My, what a topic starter. I could go just about anywhere from here… Break out into song, “Wouldn’t it be nice if we were older, then we wouldn’t have to wait so long…” Except, I can’t carry a note to save my life and I would hate to see all your lovely ears bleed. Then I could do the, Wouldn’t it be nice if it wasn’t already December, because I can’t remember much of the eleven months that came before this? Except, why dwell on what has already happened when there are so many delightful moments yet to come? Oh, yeah, and I could do the, Wouldn’t it be nice if there were smoking hot man covers coming out of Aphrodisia, but !hola! have you seen the winter lineup? My poor laptop screen will never be the same for all the recent tongue-worship of those hard-bodied male specimens. :)
This “Wouldn’t it be nice” pertains to the fact that authors don’t always get to write or do those things they want to do. Personally, I have a couple of series that I would love to finish and that I know, from various emails, readers would love to see me finish as well. The thing is, I can’t finish those series for the time being. Writing for multiple publishers means agreeing to certain contract terms that generally take away your rights to do the same length and genre of work for another publisher. Really, you can’t blame a publisher for not wanting to invest their time and money in you only to have you turn around and go elsewhere. But at the same time, it can be disappointing for the authors as much as the readers.
Then, too, is the reality of the author who changes genres. Why, when an author is so amazing at writing contemporaries or historicals, do they suddenly plunge into paranormals? Well, because that is just what the marketplace is buying. As authors, if we don’t produce books that sell--even if the genre might not be our top pick--we won’t have a very longlasting career.
So what can be done about this realities, other than saying, Wouldn’t it be nice if I could finish off those two series and write the historical I have been angsting to write since finishing my last one several years ago?
For the first item, not much can be done, outside of writing free stories to continue on those two series. Unfortuantely, very few authors have time to write an entire free full-length story, let alone several. So what about a short story? If an author is unable to continue a series in full length per contract obligations, would you as a reader be content with seeing a free short story or stories to tie up lose ends and see remaining characters happy together? Or would you prefer to wait it out, until the author can legally finish the series?
As for the second item, an author’s ability to write in a genre that the general marketplace might not be so strong on. That all depends on the readers. Obviously an author who is selling well in a genre is going to be able to continue to produce in that genre despite the rest of the industry. However, those sales need to be direct, which means bought as a new item instead of a resale. The reality with erotic romance is when it comes to paperbacks, they are almost always released in trade format. This means mucho $$$. I sure can’t afford many books when they are going for $10-15 each. What about you? Do you read erotic romance in trade format regardless of the pricetag? Would you be apt to read more if they cost less?
Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot to be done for the price issue either, outside of having the books release in massmarket format as opposed to trade. Definitely not an overnight thing, but once again it is something that readers control. The book industry is dependent almost completely on the reader, and so what the bulk of the readers want, the bulk of the readers ultimately get. What this means to you is do express yourself.
Every publisher has a way for readers to contact them, generally by a customer service email. Share your thoughts and feedback. One reader won’t make magic happen, but as with anything else, if enough share the same opinion, it will eventually make a difference. And maybe, eventually, I can even afford to buy all those hunks over there on the left-hand side of this blog. Okay, so not the hunks, but at least the books they are on. :)
Posted by Jodi Lynn Copeland ::
11:31 AM ::