Friday, August 14, 2009

Served by a window with an ocean view

Heading out tomorrow to spend a few days at the Cape Cod Writers Center talking about children's book publishing. I'll be giving a keynote speech and moderating a mega-panel with Debbie Kovacs, Alison Morris, Nancy Werlin, Mary Lee Donovan and Martin Sandler. My main goal, though, is to meet Mitali Perkins, who is one of my best blog pals and lives not five miles from me but who has thus far eluded me in person.

Talking to writers--especially unpublished writers--is a dicey thing for a critic to do. Mostly, they are looking to get published, and I can't help them there. Or they want to know trends, and I can't help them there, either, because if I told them to get started right now writing a picture book about animal derrieres (the big trend revealed in proofing the forthcoming Guide), it would be too late, because we will have all Moved On by the time any such book could be published. Plus, it's not really in my best interest if everyone who wanted to be published were published. I guess that is my keynote speech in a nutshell!

6 comments:

Andy Laties said...

People are always asking me what trends I am seeing. They also ask me the complete opposite question: "What are the gaps in the market?" I think the second is a better question than the first.

Mitali Perkins said...

I hope the non-virtual me does not disappoint. See you tomorrow!

sdl said...

That is a pretty sweet career you have these days, my friend! Remember the fun days of summer reading in the public library?

Andy Laties said...

Incidentally, if someone does happen to ask you about gaps in the market, my stock response for 25 years has been: "Dinosaurs in The Congo." Title could be "Congo Dino"....remember that Bigfoot/Loch-Ness/Yeti-like tale of live dinosaurs being sighted recently roaming in the Congo?

I want 5% of the royalty though.

Lyle Blake said...

As to being too late to catch a trend: While holding down a full-time librarian job and a part-time acting job, I have been sporadically working, in what might laughably be called my spare time, on a YA novel about a teenage vampire, which I started in 2004. That would be one year before Ms. Meyer published the first TWILIGHT book. My book is maybe halfway finished. Ha.

Lyle Blake Smythers

S. Krishna said...

I am working on BBAW (Book Blogger Appreciation Week)and your blog, Read Roger, has been nominated for an award! More information will be forthcoming, but please e-mail me your e-mail address as soon as possible, within the next 24 hours at the latest. My e-mail address is skrishna [at] skrishnasbooks [dot] com. Thanks!