Jolly old Saint James Patterson has returned this holiday season to grant 300 booksellers and owners with a well-deserved holiday bonus. For the last three years, Patterson has donated money to indie booksellers, in hopes of getting more books into more hands. Information to send in forms for bookstore and sellers can be left on the website. As the forms come in, Patterson, himself, reviews the possible candidates on a one-on-one basis. To be considered, the bookstore must have a children’s section and the business must already be in business and be successful.
In 2014, Patterson teamed up with the American Booksellers Association and gathered over $1 million to the first round of recipients. In 2015, he gave $250,000 in bonuses to 89 employees – which was the same dollar amount he gave in 2016 to 149 employees. This year, Publisher’s Weekly confirmed Patterson increased the amount by $100k to $350,000 – giving away bonuses to 300 bookstore employees, especially those who have been affected by hurricanes and wildfires in the past year.
Patterson has even been quoted saying, “These bonuses are my humble acknowledgement of [booksellers’] commitment to putting books into the hands of readers, and I hope these grants make that possible.”
During this holiday season, we want to thank James Patterson for helping those who genuinely enjoy their careers to continue doing what they do, as well as help young people get their hands on the books they deserve.
It’s December 1st, meaning there’s only a month left of 2017. Looking forward to the new year, I have been browsing the prediction of publishing trends for 2018. If you’re stuck on what moves to make next in your publishing career, keep reading this post to see what publishing professionals are expecting to see for 2018!
- Digital Fatigue
With the rise of the use of technology, many dedicated readers are taking a step away from their Nooks, their Amazon Fires, or their Kindle apps on their phone to dive back into the good ol’ days of traditional publishing, specifically paperbacks. Since 2016, e-book sales have dropped 35.9% and Nook earnings have dropped 26%. If you’re a reader taking a break from your cell phone or tablet screen and picking up a good book, I applaud you! If you’re a writer and wondering what to do with your fresh manuscript, looking into traditional publishing might be your New Year’s resolution.
- The Rise of Indie & Hybrid Publishing Indie publishing has taken over the publishing scene, but so is hybrid publishing right there next to it! From what it looks like, hybrid publishing may be bumping indie style out of the way to take the crown. Authors want to work with professionals who are familiar with the craft of publishing and hybrid publishing provides the professionals from the bigger companies to help the indie publishers make their mark in the world. Just keep in mind the market shares for self-published books is 42%, which is greater than the shares for big publishers at 34%.
- Longer E-Book Shelf Life = Increased Competition E-books enter a digital cloud and it’s pretty hard to delete them from the internet once exposed. With there being millions of books on the Amazon Kindle app, as well as on other platforms, it’s very easy to get lost in the mix. As a published author, if you’re seeing your sales decline/stagnant, revisit your titles and see what you can do. Maybe a new cover? Book description? Or even utilize some marketing resources to revitalize the title of your book. Or if you don’t see any improvement from there, publish more books! The more books you have available to readers, the better chance you have to get readers to buy.
- More Books, Stagnating Readership
Although 73% of Americans read at least a book a year, there are so many books! “Discoverability” should become your best friend as a writer to help gain more exposure with your titles.
- Audiobooks are GROWING I saved the best for last! In 2013, 20,000 audiobooks were released. In 2014, 36,000 audiobooks were released. In 2015, valued at $2.8 billion, 43,000 audiobooks were released for the growing community of audiobook lovers! Kindle Unlimited is on the rise, as well, with access to 2,500 audiobooks for a great price!
For $14.95 a month, audiobook fans can indulge in a simple romance package Audible has recently launched. If romance is an extra pleasure of yours, Audible is allowing current members to add the service for just $6.95.
As for discoverability, the website goes into detail about the different ways to find your next Audible listen. You can search the original romance subgenre page, breaking it down into the subgenres everyone loves to read. If you have a favorite type of romance story, the Romance Package opens the door to searching for your ideal character type. There are also story themes (similar to romance tropes) you can browse through if you have an idea of what you enjoy reading. The best part about searching for your next read is searching for the right steaminess level to fit your romance needs.
There is a variety of authors available as well- from bestselling authors to Audible originals and Audible exclusives. Whether you tend to navigate to a few select authors and those similar to them or if you are looking for a completely new flare – there are so many options to choose from, with only more to come. On select titles, celebrity narrators take you on an unforgettable journey through the romance story of a lifetime.
The package membership offers unlimited listens, taking a step away from the one credit a month Audible offers on their other services. So, go ahead and listen to every book you can fit onto your phone – we dare you…
As an avid reader, receiving books as a gift for the holidays will always put a huge smile on my face. If you or someone you know feels the same way, I’ve got some news for you – Barnes & Noble has revealed some great holiday gifts and ideas.
Barnes & Noble recently advertised how they are going to make book shopping easier. There will be a new Nook hitting the displays this holiday season. This updated device will have an automatic brightness adjustment which will sense the area surrounding the reader to make the screen more comfortable to read. Small features like this will help Barnes & Noble stay in the race of a very dominated industry. This would be a great gift for someone who enjoys technology or for the avid reader who might want to have a hand in helping to save a few trees.
The company has developed two new apps to make discovering new books and gift-giving easier: BookGraph and SmartGift.
The first app is BookGraph. It is only available as a desktop app. It is described as an “interactive discovery tool,” essentially showing shoppers a list of books that might interest them. It is meant to increase discoverability for both readers and authors.
The second app is called SmartGift. This app is available on both desktop and mobile devices. Users can send a gift to someone, who can either accept the gift or exchange it for something else of the same price.
The Barnes & Noble gift guide has been updated as well. If you’re feeling extra charitable this season, they are renewing their holiday book drive program in partnership with the Instagram brand, “Hot Dudes Reading.”
Keep in touch on social media with Barnes & Noble with the hashtag, #AllIWant.
On this episode of “The Road to Publishing,” we’re going to talk about the important things to know when it comes down to handing your rights over to make your book into a movie, a TV show, or even a Broadway show.
For film and television deals, it’s important to know your agent. There are a lot of literary agents who are very experienced and connected in the Hollywood scene. Even if your agent doesn’t have a ton of these connections, as long as they have a working knowledge of the film industry and the contracts/agreements that go along with it, then you will be in good hands when a deal comes your way (fingers crossed!). If yours doesn’t seem to have many connections, or the appropriate knowledge, then seeking out a film agent might be your best bet. You can query film agents like you would literary agents, they typically want to know (and are looking for) the same things. You could also take a bold step and query right to a producer. This way will certainly get you a bigger buck for yourself, but unless you have your own connections, it’s also very likely that your query will never make it in front of their eyes.
No matter who your agent is, there are a few things you should keep in mind to make sure you are getting the best care possible. First, you should never sell your film or television rights to an inexperienced producer or script writer. Your book should land in the hands of someone who has made a film or television show before (or has been an actor/actress with the appropriate connections). The less experience the licensee has, the less likely your movie or television show will come to fruition.
Another point to consider is where the producer is coming from. Are they a producer coming from a studio in Hollywood? Or are they a small-time producer from a reputable indie production company? This is crucial to know because it can determine the fate of your work, as well as your involvement in the project. When a major studio is involved, although very exciting, your chances of being involved in the process often become minimal. It’s also just as likely that you will never see your book on the big screen. Hollywood has a lot of money to throw around in order to find their perfect next block-buster, so producers can go out and buy 300 ideas (including yours) and scrap it in a month or two because they narrowed it down to two or three projects they hope to move onto production. If the producer is coming from an independent place, scope out their other work and ask to be involved in the production process. That way you can get the product the way you envisioned and can also be involved in finding a studio for it.
It’s also important to consider what you are looking for negotiation wise. Negotiating your movie and television rights deals is just like any other. If you have already been involved in print, e-book, audio, or translation deals then you already have a pretty good feel for what’s ahead. You will come across all sorts of deals/offers out there. Some of those deals are going to have a lower price tag than normal, especially if you go with a less experienced producer or a smaller production company. You need to decide what your target revenue stream is and at what point it just doesn’t make sense to relinquish those rights, no matter how enticing the idea of a movie is. A stipend is also usually given to the author while production is underway. It’s important to make sure you are being compensated for your hard work the way you should be.
Second to last, utilize your confidence. Remember when you first queried literary agent about your novel and how much you believed in the book and in yourself? During the film/television submission process channel that same energy once again. Make sure not to come off as desperate. This will turn anyone away from even picking your query letter up again because if you don’t believe in yourself, why should they? An experienced producer or agent will be able to tell the difference right away, so be sure the look things over (perhaps with multiple people) before you reach out.
FINALLY: Be patient! These sorts of deals don’t happen overnight! Agents/producers need to be found, deals need to be negotiated, and you need a moment to breathe as well.