Friday, July 18, 2008

Early Review of Time of My Life

A little fun for Friday. So a while back, I got a note from a blogger, Bree Carte, asking if she could get an ARC of Time of My Life to review for her blog. And voila, here is her review! Check out her blog and add it to your blogroll if you're a fan of books and reading, which, er, isn't everyone here?

Thanks, Bree!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Trolling in Forums

Question of the day: If you go to online forums to get sources or quotes, do you then contact the person and interview them by email? Or can you use a quote that they said in answering your question straight on the forum? And then just contact them to get their real name and permission? How do you handle asking questions on an online forum?

To answer your first question: yes, if I saw someone in a forum who might be of interest, I would contact him/her off-board and then set up an interview. I would never, ever, ever just take a quote and assume that the person would be okay for me to use it in a more public forum, like an article. I'm not even sure, to be honest, if this is legal, especially if it's a membership board. (Well, it's probably legal, but I don't think it's particularly ethical.) People post things on forums that are often thought of to be "for forum eyes only," and violating this is unacceptable, in my opinion.

The best way to garner sources from a forum, in my opinion, is to a) first check with the forum moderator and ensure that you can post something looking for sources and b) post a separate thread stating what you need and what you're looking for. Then, people don't feel as if you're capitalizing on something they might not want to discuss further with you (if you contact them unsolicited about something they've previously posted). Forums can be tricky, and they're not my first choice to find sources, to be honest. Some moderator and subscribers don't want to feel like journalistic prey, and there certainly is that line you toe between respecting people's privacy and getting your article written. So, all in all, post your own thread and let them come to you.

Just my two cents. How do others out there handle forum trolling?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Crazy for Kindle?

Question of the day: I've been looking at the Amazon Kindle thing, it seems quite a popular device. I can understand all the advantages of a book being available like this. My question - is there ANY downside at all (to the publisher, the author, or both?) to offering a book in this format?

You know, truth be told, I haven't drunk the Kindle Kool-aid, so I'm really not the best person to ask about this. I spend enough time - too much time - in front of a screen, the last thing I want to do is start reading my books on a screen too. BUT. Those who love Kindle LOVE Kindle, and I know that some of my blog readers are among them, so I wanted to open up this question to everyone. To answer your specific query, I don't see much of a downside to offering books in the Kindle format: it's simple one more means in which people might read, and in a time when so few people ARE reading, I'm all in support of getting books out there by any means necessary. It's also a hell of a lot cheaper for the publisher, I'd think: no printing, binding, etc - simply an electronic document that costs the same to the reader as a hard copy.

But that's really all I know and can say about Kindle. Readers - do you love Kindle? If so, why? If you're resisting it like I am, why? And what are the pros/cons for publishers?

Monday, July 14, 2008

Pretty Please, Give Me An Answer!

Question of the day: Here is a question I've been wanting to ask you... My agent recently sent my book proposal to publishers - that was about 3 weeks ago. I am going crazy waiting. Is this a normal time delay or should I ask her to check up on it and send to more publishers?

Oh geez, and here I kept you waiting for an answer for a week or so too. Apologies!

I hear you. I feel you. This wait is excruciating. It is enough to make a sane man (or woman) lose his marbles. But...three weeks isn't so long, I hate to say. I'd say that the average wait time (anecdotally, of course, I don't have concrete facts on this) is anywhere from six weeks to three months.

But that time frame is contingent on a lot of things, and certainly, you can hear back faster. I've heard back faster on all of my books (including the one that I wrote between The Department and Time of My Life, that we got offers on but decided to ditch and head back to the drawing board). It really depends on how much leverage your agent has with editors, how badly editors want to read the book (i.e., will they put it atop their TBR pile even if they have others that came in first), and of course, if you get a bite from someone else. In all of cases, this is what happened: my agent had good enough relationships with the editors to nudge the book forward and once we had interested from one publisher, she alerted everyone else who started reading asap.

So...the long answer to your question is that it really all depends, but NOT hearing by now doesn't mean anything! Don't fret. I know PLENTY of writers who sold after three or so months, and yes, I do know writers who sold after four days. It doesn't matter WHEN you sell, as long as you sell period. So, if you can (which you probably can't - I know from experience), try to find something else to occupy yourself with and trust that when there's news, you'll know. (Btw, if you do have the type of relationship with your agent in which you can check in, then do. If it helps assuage your anxiety, I say go for it.)

Readers who have sold books, how long did it take you to hear? What took so long or sped things along?