Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Authors Feel Pinch in Age of E-Books - "When literary agent Sarah Yake shopped around Kirsten Kaschock's debut novel 'Sleight' this year, she thought it would be a shoo-in with New York's top publishers.

'Her project was one of the most exemplary in the last decade or so,' said Jed Rasula, who has taught in the English department at the University of Georgia since 2001. 'I certainly thought she'd find a New York publisher.'

But the major New York publishers passed on 'Sleight,' a novel about two sisters trained in a fictional art form. Coffee House Press in Minneapolis, a small independent publisher, now plans to publish the book, offering Ms. Kaschock an advance of about $3,500—a small fraction of the typical advances once paid by the major publishing houses.

The digital revolution is not only disrupting the traditional publishing model, but new and aspiring literary writers as well, who are less likely to gain attention from publishers or command the advances they once might have. WSJ's Jeffrey Trachtenberg discusses on digits.

It has always been tough for literary fiction writers to get their work published by the top publishing houses. But the digital revolution that is disrupting the economic model of the book industry is having an outsize impact on the careers of literary writers."

Link via Dwight Silverman's TechBlog.


Anonymous said...

It's kind of sad that this article disses Coffee House Press. It's an excellent small publisher and I think it's still expanding. It's a place for prestigious, serious writing. I'm sorry that she didn't get the big advance but a lot of great books start off small.

Dan Luft

Anonymous said...

And it's a debut novel!! What does she want -- high hopes she may not be able to regain??

Dan again

Todd Mason said...

And it's more than Dorchester was routinely paying.

Richard R. said...

do I even have to say it? e-publishing is a bane to writers, readers.