I just finished reading a wonderful essay on rewriting your novel based on critiques, etc.
I so wish I’d read something like that years ago — what a freeing way to write. The whole “get a bunch of people to read and critique your work” isn’t the “correct way” to write a book, although that’s what I’ve heard over and over again.
That blog post isn’t short, so make sure you have a little time before you dive into it, but please do take the plunge. Based on the 200+ comments it struck a chord with a lot of people.
According to a story on TechCrunch we’ve reached the tipping point.
EBook Revenues Beat Hardcovers For The First Time | TechCrunch
Hardcover revenues did go up, but it was only a 2.7% change while ebooks had a 28.1% rise.
While the “ebooks have arrived!” news is the big thing, look at the paperback book numbers — down almost the same percentage as ebooks went up. I think most people like the look of a row of hardcovers sitting on their shelves — paperbacks not so much. Paperbacks are more of a “read it then toss it” kind of thing. So why bother with paper when you can just go digital?
There are people who say, “Physical books will never go away.” and they’re right – the same way that horse and buggies never went away. But those are a little tiny niche that don’t mean anything to the vast majority of people today.
I think physical books will go the same way — and I think it will happen very quickly. Within 10 years for sure and it wouldn’t surprise me if it happened in the next 5 years.
Watch for these things to happen:
- One of the Big Six publishers will stop releasing paperbacks. Just hardcover and digital.
- At some point soon after that, one of those same publishers will release digital and a “limited number” of hardcovers. A “limited edition” of a new John Grisham book? Yeah, and they’ll double the typical price and sell out to the people who want to be special — as opposed to the people who want to read the book.
- Soon after, only some books will even see a hardcover edition at all.
Sure, I could be wrong. But I don’t think I am.
A friend of mine in the UK sent me a link to an article that was published “over there” last fall. It’s got some great advice on self-publishing ebooks and even includes a sidebar written by the guy who was the first self-published author to sell a million ebooks on Amazon.
How you can make a million writing your own ebook
There are some people who firmly believe they’ll never be a “published author” unless a big publishing house buys their book and it’s sitting in a bookstore. That’s fine, but it’s “dinosaur” thinking.
In the olden days people bought their books at a bookstore. It was the only option, so going through a publisher made sense. But brick and mortar bookstores are dying. And with electronic publishing everybody can see your book — you don’t need to have a physical book sitting on a shelf waiting for someone to walk by.
Thanks for the link, Mark!
Just recently I found a new website and I absolutely love the things this guy is saying.
He has written more than 90 novels and 100 short stories and has a lot of interesting things to say about self-publishing versus the traditional route.
One of the articles I just read this evening was about how many times you need to rewrite your story or novel before you send it out. He’s very opposed to getting feedback from other people on your work in progress, and rewrites in general. And he makes a very compelling case for why.
I’m a member of another forum online where a lot of writers hang out and I see so many people who are writing draft after draft after draft trying to get everything just perfect. They post part of their work online and ask for people to critique it. Folks come along and (in general) rip it to shreds. In a constructive way, of course.
And then the writer heads back to their desk to try again.
I’ve done the same thing because I thought that’s what “real” writers did.
Then this Dean fellow comes along and blows that myth out of the water.
I know some people will passionately disagree with him, but I think he makes a lot of sense. I do think getting some feedback is helpful at times, but for things where you slap your head and say, “Oh, I can’t believe I missed that!” — not for things that change the entire structure of your writing.
Here’s a link to the article where he talks about that, and be sure and read the comments afterwards. They are eye-opening as well.
Do you agree or disagree? Leave a comment here and let me know.