Monthly Archives: February 2015

Display Natural Talant in Your Query Letter: 3 Tips

Sometimes people have a knack for writing their own query letter. Often they don’t.
It’s not because they can’t write well; it’s because the query is a sales tool and few authors, fiction or nonfiction, are trained in sales techniques.
Queries have a second obstacle built in: until an author is published, they often don’t know what the publishing industry expects them to include in the query or the book proposal. They don’t know the buzzwords, they aren’t sure how to position their work in the market, they don’t know what trends are current and what is fading rapidly away. The mistargeting of only one of these items is enough to make an agent or publisher stop reading and move on to the next query.
Practice is fine. Publishing industry savvy is much, much better.
Display natural talant by:
–Reading industry publications: Publisher’s Weekly, Writer’s Digest, etc.
–Read industry blogs: Huffington Post has several, and up-and-coming authors often blog about their experiences.
–Subscribe to industry newsletters. Publisher’s Weekly has a free e-newsletter, as does Writer’s Digest. There are tons of free e-newsletters out there. I sift through a few dozen every week.

Job at Baker Publishing

Baker Publishing Group, in Ada, is currently accepting applications for a full-time in-house editor in the trade department. The trade department produces books in a wide variety of categories, including fiction, youth, devotional, self-help, relationships, marriage, parenting, cultural critique, professional, spirituality, biblical studies, and apologetics. Responsibilities include editing or managing the editing of assigned titles, corresponding with authors, combining author and proofreader corrections, and reviewing cover and catalog copy.
A candidate should have a BA in English or other related majors, or equivalent work experience; three to five years of book-editing experience; knowledge of the Bible; a familiarity with Chicago Manual of Style, 16th ed.; excellent copyediting, grammar, and spelling skills; and proficiency in Microsoft Word. Personal characteristics should include an attention to detail, strong organizational skills, the ability to handle multiple tasks, and the ability to work well with others.
Click here for details and to apply.

Book Review: Seeing (Blindness #2) by Jose Saramago

I read this because I enjoyed Blindness so much. This one turned out to be a bit more political than I usually like. However, I enjoyed it quite a bit, in no small part because of the wry humor the author brought to the topic.
3 stars.

Job at Fortress Press

Fortress Popular is a new unit of Fortress Press. It targets the general consumer with books that are culturally engaged and grounded in fresh, substantive, accessible, and inspiring theological reflection.
The unit needs a marketing manager to build a strong brand and achieve financial goals.
-Work with the Vice President & Publisher in the development, positioning, messaging, and launch of the brand and its products.
-Lead marketing communications strategy, campaign planning, execution, monitoring, and analysis of the brand and its products.
-Guide the effective use of a range of marketing tactics/tool including print, e-mail, web, social media, SEO, etc. Ensure that team stays abreast of emerging marketing trends.
-Manage internal and external creative talent to deliver breakthrough work on time and on budget.
-Evaluate the effectiveness of marketing initiatives using a variety of data sources.
-Achieve annual quantitative goals (including sales, customer retention, market share, etc.) for assigned product lines.
-Participate in the annual budget and revenue forecasting process. Manage assigned portions of marketing department budget.
-Contribute to the evaluation of new project acquisitions, partnerships, and series development with development teams.
-Collaborate with internal customer-facing teams to effectively reach organizational goals.
Click here for details.

Book Review: Blindness by Jose Saramago

Fantastic story. Other people told me this is a book-length rant against consumerism, and I don’t care. I read it for how the characters interacted, how they faced the challenges before them. It ended pretty much where and how I expected…and that was not disappointing. It has a strong message beyond anything it might say about consumerism and provides a deeply satisfying read.
5 stars!