Thursday, August 05, 2010

Top Ten...

Things I learned at this year’s conferences… (Because I know how Molly loves lists and really it’s her week!)

1. Don’t say My Space when you mean Facebook – especially don’t do this in a room filled with published authors, big name editors and agents. It makes you look ridiculous. As a person who is known for mixing and matching clichés incorrectly (I’m forever “throwing a monkey at the wrench”) I’m very lucky I didn’t ask… “But how many followers should one have on My Face to be taken seriously?”

2. Big first print runs are huge for an author and an absolute must for success. Re-orders are bad and causes you to lose sales. Unless you’re at a different panel. Then small print runs are much better for the author with multiple re-orders.

3. Trade is up and a great thing. Unless you’re an author, then trade sucks and is a bad thing.

4. Editors don’t edit anymore. Unless you’re an editor who says that’s bullshit.

5. No one knows anything about eBooks but we’re pretty sure it’s going to be the end of publishing as we know it.

6. Numbers are down across the board in publishing – including the mega sellers! Yeah - I’m crying inside because James Patterson and Nora Roberts must be feeling the pinch.

7. Ride the hard. Sorry folks… it’s not as kinky as it sounds. It means knowing that publishing is hard and embracing it. As Maureen mentioned it was the theme of Nora’s keynote address. As queens go Nora is a formidable one. I love that she doesn’t let people whine and make excuses.

8. My face is as round as basketball. I know this because Harlequin decided it would be a good idea to take pictures of drinking women dancing their asses off. My ass is as round as… well let’s not go there. (Note the absence of pictures. I just came back from a 3 mile walk tonight.)

9. Picture drama aside – the Harlequin Party is and will always be the best party in town in my opinion.

10. Molly won the RITA and said very profoundly that part of what made it so great was being able to say thank you to all the people who made a difference in her writing life in such a public forum. That was really cool.

How often do we do that? We should. So thank you Molly, Maureen, Sinead and Eileen for making me think about writing every day.

And Karen W. thank you in advance because the other thing I learned at the conference is that I’m going to have finish my Victorian which means I’m going to need some major critiquing help!

So who do you all want to thank? (I also learned that you should end blog posts with a question.)


Maureen McGowan said...

Great post, Stephanie. And I'd like to thank everyone on this blog, and our followers and my other CP's for putting up with my angst.

I went to the Ontario Science Centre with my niece yesterday and they had this big exhibit on bias and point of view... and it put the conference into perspective for me. (along with your post).

We heard 3 or 4 talks all on the same topic. One from a publisher, one from two big authors, one a panel of major agents, one a panel of editors... and they all said contradictory things.

Bias. Point of view. Also the uncertainty right now, I guess... but even talking about the status quo they contradicted each other. Fascinating.

Molly O'Keefe said...

Unless ending with a question is bad, because it's insincere, or pandering... the panels were hugely contridactory. Eileen walked out of one because her head was going to explode and I left soon after for the same reason. We're looking for a light in the darkness, something concrete to work towards and stil STILL the only real truth - write a good book. The rest you just can't count on.

I do love a list, Steph - I think you looked great - drink in hand, doing it up Beyonce style. I loved that.

Karen W said...

Steph, you can dance woman! I've been there with you at the HQ party. And I'm up you to send me chapters any time you want - I LOVE that story. I now have a vested interest in it being sold and published!

Every year I've been to National (and I went to my first one in - gulp - 1993 or 1994) the info has been contradictory. At least about the industry. It's like trying to listen to analysts dissect the stock market or something . Again, all we can control is to write the best book we can. And I still have a quote from La Nora above my computer. It's from a talk she gave. It says "How Bad Do You Want It?" In other words, tough crap if you have to put your butt in the chair and write and you'd rather be shopping or swimming or outside or drinking (had to throw that one in!)

Glad to see you on Facebook Steph! What's next, Twitter?

Stephanie Doyle said...

Yes - I'm officially on facebook. Trying to figure out the landscape and such.

Twitter might be next but not until I master the first.

What's funny so far all the people who want to be friends... other romance writers!

Guess we all attended the same workshop!

Eileen said...

Oh, definitely gotta thank my blog sisters here. Talk about voices of sanity in the chaos!

After hearing all the contradictory (and often downer stuff) at the conference, I developed a new publishing philosophy. It's "Whatever."

I can't do anything about the economy or what bookstores are stocking of Internet piracy. So . . . whatever.

Maria Geraci said...

Yep, that pretty much sums up the conference! Great meeting you, Stephanie:)

Sinead M said...

sounds like such an interesting conference...

And Steph, would love have seen you beyoncing it up at the Hqn party...

Come to Toronto soon...

Stephanie Doyle said...

Oh I can totally Beyonce it up.... All the Single Ladies is like my anthem.

I do the "uh uh oh, oh oh oh, uh uh oh, oh oh" part... really well :)

Eileen said...

Aieee!!!! Ear worm!!! No I'm going to be walking around humming "Single Ladies" for the rest of the week!

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