Thursday, June 14, 2012

The New World of Publishing

by Rita Hestand

Change is inevitable…for everything, and everyone. Some things change for the better. I believe the publishing industry has finally evolved into

A much better industry as it now allows more writers to be seen and read. It also puts the profits to some extent in the author's pockets too, where

It should have been all along.

I recently was reading an article by James Altucher on Amazon about his idea of what is happening to the publishing world. And basically he has it all right.

The world of publishing, of yesteryear publishing is gone. As we know it. Or almost. It will be obsolete within a decade, as self publishing takes us where the world of electronics and print on demand is today.

What does this mean? It means like Hollywood has evolved with a new generation of "stars" so has publishing. Remember when the stars were treated to the red carpet and you watched them get out of limousines. Now they all walk down the red carpet parading their latest find and the gown and tux stores. Well, writers used to be made by publishers who pushed certain writers into the limelight and built their careers. But budget is slowing this down and new and innovative ways of publishing are creating new "bestselling authors".

Who is behind it? As I see it, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Apple are the biggest "bestseller makers". But even the smaller companies are getting on board.

Anyone, literally anyone can become a bestseller these days because we can now get our work out there in record breaking time and offer what the big Publishers of New York offered. Self publishing has evolved at last, and your future as a writer is in your own hands.

Used to, you had to go to the library and make a list of all the big publishers, then after getting your manuscript ready you mailed off your submission, after the wait to hear from them about your query. The process of publishing a book could take anywhere from six months to two or three years. All that has changed.

Create Space, a division of Amazon, Smashwords, and Apple are the biggies making it possible for "Joe Blow" to publish and sell.

What does this mean for the reader, more books coming out and available in many formats including print, and most of them cheaper than they ever were before.

Authors don't have to wait for months to hear back, they can have thier books on line in just a day or two. With all the new electronic gadgets available, they can read a book on their iphones if they want, or ipads, or Androids, or Kindle Fires.

The new publishing industry is making remarkable strides to make money for the author too.

Believe it or not, those "best selling" authors of yesteryear had to sell a lot of books to be on that list, a lot. And they had a short time to do so, too. And the so called B authors rarely made much money to speak of. But that is no longer true and the B author has as much chance at selling well as the others today. This is good news.

Now, they can sell forever the same book and it is available at the reader's fingertips thanks to technologies.

This doesn't mean that the author can be a slouch, but it does mean that almost anyone can write a book and get it published today. Whether it sells is due in part to the talent, technology and ease of buying.

Books are cheaper now, some free even. Readers love to delve into the free section. The new system of publishing is here, and it benefits everyone.

Everyone wins now and all is fair. So I'd like to say my "hat's off to the new world of publishing". I hope you readers out there will continue to support this as new talent is discovered every day. A new progress is in the happening. My thanks to men like Mark Coker, (CEO of Smashwords) for making this happen.

Ask No Tomorrows

By Rita Hestand

Chapter One

The bullet whizzed by Riley Morgan's right ear and she clamped her mouth to keep from screaming aloud, as her heartbeat quickened. Her last breath hung in the excessive heat as the smoke began to clear. She didn’t lower her arm until she was sure there would be no more shooting. Any movement would be noticeable, she was sure. Had she turned her head in the slightest she’d be dead now!

"She can't go far, she's on foot. Ride out and see if you can spot her."

"Want her alive or dead?" Jarvis McKnight asked holstering his gun, as he threw a dishtowel over his shoulder.

"Dead. As far as I'm concerned she's not pretty enough to bed, smart enough to use, so I put no value on her, and if she's dead, less trouble for us." Harry announced boldly.

"I ain't sweet on her or nothing' but she ain't a bad cook, she outdone herself with breakfast, and at least I didn't have to cook this mornin'. But…I guess I was wrong, 'cause I thought you was a little sweet on her when you first come."

"Sweet on her? Don't you think I got better taste than that? Why, I bet she ain't even been kissed, nor knows how."

"You're probably right about that. Who'd want her?" The cook an all around handyman of the ranch nodded and headed for the barn. She heard him picking out a horse and mounting in the creaking saddle. Then the stir of horse hoofs as he rode out of the barn toward the dusty road, sending straw and dust flying had Riley scrunching down into the weeds again.

My God Harry just asked me to marry him, and now he aims to kill me!

She peeked through the tall grasses and bushes. She didn't see anyone now. She peered about the place, only lonely scrubs stretching for the sky and cattails standing majestically against a glaring sun, like burn-out corn stalks. She stared at the monotonous winding road swept by the wind itself, uncluttered by human or animals.

Sweat dripped, stinging her eyes like a bee gone loco. She used her shirttail to wipe her eyes with.

A chill ran through Riley as she curled herself about the tall weeds and cumbersome bristles of a fir tree planted too close to the barn. She'd asked the hands to hoe down the weeds around it a month agao, but no one had attended to the task. Now she was grateful.

Her dark hair fell into her eyes, as she absently pushed it away from her face and took the ribbon she had wrapped around her wrist to tie it back with. She glanced down at herself and grimaced. No one would know she was one of the richest women this side of the Red River by the looks of her now. Dressed in pants and broadcloth shirt, she looked like a homeless waif, and her sweat rimmed working hat added to her tramp like appearance.

How could this be happening? She'd woke up in the best of moods this morning, everything had been fine, she’d gotten up early to feed the stock and make breakfast for the ranch hands. She'd outdone herself cooking a feast for the hands, pancakes, bacon, eggs and sausage, with no thank you's for the task well done. As usual for the first of the month, she then busied herself figuring her monthly budget and her deposit for the bank, now she was dodging bullets from her foreman of three years, a man she had once trusted. Thank God, she had slipped the money into her small purse to take to the bank this morning, a sizable sum since the selling of her cattle, otherwise she wouldn’t have a penny to her name. Somehow she had to get to town, get to the bank and escape her foreman without being killed in the process.

She bit her lip. Maybe escape should be foremost on her mind at the moment. The bank trip could wait for a better day. The insult that she hadn’t once suspected Harry bothered her greatly. Usually she was a good judge of character. However, the last hours made her wonder.


Tina Donahue said...

Glad to see publishing evolve with the times rather than becoming extinct. So few people seem to read these days. Hopefully, that will change with the new technology and accessibility of the printed word.

Ask No Tomorrows sounds like a great read, Rita. :)

Adele Dubois said...

It will be interesting to see how these changes play out.

It's true that anyone can publish a book these days, but it's also true that not everyone should.

Readers are savvy people and the sub-par books will not succeed. On the flip side, really good books that couldn't find a publisher are often doing really well. Publishing will continue to surprise us!


Anonymous said...

Adelle and Tina, you are so right when you say publishing will continue to surprise us. And this all had to happen because people are so on the go these days. I don't think they read less, maybe more because they can download and read a article or book during their break at lunch. They can carry their electronic gadgets everywhere and read on their phones and they are doing so too.

Best of all, the writer is seeing more of his own profits and this needed to happen. Because between the publisher's cut and distribution cuts the writer hadn't been making much per book. Now the writer has more control and it should be that way because the writer is the creator of the work, and therefore should be paid more for their efforts.

Yes, there will be many who shouldn't write and do, but that happens even with publishers. You know used to just having a name in any industry meant you could make a killing with a book. I've read many books that were written by stars and famous people that never should have hit the market, all because they had a name. I read one just the other day, about a star I adore but the book was jibberish and she'll probably make a million just because she has a name.

I can't imagine this playing out any way except to help the writer and benefit the reader. Readers have the option for free books too which is marvelous. This is a great way for a writer to break out and be "discovered". I have high hopes for this industry now, just because it has changed doesn't mean it's for the worse.

Ask No Tomorrows is a sweet historical western romance. It took even me by surprise. It will be out soon so watch my smashwords page.

As for bad writers, well, any writer can improve and do better. It's a learning process.

Also, changing is the formulas. One of the outstanding things about e-books is that ebooks have evoled into their own kinds of romance writing. Rules are broken and I think it's about time.

Ladies we are witnessing a revolution in publishing, and the long standing pioneers of the ebook are getting their turn.

Readers get out there and discover a new writer today.

I think there is room for all of us.

Love you guys

Fiona McGier said...

I agree that those who read today are reading more. Those who don't read wouldn't, no matter what formats were available. That is how it's always been. But the options for writers are exploding, and as you point out, you no longer have to wait forever to find out if you will get a contract...only to have your dreams smashed when the promotion budgets went only to the "big names", which meant you didn't sell through and no other contracts would be offered.

What I find really amusing is that romance writers and readers have led the charge into the 21st century and e-publishing, but romance writers STILL get no respect from most people! I'm so tired of the reaction that is similar to what I used to get when asked what I "do" and I would reply, "I'm a stay-at-home Mom who also works 2 p/t jobs". The minute I said those words, the listener would invariably start looking around for someone more interesting to talk to. Sigh. Romance writers are the red-headed step-children of the author world, but it shouldn't be that way! Look at the sheer volume of our books and our readers, look at our sales, and then tell me we don't count!

jean hart stewart said...

Lots ooof changes, for sure. I'm not certain that so many poor writers should have such easy access to publishing, but I'm sure it will all sort out....