When to call it quits?

Discussion in 'Traditional Publishing' started by Adam Bolander, Nov 24, 2020.

  1. jimmybobb

    jimmybobb New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2020
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    4
    Mostly yes.
    But if your name is Rowling or Patterson they actually do a lot of marketing. It is the new and minor writers who have to do it all themselves.
     
  2. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2016
    Messages:
    18,133
    Likes Received:
    21,129
    Location:
    East devon/somerset border
    Self publishing absolutely...

    Trad publishing - no they don't... if you get a trad deal the publisher will pay for the editing... its part of what they do for 90% of your print royalties and 75% of your ebook royalties (ballpark)... a first timer may need an editor to get their work good enough to get a deal, but its a fallacy to suggest that everyone does
     
  3. jimmybobb

    jimmybobb New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2020
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    4
    I have been in the publishing biz. There was a time when that was true. But these days there are many publishers who do not edit at all.
    They expect that your agent had it edited or else you paid to have it edited, else it gets published warts and all -- if they bought it at all.
     
  4. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2016
    Messages:
    18,133
    Likes Received:
    21,129
    Location:
    East devon/somerset border
    but were they editted ? I'm not trying to be harsh but i looked at a couple of look insides and i was seeing simple errors like word duplication and repetition that a competent editor should have redlined.

    i think your readers are right - you can write... but you need the services of a professional or significant beta reading to tighten things up
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2020
  5. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2016
    Messages:
    18,133
    Likes Received:
    21,129
    Location:
    East devon/somerset border
    I'm sorry but no... there is not one proper publisher in the world of publishing that puts work out unedited (vanities excepted)... nor do any of them expect that your agent will have had the book edited, that's not the purpose of an agent and they know it

    End of the day publishers exist to make money - and they know they won't make money publishing uneditted dross
     
  6. jimmybobb

    jimmybobb New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2020
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    4

    I have to disagree. And If I kept them I could show you the books I bought that prove it.
    Publishers want to make money. Editing costs money.
    They see what they have as better than most amazon ebooks so they expect them to sell well even if uneditd.
     
  7. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2016
    Messages:
    18,133
    Likes Received:
    21,129
    Location:
    East devon/somerset border
    Put it this way

    Penguin random house :https://www.the-scheme.co.uk/
    Simon and Schuster:https://www.simonandschuster.co.uk/c/ss-uk-corporate-information
    Harper Collins : https://www.harpercollins.com/pages/harperbooks-team
    Hachette Book group : https://www.hachettebooks.com/imprint/perseus/hachette-books/page/meet-hachette-books/
    Pan Macmillan : https://trade.panmacmillan.com/contacts/macmillan

    That's the big five - and what do you know they all have editorial teams that work with their authors

    Obviously further down the scale there may be less reputable houses that don't bother with hiring editors ... but frankly my suggestion would be that a house like that isn't bringing much to the table over and above what you can achieve as a self publisher

    For adams OP - if you are going for a trad deal you may wish to hire an editor to help polish your manuscript but you absolutely don't have to if you can achieve that polish in other ways
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2020
  8. Adam Bolander

    Adam Bolander Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2010
    Messages:
    314
    Likes Received:
    140
    [​IMG]
     
  9. Naomasa298

    Naomasa298 HP: 12/210 MP: 0/130 Contributor

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2019
    Messages:
    3,205
    Likes Received:
    3,684
    Location:
    The White Rose county, UK
    What about Bloomsbury?
     
  10. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2016
    Messages:
    18,133
    Likes Received:
    21,129
    Location:
    East devon/somerset border
    Who belongs in the big 5 is a tedious discussion for a different thread... some people put Bloomsbury instead of Hachette, others favour Oxford University Press... a controversial case could also be made for Thomas and Mercer and the other Apub imprints

    We don't need to go into that here - the important point is that all of the above also have editorial teams that work with their authors
     
  11. Naomasa298

    Naomasa298 HP: 12/210 MP: 0/130 Contributor

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2019
    Messages:
    3,205
    Likes Received:
    3,684
    Location:
    The White Rose county, UK
    Oh, I wasn't questioning whether they belong in the big 5. I meant, wouldn't they be a reputable company to get a trad publishing deal with too? I imagine there are companies outside the big 5 with whom deals would still be prestigious (Bloomsbury was the first one to spring to mind because I work for a company that supplies them services).

    I imagine all the reputable ones work in a very similar way.
     
  12. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2016
    Messages:
    18,133
    Likes Received:
    21,129
    Location:
    East devon/somerset border
    yep pretty much any major publisher you can google 'meet the team' and they'll have a bunch of editors and editorial assistants, even the more minor publishers if they are reputable (be aware that the bigger ones like Bloomsbury may have multiple imprint names and list their staff under each imprint)

    for example picking four more or less at random from reedsy's list of reputable small presses

    http://www.akashicbooks.com/staff/
    https://catapult.co/pages/who-we-are
    https://coffeehousepress.org/pages/staff
    https://milkweed.org/about

    This is a point that has direct applicability to Adams original point... if you're going to make unagented submissions, do your due diligence and spend a little time with google researching the houses to which you are submitting... you have to dig about a bit on some of them but most reputable presses will have a 'meet the team' or 'about us' section... on which you can check that they do have editorial teams and other teams that work with authors to produce good product.

    You can also check that they aren't vanties at the same time (any publisher who wants to charge you for services is one to run screaming from)
     
  13. jimmybobb

    jimmybobb New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2020
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    4

    Well if they actually edit and not just say they edit then a lot of their editors are incompetent based on all the continuity errors, confused writing, SPAG errors, and other problems not to mention plot holes and generally dull or unbelievable actions the many books I read last year had.

    Several of them had no plot at all and were just huge slabs of life that some pantser wrote with stream of consciousness and had no point to them. Others were clearly edited to remove things but then they left some remnants that did not fit at all without doing a final check to see if it all made sense after the changes.

    Worse are the British novels that use slang and common terms there which have no meaning for a US reader. I dont mind the spelling but there are so many words I have never heard of but appear to describe something common.
     
  14. Selbbin

    Selbbin The Moderating Cat Staff Contributor

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2012
    Messages:
    4,543
    Likes Received:
    3,450
    Location:
    Australia
    That's a very strange criticism. You don't understand a word so they were bad at editing? They can't account for some readers not knowing things. Look it up.
     
    pyroglyphian likes this.
  15. jimmybobb

    jimmybobb New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2020
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    4
    I understood most of the words but the UK specific ones I do not know and that is annoying to US readers.
    A good editor would have changed things so they made sense here. I can mentally do Lift=Elevator but there are many others that I cannot.
    And I suspect most US readers cannot either.

    Many of those books were printed in both countries so clearly there was either no editing on the US version.

    Other books published in US for US readers had many of those other bad mistakes I noted. And others too.
     
  16. Naomasa298

    Naomasa298 HP: 12/210 MP: 0/130 Contributor

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2019
    Messages:
    3,205
    Likes Received:
    3,684
    Location:
    The White Rose county, UK
    Perhaps it was a deliberate editorial choice to preserve the integrity of the original manuscript. Obviously, as it would have originally been written for British readers, it would have used British slang. US books published in the UK rarely, as far as I have seen, re-write US slang into its British equivalents, and it would look very strange, an American character saying "bollocks".
     
  17. Selbbin

    Selbbin The Moderating Cat Staff Contributor

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2012
    Messages:
    4,543
    Likes Received:
    3,450
    Location:
    Australia
    I'm constantly having to put up with US words and spelling. But that's ok, I don't expect them to change it for every territory. That would be unreasonable and require too many editions.
     
    alw86 and Naomasa298 like this.
  18. big soft moose

    big soft moose An Admoostrator Staff Supporter Contributor Community Volunteer

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2016
    Messages:
    18,133
    Likes Received:
    21,129
    Location:
    East devon/somerset border
    we're getting a little off topic ... but "i read some bad books once" isnt really compelling evidence for "tradtional publishers don't hire editors"

    Also. to me its more important that idiom matches the character rather than the territory in which its sold... ie an American character should speak American not British and vice versa... I don't expect Jack Reacher to start saying boot, bonnet, accelerator and pavement just because the book is being sold in the UK
     
    Naomasa298 likes this.
  19. jimmybobb

    jimmybobb New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2020
    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    4

    Perhaps. I suspect they just did not want to spend the money to edit it from UK to US English.
     
  20. Cephus

    Cephus Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Messages:
    653
    Likes Received:
    733
    Most books are bad no matter where you get them. I've read a lot of really bad books that have come out from Big Five publishers. There are no guarantees in life. Everyone is competing for the same customers. Self-pubbed authors have the advantage if they can write faster and be released more often than their traditionally published counterparts because most of the people are looking for new content right now. If you can write well and produce fast and get your books in front of the right eyes, you'll do okay. You just have to be able to do all three of those. Two out of the three doesn't mean a thing.
     
    jimmybobb likes this.
  21. Cephus

    Cephus Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Messages:
    653
    Likes Received:
    733
    They do hire editors, but like everyone else, editing is just subjective. There is no "perfection" to which anyone can aspire and the best author in the world can ruin a book by going to the wrong editor, just as a terrible writer can be much improved by using a good one. None of this is a panacea, there's no such thing and people need to stop pretending that no matter how terrible their writing is, they can just send it to a random editor they find off Fiverr and it will all be okay.
     
  22. Cephus

    Cephus Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Messages:
    653
    Likes Received:
    733
    Localization is a thing, even in novels. My daughter does it for a living.
     
  23. somemorningrain

    somemorningrain Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2020
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    42
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Spiritual author Thomas Moore has some very empathetic and insightful things to say about the creative process:

    He points out that very few of us seem immune to the need for enormous acceptance and adulation. "If the public accepts you, life is exciting. If it ignores you, your spirits may slump". For a start, he advises us to take back some of the adulation we give to others.

    Then he says that if we're going to be creative, we must live the whole story. We have to take the dark nights with the brilliant successes. We have to endure criticism and failure. He advises us to "work hard and remain open to the muse." To be creative is to risk criticism and rejection. The successes would not be so sweet and sought-after if there were no such risks.

    Whereas we can't always change the response the world gives us, we can change our attitude to that response: "The ordinary keeps you humble rather than humiliated," Moore says, "and productive rather than poised anxiously on an illusion of greatness."

    If we weren't writing, we might well feel depressed and unfulfilled. On the other hand, if we are writing, we often find ourselves in yet another tunnel of frustration and disillusionment. A case of damned if we do, damned if we don't!

    I have found that it's best to keep trying - 'keep sending out', pushing against obstacles. But don't be too disillusioned by periods of disillusionment. Take those slumps of hopelessness and depression as part of the process. Allow yourself to put down your pen, lock away ('trunk publish') your manuscript, throw in the towel, do something else. But then trust that the sun will lure you out again to try again another day.

    We may never get to where we want, but it's the 'try' that counts, surely. What would you be doing if you weren't writing? - engaging in some unhealthy addiction or in some 'lesser' pastime that yields 'nothing to show for it'? All pastimes have some value though, I reckon, if they're keeping us out of prison, the psychiatric hospital or the grave.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2021
    Xoic likes this.
  24. Cephus

    Cephus Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Messages:
    653
    Likes Received:
    733
    I completely reject that personally. I have no interest in fame. I actively reject it. It's why I write under a pseudonym because I don't want to be recognized on the street or hounded by fans. It's one of the reasons that back when I had a Big 5 publishing contract on the table, I turned it down because I'd be expected to do things that I had no interest in doing. I'm a writer. I don't want to be a celebrity. It's fine if you want to send me money, I like that part, but if you want me to sit there and read to you or do personal appearances or whatever, forget it. Read my book. Leave me alone.
     
    Dorafjol likes this.
  25. Xoic

    Xoic Prognosticator of Arcana Ridiculosum Contributor

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2019
    Messages:
    2,852
    Likes Received:
    4,195
    Location:
    edge of the spacetime continuum
    Yeah, if you took out the part about
    Much of the rest of it is good. I mean, some acceptance is nice, adulation I can do without though.
     
    somemorningrain likes this.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice