Edmund Schubert came to both the Creative Writing I and II classes and spoke about publishing and writing today.
He talked about how he is the editor for Orson Scott Card's online literary magazine Intergalactic Medicine Show
and how he looks at a lot of different people's work and tries his best
on deciding on what pieces should be in the magazine. "Character is very important and so is story." He wants the writing to flow without any "speed bumps"
allowing him to get "lost in the story."
The classes got to ask questions. One question was what did he do
when he got writer's block? He answered that when he gets
writer's block that he tends to fall back into his editor mode and edits
his work. He said one can over-edit a piece to
death and never finish writing the story. So he said, "Never lose
the momentum." One just needs to keep going and not stop until he or she gets to the end. Editing is
something that can be done later, but getting a story down on paper
while one is in the momentum of writing is the hard part.
Schubert explained to us the difference between getting a literary agent and self-publishing. The big advantage to going with a literary agent that gets you into the big publishing houses in New York like, Random House, Penguin etc. is that these these publishing houses can get you into Barnes & Nobles.
Going with small publishing houses is still good, but will not get one into Barnes & Nobles. Writers who self-publish their ebooks get 70% of the profits on a quarterly basis. They get to control what the cover looks like and have the instant gratification of publishing right away rather than waiting around two or three years.
Either way, all writers have to do their own marketing these days. They need a "platform" whether this is done by blogging, social media, or reading in front of audiences.
Often big publishers keep an eye on what ebooks are selling the most and will then approach those writers to do their print books. "Nowadays," Schubert said, "self-publishing a book is the new platform for writers."
(This blog was written by Golda Fried and Nicole Cline.)