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“It's a business”

That's what editors say when they reject aspiring authors' manuscripts. As in, "It's a business. If I don't think your book will make money, I won't buy it." Generally, with new authors, expectations aren't that high. You don't have to make buckets o' money, but you can't lose money, at least not more than once. Yesterday brought home a reminder that publishing is a business in the form of the announcement by Quartet Press that they were folding. The interesting thing is they folded without ever launching.

Also of interest is that their business plan included two significant differences from a traditional house: 1) no author advances, only higher royalties, and 2) no print books, only ebooks (they planned to add POD later). Even these innovative ideas weren't enough to overcome the high cost of starting a business— and possibly the difficulties of operating in the current economy.

Well, if they had signed any new authors who thought they were going to break into publishing with Quartet, my heart goes out to them. In this case, it's no longer a business.





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Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
david_bridger
Sep. 11th, 2009 08:49 am (UTC)
My hopes were high, although I hadn't yet talked about them in public. Oh, well. Onwards. (And I know what you mean, Karen, but it still is a business.)

Hey, today's Litopia Daily podcast might be of interest to you. It's a conversation between American lawyer and author Donna Ballman, and London literary agent, podcaster, and early adopter, Peter Cox. They're all over the Kindle and Amazon in the second and third items on today's show.
karen_w_newton
Sep. 11th, 2009 12:58 pm (UTC)
That's too bad, Dave! I will try to check out the Litopia thing this weekend. Thanks for the tip.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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