Friday, February 6, 2009

Butterfly words and timeflies

40 years ago I went to the park to play with my sister. My uncle paid for us to take a boat out on the old pond that was next to he swings and slides. I found the photograph when I was trying to tidy up. I am the one at the front, my sister doing all the work with the paddles. Time flies.

Still waiting to hear from the designer though I believe ideas fly back and forth between Tessa and her as they try to fix the look and the line of the text.
Meanwhile I could not get to work because of the snow and was very gratified to hear the writer, Andy Hamilton, say the same thing, even though like me he works at home. The lure of playing in the snow was just too much.

Still trying to work out which way to go forward with blogs. I have spoken to another publisher about nursery rhymes and she is sending me a contract. Things don't usually happen that quickly in publishing. This is a publisher I have had a long, sometimes rocky but fine at the moment, relationship with, and we had talked about rhymes a few years back, before dragons, so the contract has been sitting on hold. Because it is a different publisher I would start a new blog with this.
And I have finally managed to capture the words for Little Evie in the Darkwoods. Words are like butterflies sometimes, but they have flown together and for now the text is with Tessa at Barefoot, though I am not sure that it will go with their list. I hope so. So for now, and because people asked, I have blogged the start and progress of the book over at my journal on my website. And for now I have to wait, for Tessa to read and then get back to me, and if she does not like it, or feel that it is right, then it has to go off into the world to try and find the right home. It is such a very difficult time for books at the moment and so very hard to get work viewed by publishers. I do not have an agent, although that is one road people take. I am a member of The Society of Authors and they are very good and will check contracts and offer advice. (It took me such a long time to be able to say, when people ask me what I do, that I am a painter and a writer.) I have been in publishing offices and seen manuscripts just taken from one envelope and put into another and returned with a standard letter. Piles of them, mountains, wait to be read.
All publishers try to get as many foreign editions as they can for a book. If the print run is large then the unit cost per book is reduced so the profit is maximized. Almost all of my books are published in Danish, all in the USA and I have a particularly good publisher in France who did wonderful things with The Snow Leopard. Now I also have a Spanish publisher.
I feel fairly sure that the French and Spanish publishers will like Little Evie. Anyway, she has taken her first steps out into the world now.


Morning's Minion said...

I see your Mum dressed you in matching outfits. Mine did that also. By the time we were in the middle grades of school my sister and I had very different choices in clothes and do to this day. I remember we had jerseys almost like yours--only red.

Jackie Morris said...

Now I am having flashbacks t the days of crimpelene! I remember two identical blue dresses, sky blue, with yokes and a dark blue velvet bow on the chest. White ankle socks and sandals ( I always love kids snadals and like the way Dr Martins do grown up versions) Not only did we both wear the same dresses at the same time but I had to have my sisters when she had outgrown it!
Also remember a bright yellow nightmare of a dress which caused an dislike of yellow that still lives with me to this day!

my croft said...

My Mom dressed me in pink when I was little, especially for special occasions. I preferred white, but white is not a wise choice for children's clothing. Still. . .
I was in my 30s (maybe my 40s) before I warmed to pink.

I've been one of those awful people at the publishing company who shift mss. from one evelope to the other. When I started, I promised myself I would give each ms. a fair read. After a while, though (and not too long a while) I realized they didn't all deserve it. At each end of the spectrum are a handful of things that are wonderful and a handful of things that are, frankly, awful, but in between there are a great number of things that are very good. Even the very good might be swiftly shifted from one envelope to another for a variety of business reasons -- the first of which were always "we don't publish this kind of book" and "just did one just like this" and it's corollary "too trendy." This still left a fairly large array of things that had to be more carefully weighed and considered -- considered in light of the house's business concerns ("fits the list," as you've mentioned), resources, and schedule.

On the one hand, I was always uplifted that there are so many people doing so much good work; on the other, I was saddened that so relatively little of it could be printed and bound. I always told my writing students: "If your work is declined, it will be declined for business reasons, not because you lack talent, vision, or drive. It's a business, not a club." It's the hardest lesson.

Jessie Lilac said...

Consider yourself a writer Jackie! You have a magical way with words that are like listening to music, I love to read your journal, it inspires the soul.x

Joanna Dover said...

What a great pic! I also remember the matching outfits - and being the younger sister, when i grew out of my outfit - i grew into my siters old one - so I always wore the same outfit twice as long!