Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Besides writing, how do you support the publishing industry?



Hi, everyone. Jill here. I hope you're enjoying the summer panels. This week Shannon Dittemore and I are at the SoCal Christian Writers Conference in La Mirada, California watching (and possibly participating in) some live writing panels. I'm teaching spec fiction and Shannon is teaching the teen track. I do love all kinds of writer's conferences. So. Much.

In case you missed it, this summer we're doing Q & A panels. Each day during the months of June, July, and August, we'll post one question. Each of us will answer it, and we want you to answer too!





Besides writing, how do you support the publishing industry?


Jill Williamson
I buy new books. That's one of the best things a person can do to support the publishing industry. I buy used books as well. (I'll buy books anywhere!) But as an author, I know how important it is to buy books new. If I love an author, I make sure to show it by purchasing his or her books.

Once upon a time I reviewed books as well. I reviewed hundreds of books back when I was Novel Teen Book Reviews. Reviews are the third best way you can support your favorite authors next to buying their books new and telling your friends about those books. I don't do as many reviews these days because I haven't been able to read as much and because it can be tricky to review books when you're an author and you start meeting these people at conferences or conventions. (Awkward.) Because of such moments, a few years back I adopted the mantra "If you can't say anything nice in your review, don't write a review." I know how it feels to get negative, hurtful book reviews, and I don't want to do that to another author.

Some other ways I support the industry is to shop for books at places other than Amazon.com. I well understand how convenient it is to buy everything from Amazon, but a healthy market is important to this industry. So I have a Barnes and Noble membership, and I buy as many new books from them as I can, online or at a store. I also try to buy books from indie bookstores whenever possible.

Also, checking out books at my local library helps the publishing industry. If the library doesn't have the book, I request an inner-library loan or outright ask the library to order it. Three times now I've requested an inner-library loan and the library responded to say they decided to order a copy of the book. It's so helpful for authors when libraries order their books! And I'm always super excited when my library orders something I requested.



Shannon Dittemore
I make a concerted effort here. One of the things I do is work to be encouraging even when I’m having a hard day. When I’m dealing with rejection or a particularly hard edit, I remind myself that it’s a good day for someone. A day where I get to congratulate them and take part in their joy. This takes practice, you guys. The tendency is to be jealous or bitter that it’s not YOUR DAY. But work to choose joy. It might feel awkward the first time. Might even feel forced, but that just means you’re choosing to act despite discomfort and, honestly, that’s brave. It will change your life. It will change your writing. It will change how you cope with the hard stuff. And everyone deals with hard stuff. Everyone.




Stephanie Morrill
What Shannon said about the feelings when it’s not YOUR DAY rings really true to me. Like when a friend gets a better review in a trade magazine than I do, or is swimming in contract offers when I feel like I’m fighting for each one. Supporting other writers through words of encouragement, even when I’m feeling only 75% happy for them and 25% jealous. Also, publishing is a business, and we vote with our dollars. I use mine to show publishers what books I want there to be more of. And I ask for books for presents for my birthday and Christmas. I’m also raising three little readers!


What about you guys? Tell us how you support the publishing industry.

13 comments:

  1. I don't typically buy books when they're new. I have sometimes, but budgeting is important, too.

    I think I'm going to start supporting more indie authors because to me, the actual publishing industry seems a little rigged. I know that you can still get traditionally published, but they make it hard and when you can self-publish now, it brings more opportunities.

    However, supporting authors you like is very important. Now that I know the process they go through, I would love to support a lot of authors. But, as Dave Ramsey says, you gotta look out for deals.
    God bless y'all.

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    Replies
    1. There's only so much money in the bank. :)

      Really, I think the best support is being thankful. We can take so much for granted without realizing how much work is involved in publishing what we sometimes read in one sitting.

      -Ann

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    2. You're absolutely right. I didn't think of it that way. I've read so many books so quickly just because I'm a fast reader. Being a writer now, I should stop and pause to think about all the work they put in to make it to my reading corner.

      God bless you, Ann.
      <3

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    3. Your comment about the publishing industry being rigged is interesting to me. It can definitely feel like the odds are stacked against us - and unless we have a celebrity name to trade on, they are - but I don't think it's rigged.

      Publishing is a business, so yes, they don't offer contracts unless they think you can bring in money for them. It's certainly easier to self-publish, but I don't think self-publishing necessarily brings about more opportunities. Trad and self publishing have different strengths and are right (or wrong) for different types of writers.

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    4. Absolutely correct. Each individual will have different needs as a writer. Maybe rigged was the wrong term for me to use. Hopefully I didn't offend.

      What I meant by my comment is the industry seems to make it hard for anyone. Obviously, this is the cast because anything worth doing will be a challenge. What kind of makes me mad is when people with a famous name get published easily. Especially when they haven't been writing a long time like you or I have. They get published because of their name, not because of passion.

      Publishing is a business and it should be treated as such. It is important and I don't think the people are bad. My point was is when they're rejected a lot, more might turn to self-publishing and traditional publishing might loose steam.

      Hopefully I didn't offend, as that wasn't my intention. I was looking at it kind of negatively. I understand the purpose for it being difficult.

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  2. I like to ask for preorders for Christmas and my birthday. As part of a launch team for one author, I receive her books for free in exchange for reviews. But I buy another copy of the book as well.

    The more I realize how much work goes into writing, the more I appreciate those who make books possible. And I try to show a bit of encouragement to my favorite authors by shooting them an email of thanks for all they do.

    I didn't realize that asking for a book at the library helps. But it makes sense, now that I think about it. I haven't been to the library for so long! :(

    -Ann

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    Replies
    1. I feel you. It feels like I haven't been to the library in forever. :(
      You're part of a launch team? That's cool!
      <3

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    2. That's nice of you to buy another copy even though you're in a launch team. I rarely do that, unless I'm giving it as a gift. But I do always share on social media, write a review, etc.

      And, yes! Like Jill mentioned, it's very helpful when libraries carry books and see them being checked out. That's another thing I do when I'm on a launch team, or when I'm wanting to be supportive but don't have a big budget.

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  3. I avoid the devouring dragon of Amazon and glad to know someone else is too. I recently switched my ever-growing wish list to Barnes and to Thriftbooks.com. I have one at Christianbook.com too. God bless!

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    Replies
    1. Does Amazon not pay the authors as much?
      Thriftbooks? I'll have to check that out. It sounds like you get great deals. I'm all about great deals, lol.
      <3

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  4. I don't read pirated books. It isn't fair to the author's hard work or time. I do buy both used and new books, and I try to use word of mouth to spread the word when it comes to books I've enjoyed. I know word of mouth can be a powerful force in the world of publishing!

    I also request books at my local and school libraries.

    I guess it isn't really supporting the publishing industry at large, but I try to support indie bookstores as much as possible.

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  5. I haz little moneyz. :(
    I seldom buy books at my local used bookstore, but that ain't retail.
    But I am planning on writing reviews on my blog... so that's something... if I do it. :)

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    Replies
    1. What's your blog?
      I can relate to the money struggles. I have to save up.
      :)

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