Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Twenty-Thirteen (or Predicting the Future)

Tip of the Day: Read about Kate's 2013 goals here, and Tina's 2012 recap here.

Happy 2013, readers!

In my library world and writing life, I'm constantly thinking about...(read with a booming voice)... *The Future of Books and Reading.*

So what topics are occupying my mind? Probably the same ones that many of our readers are thinking about, namely:

1. Ebook sales to libraries. Will *all* publishers soon allow libraries to purchase and lend their ebooks? I hope so! Right now it looks to patrons like libraries are lagging behind in ebook purchases when in reality it is the publishers who have not yet decided how to sell these books. I can't wait for this perception and reality to change.

2. Ebook lending on OverDrive. Right now OverDrive, my library system's lending platform, does not allow all self-published books to be sold through OD to libraries so we can lend them to patrons. I'm not sure what the cost to OD is to "stock" books for libraries to purchase, but I know that as the YA Librarian I would love to be able to puchase and lend self-pubbed YA titles. Right now authors must apply to OD to sell their books and they can be rejected. I'm not sure why and I hope this changes.

3. New YA lines. Merit Press, Soho Teen, Entangled Teen, Spencer Hill Press, Month9Books, Strange Chemistry, Poisoned Pencil, Algonquin Teen.... Hopefully this list will continue to grow! I love having more options of lines to buy from for my library. I also love having more publishers that may be interested in reading my work! But with the popularity of YA fiction, will even more writers be submitting to these publishers, still making it hard to get noticed in a glutted market? I know good writing trumps all, but the reality is that pubs can only release so many books per season. Time will tell....

4. New YA agents. It seems that Chuck Sambuchino's Guide to Literary Agents Blog regularly posts new agents hunting for authors to rep, and many of them rep YA fiction. Yay! I'm so glad there are pros in the field who love YA fiction as much as I do. But when I look more closely I see that many of them do NOT rep MG fiction, which I also write...and some may actually be better agents for adult fiction and are only hoping to score a YA author since that is a hot seller now. OK, so I might be reading too much into agent interests, but it's hard for an MG/YA author to find the right agents to query for this reason.

5. New Adult: the "genre." This December 14 Publishers Weekly article on the "New Adult" label made the rounds last month and sparked many discussions about the topic on both writing boards and YA Librarian lists I belong to. I plan on giving my thoughts on this in more detail in another post, but for now I will say I am a) excited that books targeted to 18-24-year-olds are gaining momentum because it is a gap that needs filling, and b) I've always wanted to write stories featuring MCs of those ages so I like that the market is opening for them.

Thoughts on any of the (5) topics above?

Deena, Miss Subbing for Pubbing


Kristina Springer said...

I like writing with college age characters too and people have done this in YA (like Lauren Barnholdt) but we didn't call it NA. Is New Adult just YA + sex?

DeenaML said...

Tina, that's the thing: New Adult labeling seems to imply edginess, although to me it should just be college-aged MCs. Like the first version of your ESPRESSOLOGIST when every agent told you to make the MC in HS so it could sell.