A writer has brought this to my attention: a recruitment notice on the job site Seek for writers of children’s books. While it certainly seems to be an exciting opportunity, this approach raises a few questions: how does a publisher responsibly handle the potentially high number of submissions resulting from such a wide call out? How does a writer investigate the suitablity and credibility of the publisher involved, when so little information is supplied? And note, the burden of proof here is on the aspiring author, who must provide a CV and a sample, while the publisher provides only an email address. I’m interested to know, would you respond to this type of call out for manuscripts?
Over at Publishers Weekly there’s an amazing example of how digital publishing is both challenging and complementing traditional publishing: Kemble Scott released an e-reader edition of his second The Sower through scridbd.com, and quickly gained interest from a range of publishers. Since it was available as print-on-demand, The Sower did not have to wait the standard year or more to work it’s way through the traditional publishing process, which kept its contemporary cultural references fresh. Scott clearly understands marketing very well, and has great relationships with independent booksellers in the Bay Area. Now published in a limited hardcover edition, The Sower has reached the San Francisco Chronicle bestseller list. Says Scott, "This book was completely done outside all of the traditional gatekeepers of publishing… [P]eople can read the book for its merits and its content and not for the way it was published.”
Lastly folks, TINA is nearly upon us! This Is Not Art: Independent, Emerging and Experimental Arts Festival includes the National Young Writers Festival, as well as the Crack Theatre Festival, Sound Summit, Electrofringe and Critical Animals. So if you like writing, poetry, spoken word, zines or comics, get involved! TINA runs from 1-5 October in Newcastle Australia, so go for the festivals, and check out the beaches while you’re there…