Today we kick off with a report by Mandy Verbaan on the opening session of the conference, A Year in Romance by guest speaker Rebecca Crowley, author with Carina Press and Samhain Publishing.
Then along came #weneeddiverseromance off the back of #weneeddiversebooks which prompted a RITA nomination of a romance between a Nazi hero and a Jewish concentration camp heroine. A bizarre book nomination which got shortlisted and opened up numerous heated discussions. Although book publishers are looking for diversity, they surely cannot accept storytelling without respect and honour?
So where does that leave us? With constantly changing opportunities!
- Publishers are going down or thriving. We will soon have a core group of publishers to pitch to.
- Marketing needs to change. Blog tours and book reviews are not selling books like they used to so we need to find innovative ways to sell our books.
- New voices and innovative stories are more popular than ever.
- Rise of the hybrid author where we can publish across multiple channels – various known publishers as well as self-publishing is no longer an anomaly.
As we move forward in time we see more authors going the hybrid route. This new author is savvy and is building a repertoire of books that are publisher backed, self-published, sold through or without agents and are able to have complete control over their pipeline alongside receiving the support of publishers. And if this sounds like it’s the best of all worlds – that’s because it is!
So what will we need to produce next year? What’s the next big thing?
The great thing about being in a writing industry going through a progressive phase is that it’s a perfect time to be bold, different and innovative. But most of all … it’s time to be you!
Rebecca’s talk was informative, funny and entirely uplifting. Now that we know we can get the ins and outs of the industry again next year we can all go back into our writing caves to produce that best seller that is clamouring to be written.