Self-Publishing News: 7.7.2020

National Strawberry Sundae Day vector

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

Some good news for parents out of the Big Sky State! Many parents have found themselves in the unique position of having to be educators as well as bread-winners, and with case numbers all over the map (literally as well as figuratively), it doesn’t look like that will be changing any time soon. Whether you’re electing to be cautious in states like Montana that have begun to reopen or following state and federal recommendations elsewhere, a much-needed resource has arrived to fill the gap. Writing for Helena’s Independent Record, Tyler Manning writes about how “Two Helena teachers recently self-published a kindergarten readiness guide for parents.” The project had been in the works for six years or more, but this proved just the right moment for teachers (to observe proper classroom etiquette) Ms. Hankins and Ms. Buresh to self-publish. As Manning puts it:

According to Hankins, they had many tips but verbally explaining them lots of individual parents wasn’t wholly effective. The pair then had the idea to start writing down tips, idea and exercises. Before they knew it, they had enough to write a book.

The book takes the form of activity pages for each letter of the alphabet. It teaches concepts like numbers, shapes, colors, vocabulary and more. Hankins said the book also aims to answer many of the social questions that parents have as their children start school for the first time.

“It’s two-fold,” said Hankins. “It’s to get the kids ready and to put parents minds at ease.”

While the material might have been embraced by a traditional publishing house, the lag time would have prevented many parents from getting their hands on the book when they most need it––which is now. According to another article from the Independent Record, Helena’s schools are still aiming to reopen for the Fall semester, despite a recent rise in recorded statewide COVID-19 cases that will still seem small to those states with city-concentrated populations. In any case, this local Montana effort will hopefully signal the start of a new wave of high-quality self-published resources for parents of young children that are both timely and teacher-tested as this one seems to be. 

Tyler Manning’s coverage includes much more and is worth reading in its own right. You can find out more about Hankins, Buresh, and their book at www.summerbeforekindergarten.com. More news soon!


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

Self-Publishing News: 5.19.2020

On-trend 2020 calendar page for the month of May modern flat lay

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

In a sense we’ve known this was a possibility for a while, what with occasional Wattpad stories being plucked from the milieu and given a Netflix movie or Hulu series adaptation or some similar development–mostly when folks already in the media business stumbled across specific stories on Wattpad and requested film rights. Now, however, it is one of the platform’s company goals to transform cloud-sourced and user-created content into other forms of media, writes the Globe and Mail‘s Technology Reporter, Sean Silcoff. Wattpad, a platform which allows its users to self-publish both short and long-form works (in installments) for little or no cost, and has turned that content into its most marketable product by paying close attention to the analytics. Those stories which perform strongly on the platform in terms of readership might just make the right material for an adaptation, they seem to suspect. Writes Silcoff,

Wattpad has close to 50 TV and film projects in development after a string of successes. Those include The Kissing Booth, based on a Wattpad story, which was one of the most-watched films on Netflix in 2018, and After, based on a popular young adult romance series by Anna Todd that started life on Wattpad, was one of the top-grossing independent movies of last year. Hulu series Light as a Feather, another Wattpad adaptation, was nominated for a Daytime Emmy.

Still, it’s difficult to pin one’s hopes on a company where you are the primary product being bartered for, and where only 50 stories are on development out of the “millions” (Silcoff’s word, not ours!) of contributing authors and their contributions. It would seem that the same skills and talents, resources and investments, pay off on Wattpad just like with any other platform or self-publishing company.


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

 

Self-Publishing News: 5.12.2020

On-trend 2020 calendar page for the month of May modern flat lay

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

It is one of many ironies in the world that there are now traditionally published books and authors recommending that their fellow writers go indie. Such is the case with author Courtney Maum, whose book Before and After the Book Deal: A Writer’ Guide to Finishing, Publishing, Promoting, and Surviving Your First Book was released in January. Maum, in an interview with Diane Slocum of Authorlink®’s Writers and Readers magazine, surprised a few by pushing back against the misconception that traditional and self-publishing are somehow at odds with each other, or mutually exclusive. Says Maum:

Honestly, what I tell a lot of people is that not all books need to be—or even should be—published in the traditional way. There is a place for guerilla publishing, for self-publishing, for making your own zines—there are a lot of books that find their way to readers off the beaten path, not on it. Publishing with traditional houses is a privilege and it’s super exciting, for sure. But it is hard. It is incredibly competitive. You have to be “on” all the time and good at all the social media stuff in a way that many writers aren’t. You’re going to be really visible. You make one misstep, the Internet might come for you. You are going to have colleagues who aren’t going to like your book, parents who won’t read it, writers you admire who won’t blurb it, you will get bad reviews. Some people are literally not going to be able to withstand the emotional damage to write another book. It can be a very harmful experience, publishing a book. It can be joyful and rewarding and exciting too, of course. But you need to be made of very stiff cloth to hold up against the winds of favor. I self-published a collection of short stories in my twenties and I also have a chapbook. I’m proud of those little books. That was the right form for them, they found their perfect path. Every book has a different destiny and not every book’s destiny is going to be Penguin Random House.

What a fantastic way to start off the week!


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

 

Self-Publishing News: 5.5.2020

Well, due to the way the dates have shaken out with our weekly schedule, we have officially missed the two best May-themed memes that there are:

it's gonna be may Justin Timberlake

… and …

Art Deco May the 4th be with you (May 4) Star Wars celebration Day text.

Be that as it … ahem … may, we have some news for you this week!

On-trend 2020 calendar page for the month of May modern flat lay

We apologize for the interruption to our normal routine! This has certainly been a disrupting time for everyone, not just us, and we hope that now we are settling into all of our respective new routines that this post finds you well and thriving despite the difficulties.

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

We’ve written often on the virtues and happenings in the world of zines for self-publishing authors, both as a first platform for experimentation and as a sort of written publication that is so fast in its turnaround time that it provides the perfect way to respond to current events. This is certainly the case with the zines featured in Ysabelle Cheung’s article for HyperAllergic.com last week, which includes the telling subtitle: “There may never have been a better time for the zine, since as COVID-19 rages on, many artists are turning to self-publishing as an alternative way to connect while in isolation.” Cheung, citing the input of zine expert Beatrix Pang, notes that there has been an uptick in zine publications (including zines specifically relating to COVID-19) during the global slowdown associated with the virus. Writes Cheung, some of the best “includ[e] Pop & Zebra’s The New Coronavirus Abecedary, a mini-zine of COVID-19 terminology, and artist Eunice Tsang’s forthcoming No Play Today, featuring photos of cordoned-off playgrounds. In this time of anxiety, Pang says, ‘A zine can narrate ephemeral and mundane daily life experiences, and also deliver important messages and advocate for individual or collective freedom.'” If you have been thinking about self-publishing a zine, or self-publishing in general, but haven’t quite known what to do to get started, we highly recommend taking a look at Cheung’s article and paging through some of the examples if you can. Maybe one day soon we can look forward to getting a glimpse into your quarantine life … by way of a quaranzine!


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

 

Self-Publishing News: 4.14.2020

the word "april" from the wooden letters

We apologize for the interruption to our normal routine! This has certainly been a disrupting time for everyone, not just us, and we hope that now we are settling into all of our respective new routines that this post finds you well and thriving despite the difficulties.

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

There have been many interesting by-products of the virus-related shutdown, but one of the most significant ones as far as we are concerned is the potential for self-publishing to flourish under the new restrictions. “Authors are rushing to dust off dystopian tales which might once have joined the list of great unpublished novels,” writes Adam Sherwin of inews.co.uk. (One assumes that he’s not talking about authors who have children at home to manage who would otherwise be at daycare or school while they were at work.) Sherwin focuses on the specific development of one manuscript by thriller writer Peter May, who began writing the book Lockdown after a previous, less severe pandemic. Sherwin also covers several other newly-released books that touch on the novel coronavirus in some way, including A. M. Smith’s self-published novel Muller, which was likewise inspired by earlier historic episodes of contagion.

Here’s an interesting food-for-thought article by Mike Coker for Publisher’s Weekly, which in summary poses and attempts to answer the question: Has Amazon become just as much a bookish gatekeeper as the remaining Big Five traditional publishing houses that preceded it? And if so, are the authors who self-publish through its platform truly indie authors? We’d be really curious to hear what you think. (Comment below with your thoughts!)

Estelle Erasmus has opinions, and she’s here to share them in a recent article for Forbes. “COVID-19 has many of us hunkering down in place and social distancing. If you are a writer, and have all your survival needs met (food, shelter, support), then it might be the opportunity you need to get your story written,” she says, and in the perfect follow up to Sherwin’s article on books already making it into the world, she has some tips for those looking to make the most of that opportunity by getting your own story out there. From crafting a narrative arc to asking yourself the right questions as you move forward, this article is a concise and ultimately straightforward set of suggestions that are worth considering, if they fit with your own life and routine.


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.