Yma’s Publishing Industry and Craft Questions
- Under what circumstances would an author only want to publish an e-book? What advantages and disadvantages does publishing only an e-book offer me as a writer? Do the advantages or disadvantages change depending on whether or not I am with a small press, large press, or self-published?
- One hears absolute horror stories about what can happen to authors who lose money or rights to their work due to contract clauses they do not understand. Is it always necessary to engage an attorney to review contracts when signing with a publisher or literary agency? What are some of the biggest and most common mistakes writers make when signing contracts?
- What constitutes a good rate for an agent selling books to publishers? Where do these numbers come from?
- I am very interested in the idea of setting not just as the location in which a story takes place, but as a character in and of itself. My work reflects the sensibilities and concerns of Gothic literature in Europe and American Southern Gothic, especially Cormac McCarthy’s work. This type of writing is very concerned with essential questions about the nature of evil, and setting is used as a mirror to reflect the characters’ tumultuous internal states. What are some techniques I might employ to make my settings really come alive? What techniques might be useful to unify settings and characters?
- I studied painting and dance this summer with the specific intention to bring craft lessons from those fields into my writing. The following are just a very few of the many things I learned. My acrylics class taught me to how to really see color. How to see the six or seven shades ranging from orange to brown in an orange, or the half-dozen shades of green in leaves. I learned to really appreciate minute shades of meaning in language and how they color the readers experience of the work. The skill of seeing also increased my ability to accurately describe. With ballet, I was taught that the same positions are used all over the world, and any dancer who has been taught the basics can take class in Russia, Japan, or Georgia and understand what’s going on. From this I learned the importance of canonical literature, and the depth offered by deliberately engaging a shared set of symbols. How have others used various artistic disciplines to defamiliarize and/or improve their writing processes?