I'm back home from Dallas, where I attended the annual American Christian Fiction Writers conference. It delighted me to meet several girls who I knew through Go Teen Writers and to hear how well their meetings with editors and agents went.
|Jill Williamson, Roseanna White, and me heading into the awards dinner|
|Gillian Adams (how darling is she???) and me at the awards dinner|
|Roseanna White, Amanda Barritt (teen writer extraordinaire!), and me in the book store|
Ramona Cramer Tucker, cofounder and editorial director, OakTara
Looking for: fantasy, sci-fi, realistic fiction; medieval fantasy series aimed at boys; issues fiction; teen writers. “One reason we launched OakTara in 2007 is because there was very little Christian YA fiction being published; sci-fi and fantasy especially were missing. Our passion is to go where the readers go and offer fiction that will tantalize their interest. We aim at the mainstream reader but from a Christian worldview.”
Details: Especially looking for teens who are really good writers, and for fiction that will attract male readers. “We’re looking for fresh, unique novels with the broadest audience, and we are passionate about meeting the needs of the writer as well as the reader.”
And at the conference I sat in on a "spotlight session" for Zondervan where the editors talked about what they're looking for, what they're excited about, new things at the company, etc. One of the things they talked about is Zondervan First, a digital imprint "dedicated to publishing new e-books each month, rapidly delivering the best in Christian content to today's e-savvy readers."
How it works is you submit your manuscript - your entire manuscript - on their website. They stressed that they're looking for very clean manuscripts that don't require much editing. Their editorial staff will still be copyediting and all that, but they don't want to have to invest a lot of time in tightening the story. Right now they're looking for adult fiction (though they eventually want to do a YA line as well) in the following genres: Contemporary, Historical, Suspense, Romance. And any combination of those, I would assume. (Like "Historical Romance")
Honestly, I think it looks like a really good opportunity to break in. There's no advance, but you do get 50% royalties on all sales. You get the Zondervan name and the prestige that's tied to it. You have an editor and cover designer and all that. They say they'll market them, though it looks to me from the literature I'm reading on it, that they're really going to marketing the digital imprint as a whole rather than specific books. It looks like they'll feature totals on the homepage and stuff, but that the bulk of the marketing responsibilities would fall to you. Which these days is true regardless of how you choose to publish.
Anyway, you can find tons more details on the Zondervan First website. Their launching the line with Dina Sleiman who's a friend of Go Teen Writers, and I'm sure will be happy to share her experiences with us.
I tried to squeeze these pictures into the post, but it just wasn't working well, so I'll just post them at the bottom.
|Me, fellow YA writer Betsy St. Amant, and my new bud, Lori Chally|
|Jill and me in a Friday night class ... trying to stay awake.|
|Erica Vetsch and me, heading into breakfast|