One of the hardest things about breaking into publishing the way I did—moving directly from teaching into starting the publishing operation at TSTC—was that I didn’t know anyone in the field with whom to discuss the actual day-to-day realities of publishing beyond what I could learn from books I was reading. (And I sure didn’t know anyone with whom I could commiserate about those realities as well!) Thankfully, after casting around on the Internet, I have come across several industry-related blogs that I read on a fairly regular basis which give me that “friend in the biz” fix I needed.
Blogs come in all shapes and sizes with all kinds of intents and purposes. Some are not-so-thinly veiled marketing/promotional vehicles. Some are so technically nuts-and-bolts oriented that only the most dedicated insider could glean anything of interest from them. The blogs I like to read are ones that are a mix of the personal and professional—and which are posted to on a regular basis—where different aspects of the publishing industry are discussed from the perspective of someone who is in the mix of it on a daily basis. These three blogs below meet all of my necessary requirements for being a worthwhile expenditure of my time to keep up with and I hope that anyone interested in publishing might find them of interest as well. (Just click the name of any of the blogs below and the link will take you to it.)
Morris Rosenthal, of Foner Books, focuses his blog on the ways in which print-on-demand and e-book publishing have created a whole new model for self publishing. Given that, he is constantly pondering the big question as to whether this new model of POD and digital books are an end unto themselves or, as he asks, just a transitional phase between traditional self publishing models and free Internet distribution.
Anna Louise Genoese is self-admittedly cantankerous, easily annoyed, vegetarian, and an editor at Tor Books, a publisher of, among other genres, sci-fi and fantasy books. Her blog has much to do with day-to-life as a book editor in addition to many astute observations about the publishing industry that has attracted quite a following among her online readers. She also has a companion Web site, Anna’s Red Pen, where she has organized and archived much of what she has written about publishing.
Kristin Nelson describes herself as a very nice literary agent who indulges in polite rants about queries, writers, and the publishing industry on her blog. She is also the driving force behind the Nelson Literary Agency where she represents a number of authors who write in a variety of different areas.
As always, I have to note in closing that I can only vouch for these blogs above being ones I find interesting and, therefore, perhaps of some interest to others. I cannot make any claims (or endorsements) relating to the particular services offered by Anna Louise Genoese, Kristen Nelson, or Morris Rosenthal. I am just a dedicated lurker at their sites who appreciates what they have to say and how they say it. So, when I say “friend in the biz” as I did above, this refers entirely to the feelings I get from reading their blogs; it’s not an indicator of any actual personal/professional communication/relationship with them.