This Week in Publishing 2/19/10

by | Feb 19, 2010 | Uncategorized | 30 comments

Este Semana in El Publishing….

Hola compadres! So far so good at the San Miguel Writer’s Conference. I met with some talented writers today for some manuscript consultations, sat in on a talk by Chuck Adams, publishing veteran and editor extraordinaire at Algonquin, and looking forward to a keynote tonight by Barbara Kingsolver and a fiesta afterward. And, in case you’re wondering, Enchilada Consumption Count: 1. So far.

Meanwhile, there was news in publishing this week and I aim to give it to you.

The big news this week has been reported on by the incomparable Michael Cader, who sums up the latest developments in the Google Settlement hearing. The judge reviewing the settlement expressed some skepticism regarding the deal, and will ultimately decide if the settlement is permissible. (Also, that link is subscription only, but if you’re no subscribing, well… probably should.)

In e-book news, the NY Times recently reported on some developments surrounding the iPad. If you recall from the Kindle Missile Crisis post, under the “agency” model, some publishers are willingly receiving less money per copy on some new titles in order to have more control over pricing. According to the NY Times, however, Apple is still retaining the ability to discount some bestsellers, and per the anonymous sources in the article the much-discussed $12.99-$14.99 price point is just “a ceiling.” Which begs a question on many a publishing mind: if the goal of the agency model was to have more control over pricing, how does potential Apple-bestseller-discounting fit into the plan?

And meanwhile, Eric at Pimp My Novel spots some details about the Apple DRM, which is going to look a lot like the DRM they used to use for music. He wonders what you think about this.

This week in the Forums: the ongoing question What writer you’d have dinner with if you had a chance, What do you think made TWILIGHT so popular?, Should you share your work before it’s finished, and, of course, we’re still trying to figure out what in the heck is happening on Lost.

Ever sent a question to an agent or publisher and gotten a vague, unehlpful nonresponse in return? INTERN tells you why this be so.

James Cameron is writing a prequel to Avatar, and guess what: it’s a novel.

And finally, an updated Enchilada Consumption count: 1 1/2.

Have a great weekend!


  1. The Red Angel

    That Avatar prequel sounds pretty exciting. ๐Ÿ˜€

  2. Anissa

    There can never be too many enchiladas.

  3. Susan Kelley

    An Avatar original novel? There can never be enough books and especially fantasy and futuristic.

  4. kdrausin

    Did I read that right? An Avatar prequel novel published by the end of this year? I'm impressed!

  5. Ink

    What happened to the other half of the enchilada? Enchilada thieves?

  6. Other Lisa

    I want to know the margarita count!

    (I am so very jealous)

  7. abc

    If you run into Diego Luna, could you make out with him for me? thanks!

    Also, James Cameron needs to take a rest. And reflect.

  8. lotusgirl

    Bon appetit! Wait. Wrong language. Bueno appetito? Uh, or whatever they say there.

  9. atsiko

    Considering what I thought of the writing for the movie, Iโ€™m dreading the Avatar novel. Besides which, novels and scripts are very different. *shivers*

  10. Ryan

    I didn't even know James Cameron had ever written a novel before, so this novel could be a very novel experience…snicker

  11. Lee Thompson

    Great post. I especially liked the link to your forum post "Should you share a novel before it's done." It works great for me. I have one great editor who reads it as I go. I send him a chapter or two every week as I write it and it's kinda like a serialized novel. I can't wander away from my characters or plot. I think it helps keep it tight. Then when it's all done I can step back and look for any problems. And another friend I made on Zoetrope reads the MS start to finish and helps me tidy up and looks for any problems with plot or character or jacked up geography. It works for me. But yeah, it probably doesn't work for everyone.

    Neat blog. I'll check back frequently.



  12. Shelby

    …and the plot thickens.

  13. Claire Dawn

    1. Loved Intern's post

    2. Looking forward to Avatar prequel

    3. Wishing I was in Mexico!

  14. Mary

    Didn't see Avatar. It reminds me too much of The Smurfs. I know I'm the odd girl out on that.

    I'd have dinner with Cormac McCarthy or Stephen King. They both seem like interesting characters. Or perhaps Jon Krakauer – I'd love to hear about his adventures first hand.

    Twilight popularity – hard to pinpoint this. I doesn't have bad language, drug use, or illicit sex scenes. I think it's basic and teenagers could read it with the blessing of their parents. People from my Gen X generation liked it because it took them back to high school and tapped the raw intensity and desire they felt with their first love.

  15. ryan field

    Great links.

    As far as Twilight goes, I think people like the characters.

  16. Author Guy

    Lost? Never watched it. I'm much more concerned what's going to happen when Chuck finally gets back on the air after the Olympics.

  17. Mira

    Great links, Nathan – thanks for making the effort when you're out of the country!! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Hope you're having both a fun and productive time at the conference. Sounds incredible. ๐Ÿ™‚

    In terms of food, I would like to make a recommendation. You know what goes good with enchildas?

    Yummmm. Check them out. Chicken, beef or pork. Doesn't matter – yummy. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Also tacos. You know, just order anything. You really can't go wrong.

    Don't get…..Lost coming home (get it, lost coming home. Ha, ha.)

  18. Stina K.

    I wonder if the Avatar novel will be in 3D… would give a new meaning to "The words just jumped off the page!"

  19. Kimber An

    It's astonishing to me how many aspiring and already published authors


    readers, rather than simply accepting what is and trying to understand.

    To them, I say

    How in the name of all that is sacred can you expect to write something readers will love to buy?

    It's like the father who yells at his daughter, but just can't understand why she won't listen.

    And that's all I got to say about the Twilight Debate.

  20. Kimber An

    P.S. I've never read any of the Twilight books or watched any of the movies. Not interested.

  21. Laura

    1.5? Must have details, man! Chicken? Cheese? Beef? Spinach and Cream Cheese?

  22. Mary

    I wasn't trying debate if I liked Twilight because I did read it and wasn't impressed.

    However, no disrespect to the author, Mrs. Meyer. She tapped into something that made high school students and beyond devoured those books. More power to her because she has a huge following. It's great that kids were excited to read something for a change.

  23. Maya

    ONLY 1 1/2 enchiladas? Eat up ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. Kimber An

    As a book reviewer, I'm sometimes caught between readers and authors.

    Readers will rant about how terrible a book is.

    Authors will wail about how readers are dissing their books.

    I say, let the readers be.

    Authors, disregard the insults and namecalling and everything else. Focus on TWO things only.

    1) These readers BOUGHT your book.

    2) These readers are MAKING NOISE about your book.

    So, not only are you getting paid, you're also getting FREE publicity!

    In my observation, it doesn't matter if a reader loves or hates your book. The only thing that matters is


    Because the opposite of Love is not Hate.

    It is indifference.

  25. Anonymous

    Because the opposite of Love is not Hate.

    It is indifference.

    You're right, because this can also be used to describe the way writers feel about some reviewers ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. Beverly Patt

    Barbara Kingsolver? I'm totally jealous.

  27. Marie

    Would love to hear your thoughts on:

    Is it wise to entertain the idea of trying to publish a diary if the only things you have in common with Anais Nin are blue eyes and a french accent?

  28. Anonymous

    given that Barbara Kingsolver's novel "The Lacuna" is a PEN / Faulkner nominee, please share (or are there video links?) your experience of hearing her speak. Please!


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Hi, Iโ€™m Nathan.ย Iโ€™m the author ofย How to Write a Novelย and theย Jacob Wonderbarย series, which was published by Penguin. I used to be a literary agent at Curtis Brown Ltd. and Iโ€™m dedicated to helping authors chase their dreams.ย Let me help you with your book!

My blog has everything you need to know to write, edit, and publish a book. Canโ€™t find what you need or want personalized help?ย Reach out.


I’m available for consultations, edits, query critiques, brainstorming, and more.



Need help with your query? Want to talk books? Check out the Nathan Bransford Forums!