by the industry." Are you saying I'm responsible for the activities of not only the people I link to, but who the people I link to link to?

But anyway, your concern seems to be that someone can start a website and start charging people to read their queries. But anyone could do this (except, of course, for agents who abide by the rules of the AAR). You could do this right now. It's a free country.

What would be unethical is if someone is lying about their credentials. But even you don't really seem to think that is the case here.

This is really much ado about nothing.

Mira said...

No, of course you aren't accountable for links that follow links.

But the intern is linked by Editorial Anon, a site that is well-respected.

Nathan, I'm surprised that you don't see the red light here, but the fact that you don't gives me pause. You do tend to be on target ethically. So, I'll think about this....other than that I hope we can agree to disagree, because I think I've reached my capacity for going up in opposition to you.

Anonymous said...

I might start offering my own service to writers on my blog. For only fifty dollars, I'll read their manuscripts and critique them. For queries and things like writing back cover copy, I'll charge twenty-five. I have more experience than an intern, and I work fast. The only catch is that I'm not going to tell you my real name or my official credentials. You're just going to have to trust me on this because I sound like I know what I'm talking about.

Now, didn't that just sound awfully shabby?

It's all about the name and the credentials. It's not about the service. I've seen many wonderful editorial services offered by industry professionals over the years. But I can't think of one that didn't stand behind a name.

Nathan Bransford said...

It's really amazing to me the stuff people can get worked up about.

anon - you're anon. Intern has a blog demonstrating that the Intern has publishing knowledge.

No one is forcing anyone to part with money. Intern has obvious qualifications and is not trying to pretend she's editorial director of a publishing house. If you don't want to pay for the service it's simple: don't pay for the service.

Lynn said...

Its.......realityshowcliptime

Anonymous said...

Interesting.

Mira said...

Nathan - Are you telling me that there is absolutely no merit to my argument? That I'm worked up about nothing?

No. I'll agree to disagree, but I won't agree to that.

There is a larger issue here. One that I will, however, re-consider.

But I really have to stop here. I am not posting anonymously.

Thank you for giving me the forum to speak my truth - especially since we so clearly disagree. As always, I appreciate and admire your openness.

Malia Sutton said...

I'm the anonymous poster that has been agreeing with Mira. I hate commenting about anything even slightly confrontational. But I agreed with Mira so stronly on this one I couldn't keep my big mouth shut. Sorry, Nathan :)

And I might sound overly paranoid in the comments, but I don't think I made any comments that were false or could be considered in bad taste.

So I'll also agree to disagree, politely and without another word.

Mira said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mira said...

Thanks Malia. I didn't have a problem with you posting anonymously, btw. But it's nice to know who you are, and I know that took some courage. Thanks.

Ink said...

I'd have to side with Nathan on this one.

Someone has a website or blog and on it they advertize certain services. To me this is simply basic business - it happens everywhere. People who see it can determine whether or not they wish to pay for such services based on the content of the blog or website. Yay for a free economy! I don't see how this is a problem.

If you don't want to pay an anonymous internet person for their services, then don't hire them. I wouldn't. If they're a fraud, they can be prosecuted for it. If not I don't really see a problem. If someone wants to spend their money that way I'm pretty sure that's up to them. It's not really our job to protect people from risky decisions, though we can advise against it.

Mira said...

Good points, Ink. :)

Mira said...

So, I know probably no one is reading this post anymore, but it's been haunting me.

I think I'm glad I spoke up here, partly just because it was important to Melia. And partly because I have this terrible on-going struggle around speaking my truth vs. picking my battles, and I'm not always sure the latter should win....

But I also tend to start fights on the internet when I'm really stressed, which is more difficult to justify.

I guess my struggle here is I keep worrying that I hurt people here. I do NOT want to hurt people.

But I want to stand up for principle too. So, I think what I've learned from this post is to wait to address topics when they are not so personal, and when there isn't direct finger-pointing.

I know everyone's intentions are good.....

So, for the record, if anyone other than Nathan reads this post, I apologize. Not for the principle of the thing, because I do agree with Melia, but for making it personal.

I'm sorry.

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