On Saturday, March 9, I went to a Society of Childrens’ Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) monthly meeting at BookPeople in Austin. The featured speaker was Lindsey Scheibe, whose YA book, Riptide, will be launched on May 19. Her talk was about “Pursuing Publication: Tools for Success.”
Scheibe’s presentation was low-key, loaded with helpful information and personal anecdotes on her own road to publication.
Scheibe reads from 15-20 industry blogs a day. It’s part of self education about news and trends in the publishing field. It’s a way to find out about current expectations in the market. For instance, she mentioned that even though a writer might harbor great nostalgia for favorite childhood books, the writer who desires publication will find out what publishers expect right now.
On the subject of querying, Scheibe said that publishing is a subjective business. Will your manuscript suit the publisher’s branding? Is it marketable enough to profit them? It’s a publishing house‘s job to be financially solvent.
“It’s not for me” is not personal, it’s business. From a sales perspective, it’s a numbers game. Rejection brings the writer one step closer to the right agent for her project.
Other tools for publishing success include reading a lot of kidlit, all different kinds, reading industry blogs, networking, attending conferences, and getting critique partners. Also perseverance and belief in oneself.
I find it good to be reminded that publishing is a business, that publishers have to pay the light bill, and that a manuscript rejection is not personal.
I came away from the meeting with a lot of new blog names and a list of new books to read.
Best of luck to you with Riptide, Lindsey Scheibe. Your talk was realistic, forthright, practical, and encouraging.
Now, back to queries!
- Wild, Wild Midwest SCBWI Meeting (luminisbooks.wordpress.com)
- New Writers, eBook Publishers, and the Power to Negotiate (whatever.scalzi.com)
- Are writing contests a good place to get noticed? (chipmacgregor.com)
- Query Advice (writerhughes.wordpress.com)
- scbwi Austin (storybooky.wordpress.com)