Tag Archive 'publishing'

In Praise of Paper Books

I recently started rereading a book I bought many years ago – one volume of an eight volume collected set of The Spectator, a London daily periodical from the early 18th century. William Addison and Joseph Steele wrote most of the The Spectator’s 2500-word, witty and wise essays on serious topics of social value. A […]

Are You Publishable or Not? Reading the Tea Leaves.

Writing never feels more lonely than after you’ve sent your manuscript out to every agent and publisher you can think of and gotten nowhere. Of course, you can always take comfort in the long list of massively successful books that were initially rejected by nearly everyone who saw them. But for every brilliant book that […]

Hugh Howey: “When the People of Publishing Are Set Free”

Porter here, to introduce a special post written for us by Hugh Howey in our “Inside Publishing” series. In my Friday piece, Sir Hugh and the Snail, I wrote about how Howey’s career has surprised some observers because he embraces not only self-publishing but also traditional publishing contracts. Howey has just re-signed with Random House UK’s […]

The Book-Promotion Balloon: Where’s the Helium?

Regarding the graphic above, man, was I glad I was able to bear down on those lolling tuna boats Dickens and Hugo—they need to get up from their on-deck hammocks and at least think about hitting the book-peddling accelerator before I catch them. Though I do hope I didn’t peeve dear Charlotte; however, she being […]

Dealing with Setbacks

In these days of relentless self-promotion, we authors generally avoid sharing our bad news. Our posts and tweets, our websites and interviews emphasise the positive: a publishing deal, an interesting writers’ festival, a new creative partnership. Sometimes we talk about fighting our way through adversity to achieve a goal. But only rarely do we feature […]

I Know Nothing of Your Work

  An artist is one who does not live on the timeline that connects the events that take place around us. That’s Brian O’Leary. Know him? Rather, the artist sees the actors, events, and collisions all at once, from a vantage point that few others share. O’Leary is one of the most committed thinkers we have […]

‘Wins’ Without Losses: Agreeable Disagreement

Five Quite Recent Provocations Langdon gasped. If he’d deciphered the symbols correctly, Jesus had married Joan of Arc at Stonehenge! If not, it was a recipe for meatloaf. — Dan Vinci’s Nunferno (@Nunferno) May 24, 2013 Provocation One: Man Booker Irrational? When the American novelist Lydia Davis was given the £60,000 Man Booker International this […]

Book as Symbol: Perennial as Spring

Convenience comes at the cost of a grave loss: that of the book as a symbol, as an artifact of learning, poise, wisdom and moral fortitude. While this loss may seem trivial, a simple matter of changing times and customs, the symbols we are losing permeate society and have long been shaping the fortunes of […]

Writing an Outline

It’s the first thing an agent or publisher is going to see, after your query letter: the outline of your book. So, important. But also, confusing, to try to decide what might work. Some people assert it should be short. Others, long. Descriptive. Analytical. Comparing the work to other authors’. Steering well clear of that. […]

Maybe If We Tried Writing Well

  I don’t necessarily agree with everything I say. – Marshall McLuhan   I’ve been putting together some thoughts recently on our collective readership. Not us when we read. Not our delegation here of Unboxed Writers. And not even the wider community of writers, local and offshore, national and intergalactic, the diaspora-digital, and where it […]

‘Social’ Media: ‘Sharing’ our Narcissism

Even our photos of a church group, or a friend’s birthday, or exercise at the YMCA are, if we admit it, about us. Every photo is a “selfie.” Alex Miller Jr., The Myth of Narcissus Goes Social If you donated money to a hurricane relief charity via a website, you may have been asked if […]

‘Social’ Media: The Oddness of Meeting IRL

      The oddness of Twitter…meeting people for the first time who seem like old friends at #bib12 — Ania Wieckowski (@agwieckowski) October 25, 2012   Ania Wieckowski, Harvard Business Review’s Managing Editor, is nothing if not a poised tweeter. She sweetly tweeted this — or tweetly sweeted it — at this week’s continually […]