You may have heard me rail about how strange it is that authors are so bad about crediting their fellow writers.
Consider this sentence: “The Washington Post says the special counsel is investigating Trump for possible obstruction of justice.” That’s wrong. The Post doesn’t say that, its writers do. The Washington Post–newly returned to us as a crucial journalistic voice, under the ownership of Amazon’s Jeff Bezos–has never written a single story. Neither has The New York Times. Nor the LA Times. Nor The Sunday Times, the Associated Press, Reuters, CNN, or your local medium of choice.
People write stories. They’re our colleagues. That Post piece is by four of them:
There’s that sermon, then. Go forth and #CreditWriters, amen.
Next, consider the difficulty that many in the business have had in crediting illustrators, too, of all the preposterous things. Part of the issue here is metadata fields. It became apparent at one point that templates didn’t always have a place to fill in the name of an illustrator on a book, which is ridiculous. The last thing the industry expected was illustrators? Really?
That’s never been an excuse for publishers who don’t put the names of illustrators onto the covers of books with authors’ names. Especially in children’s work, these gaffes cripple illustrators’ careers, making it incredibly hard for them to attract editors and design directors looking for new illustration work.
Many publishers are trying to address this, and we can applaud them. Consciousness is rising, thanks to the campaign led from England by the Seattle-born author and illustrator (and energetic dresser) Sarah McIntyre. #PicturesMeanBusiness.
So there’s that sermon. #PicturesMeanBusiness, amen and amen.