Okay, so I got behind the power curve last night and didn't write a post for today. And though it's early here (7 AM), it's noon on the east coast. Y'all think I'm a slacker. 😉
I have nothing original to say today. I've got to head into Honolulu in a little bit, so that's on my mind. I'm waiting for the morning rush hour to be over. We have horrendous traffic on this little island, believe me. If I can avoid it, I will.
So, two things. First, the New York Times is reporting on the move to trade paperback originals for literary novels.
“In the last four or five years, it's gotten hard to publish fiction by lesser-known authors, and even by some better-known authors,” said Morgan Entrekin, the publisher of Grove/Atlantic. And when a book fails in hardcover, booksellers often will limit their orders for a paperback edition, making it harder to sell the author's next book. “When you're taking back 50 to 70 percent of the hardcover copies you shipped,” Mr. Entrekin said, “the stores — rightfully so — are not willing to take another chance.”
As the article points out, many folks don't want to spend the $22 in hardcover for authors unknown to them. $13.95 is more reasonable. And, I gotta admit, I'm the type of person who waits for the paperback. Partly, it's the military mindset: we gotta move with this stuff. I don't need hardbacks taking up my weight allowance. Second, $22 is a lot of money, to me, for one book. I ain't independently wealthy here.
Anyway, read the article. The numbers are interesting, as are the thoughts on the review process.
The second thing is another fabulous blog post by fellow Aloha Chapter member Tess Gerritsen. (I know she's much more than a fellow chapter member, but hey, it gives me a thrill to say she's in my chapter.)
When you write, you are opening a spigot from your brain, pouring out memories and thoughts and dreams onto the page. Leave that spigot on too long, without refilling the source of your creativity, and what you get is a drained and exhausted writer.
That's how I felt when I turned in the manuscript for THE MEPHISTO CLUB. Emptied out of all my creative juices. I call it writer's anemia. Real anemia leaves you weak and exhausted and pale. Writer's anemia is much the same — except that the pallor shows up on the page. Your writing loses all color. Your plot feels dead. Your characters wander through the story like ghosts of themselves.
The only cure is a transfusion — not of blood, but of real-life experiences.
Isn't that the truth? (Oh, btw, Tess uses this post to announce she's going to Libya. Whoa, cool!) Often, I can stay holed up in my house for a week, refusing to go anywhere because I want to work on my book. And I feel it at the end of the week. I don't want to be off every day having coffee at Starbucks or haunting Waikiki in search of stimulation, but I do have to be open to life experiences. This week, I gave up my Wednesday night group. I missed it, even though we usually don't accomplish much. I missed the conversation and the bookstore.
So, today, since I have an errand taking me into town anyway, I'll try to meander back home, maybe stop at B&N or Borders. Borders has a balcony from which you can see the ocean (of course it's a cloudy, rainy sky and a leaden ocean these days, blech). I have taken my Alphie and written up there in the past. Maybe I'll try it today. Or maybe not. Maybe I'll just have a coffee and a magazine and watch the people. Aloha nui loa. 🙂