Saturday, April 4, 2015

some good news

Here at last is some good news. I should have posted earlier that Dorothy and I found an editor who gave us some work. This person edits the successful Grosset & Dunlap "Big Head" series. It got its nickname from the cover art. Each book is a biography, and the artist portrays them with "big heads" that make them easy to spot. The books are paperbacks, aimed at a younger-grade audience, and most importantly sell like crazy. Anyway, they're branching out from biographies into places and events, and we were assigned a very desirable subject: the Great Pyramids.
    We recalled years ago reading that the two most popular subjects for young readers were Ancient Egypt and Dinosaurs, and we told an editor (jokingly) that the obvious title would be "When Dinosaurs Roamed Ancient Egypt."
     Anyway, the editor liked what we did, and "Where Are the Great Pyramids?" is scheduled for publication this fall. We were assigned two more titles, and are hard at work on them.

Even better news is that I found somebody who liked my YA novel "Come Sit By Me." Since this book has a school shooting as its back story, publishers and editors and agents ran from it like vampires from garlic. The great fear is, I assume, that there will one day be a school shooting and the shooter's locker will be opened to find that he (they're always male) had been reading "Come Sit By Me."
The fact that this is a topic that is probably discussed in every high school, and most grade schools, in the country means nothing to the publishers.
Having given up finding a publisher or agent, I began to look into businesses that have what I call a new paradigm for the publishing business. I wasn't going to pay for having my book published--that's a very old paradigm called vanity publishing.
No, this company brings together authors, editors, designers, and "book managers" on projects. Everybody is given a share of the profits (providing there are profits). That gives everyone on the project an incentive to do well--a piece of the action, you might say. What's in it for the author? Well, first of all, my share of the profits is 30%--much better than any publisher ever gave me. And secondly, I am finally assured that the sales people involved will actually try to sell the book. I will keep you all posted on how it goes.

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