Friday, June 22, 2007

On writing and a bit of news

For anyone aspiring to have their work published, there's a very illuminating entry in Scott Pack's blog today that's entitled What was the name of the chap who rejected the Beatles?

Scott is the commercial director of the The Friday Project, an independent publishing house in the UK. I'm delighted because they will publish A Son Called Gabriel early next year and my second novel, Unusual Steps, thereafter.

I love independent publishers and TFP is the perfect house for me because it has the energy, creativity and huge enthusiasm of a small house backed by the distribution muscle of Pan Macmillan which gets their books into all the places where books ought to be. Scott will be my editor for Unusual Steps and we've already begun the edits a few weeks ago. It's hugely exciting because he 'gets' the novel and he actually edits, as opposed to some at the larger houses who, due to corporate policy and/or lack of experience, do no editing at all. As I go through the process I'll post my thoughts.

Anyway, back to writing and the acquisition process. I think it's wonderful and very useful that writers are able to tap into insights like this from a publisher's perspective. And, while he's realistic and remarks how competitive the market is, he gives encouragement and hope to unpublished writers, which is vital. He also talks about writing competitions.

Without the net and blogging, it just wouldn't be possible to get such valuable info.

Here's the link:
Me and My Big Mouth


Caroline said...

That's fantastic news. A Son Called Gabriel is outstanding. I can't wait to have a Friday Project edition too!

Georganna Hancock said...

Congratulations! I'm so happy for you to have a publisher for your second novel now. Coincidentally, I mentioned The Friday Project recently in a post about blogs that become books. Your comments about larger publishers no longer editing is also very interesting. For your writing readers, I hope you elaborate.

Damian McNicholl said...

Thank you, Caroline. happy to read about all your own good news.

Georganna, many thanks. TFP really is a very interesting publisher.
Regarding large publishers--there are some editors who still do great editing there. But they are senior and have reputations and are not worried about keeping their jobs, etc. The younger ones, especially those straight out of university, really aren't getting the experience editors got in the days when publishers weren't huge conglomerations. Even copy-editing isn't to the same standard.