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Wednesday News: Its all about the benjamins

For these authors, high volume and hard core marketing can result in a profitable career in writing. No one knows right now for how long, but the market is there for the author entrepreneur. Sramana Mitra

Traditional stationary book stores are facing major changes, and competition with online retailers is fierce. Those who survive will be determined by the added value a local bookseller can offer, said Skipis. Culture | DW.DE

Women war workers were all demobbed by the spring of 1919, and they undoubtedly found life had changed for themselves and for British society after four years of chaos, carnage, and courage. Though their contributions to the war were often marginalized in the interwar period, the inroads the ambulance drivers–and munitionettes, nurses, surgeons, farmers, WRNS, etc–made during WWI laid the foundation for an even greater contribution for women during WWII. Edwardian Promenade

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

15 Comments

  1. Stephanie Doyle
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 08:47:17

    “We definitely could use more stories set in this time period.”

    That’s awesome. I’m writing a story a story about a woman ambulance driver during WWI…. :)

  2. Sandy James
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 09:20:21

    I envy authors who can write to a trend. Unfortunately, my muse simply doesn’t work that way. Sometimes that’s frustrating because I have a hard time “branding” myself as an author. I write all kinds of romance genres–contemporary, urban fantasy, historical–which I’m sure frustrates the heck out of my agents. ;)
    I wish I had the ability to make my brain head a certain direction to write what’s popular. Alas, I can only write whatever story decides to pop up in my brain at any given time.

  3. Stephanie Doyle
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 10:41:31

    Trust me Sandy… WWI is definitely NOT writing to a trend :) I’ve been working on this idea for over a year – and my only hope is that possibly maybe given the small shift we’re seeing in historicals is that editors might be willing to now take a chance on this period where they haven’t been before.

    Because you’re right. Sometimes the muse is just in control and you can’t do anything about her!

  4. Moriah Jovan
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 10:54:03

    Sometimes the muse is just in control and you can’t do anything about her!

    I reference the muse sometimes, though rarely. I call it “percolating.” It takes me years to write a book.

    But I look at those authors who write like machine guns, and I know I could write like that too if I wanted to. The key is that I don’t want to.

    I think most of us who can turn out a decent novel can actually do this. The “muse” is shorthand for saying, “But I don’t want to.” And so it’s a choice. It’s not better or worse; it’s differing goals.

  5. Lynn S.
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 11:21:31

    Quote on point, courtesy of Andrew Wylie:

    “Unless you’re a terribly bad writer, you are never going to have too many readers.”

  6. Sandy James
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 11:33:29

    @Stephanie Doyle: I wasn’t referring to you, Stephanie. I meant the authors mentioned in the post. I’m a history teacher, and I know how hard it is to research the WWI era. I’m looking forward to reading your book when you publish!! :D

  7. Katie
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 12:00:16

    I don’t know the other two, but at least I know now why I don’t like the work of Bella Andre of whom I have read two totally boring books. I am sure a lot of authors try to write to a trend and I enjoy my fair share of those titles, but I doubt I can grow a deep love for her, because the stories are simply too generic.

  8. Carolyne
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 14:55:30

    My desperate hope is that what I have a passion for writing becomes a trend, just through my (desperate) stick-to-it-iveness. Whenever I try to write to certain kinds of trends, the story veers off into something more to my liking. Call it the muse or call it don’t-wanna, but my brain doesn’t seem to be wired to go any other way.

    I’m all for encouraging more WWI-era books–I’ve been trying to get others to write them for me to read for much of my life :) I was hoping that with Downton Abbey–and various centennials–this would become more of a trend, but it’s been slow to build. In trad pub there still seems to be a resistance to books set in the era. Don’t know why. I can speculate, but I’d only be guessing.

  9. Moriah Jovan
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 16:06:55

    @Carolyne:

    Call it the muse or call it don’t-wanna, but my brain doesn’t seem to be wired to go any other way.

    You aren’t going to get any grief from me, that’s for sure. I reside out there in the hinterlands with you. We can hold hands and sing kumbaya.

  10. Stephanie Doyle
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 16:24:36

    @Sandy James:

    Of course you were! I’m an idiot. I don’t know why – but when I saw your comment I was thinking you were saying WW1 was the new trend… this might be in large part because I’m desperately hopeful it will be :)

  11. Sandy James
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 18:26:17

    @Stephanie Doyle:
    I hope YOUR book starts the trend! :D

  12. Kaetrin
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 19:05:33

    @Stephanie Doyle: I would love to read this.

  13. Kris Bock
    Oct 10, 2013 @ 09:18:53

    I’m not commenting specifically on the books mentioned in the first article, but you *can* treat writing as both an art and a business. In the last two years, I’ve written books for educational publishers on how magnets work, the environmental movement, dyslexia, and Chaco Canyon – not topics I chose, but all fascinating and fun to write. I’m finishing an article for a high school chemistry magazine on how diamonds are made. It’s cooler than I ever imagined! Regardless of the topic, I look for ways to make the material compelling and interesting, and I always enjoy the process. But I wouldn’t do these projects if I weren’t getting paid.

    Granted, my fiction is mainly romantic suspense (as Kris Bock) or historical fiction for middle grade kids (as Chris Eboch), and neither of those are hot trends. I wouldn’t want to devote the time it takes to write an entire novel for a genre I didn’t love. But I can certainly see how someone would like writing various genres and would choose the one that was most marketable, or might shift the balance in a story to include more romance or erotica so it would sell better. They could still love the writing and do their best.

    As for speed, I’ve worked with hundreds of writers, and I haven’t seen any correlation between the time it takes to write a piece and the quality. Some people write fast and well. Some people write quickly and poorly. Some people take forever to produce brilliant work. Some people take forever and the work still isn’t any good. I could debate what all that means, but I’ll be quiet and go back to work now instead. ;-)

  14. Sandy James
    Oct 10, 2013 @ 09:51:25

    @Kris Bock:
    I totally agree with you, Kris! There really isn’t a correlation between speed and quality! Every author has his/her own process.

  15. Evangeline
    Oct 10, 2013 @ 10:40:47

    Thanks Jane! :)

    @Stephanie Doyle: Yay! Me too!

    @Carolyne: “I’m all for encouraging more WWI-era books–I’ve been trying to get others to write them for me to read for much of my life :) I was hoping that with Downton Abbey–and various centennials–this would become more of a trend, but it’s been slow to build. In trad pub there still seems to be a resistance to books set in the era. Don’t know why. I can speculate, but I’d only be guessing.”

    WWI is overshadowed by WWII in America, and it doesn’t elicit “warm fuzzies” for UK readers. Over the course of my research of WWI, there are also a lot of people who are absolutely resistant to WWI as a backdrop for historical fiction. They prefer to get their WWI fix from non-fiction and documentaries that won’t use artistic license and add frivolous things (like *ahem* romance, ewwww!). Regarding Downton Abbey-inspired fiction: the books are out there (and to be released), but not in huge numbers, most likely because the historical market is currently soft.

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