By Porter Anderson | @Porter_Anderson
From January 26, 2012
Part of my series of columns on publishing, Writing on the Ether, appearing Thursdays through the kind (and brave) benevolence of Jane Friedman at JaneFriedman.com
“Ether” / Or?
Just as the round tables were rolled into the Metropolitan Ballroom for the pre-conference DBW Marketing Summit…
Just as the chillers cooled the low-pile carpeted pitch, slammed so bravely in those third-floor meeting halls…
Just as publishing industry stakeholders talked of achieving the “impactful discovery of niche markets through metadata”…
A small door at the back of the Sheraton New York Hotel and Towers … clicked shut again for another year.
Did you hear it? Shhh. Listen. Hear that? Nah.
No more than you could hear DBW’s Publishing Innovation Awards’ new QEDs announced over the din of Monday evening’s cocktail reception.
That author standing in darkness is Barry Eisler at WDC (Jan. 21, 2012) / Photo by Dan Blank
No more than you could read the big-screen displays of the good Jack McKeown’s Verso Advertising slides about book-buying behavior Wednesday.
No more than you could be sure that it was really Barry Eisler on Saturday as he spoke in the annual darkness of the Sheraton’s New York Ballroom place of honor. The speaker in the middle of that room gets less limelight than a Rockette shopping her memoir.
Gathering for the first plenary session of the 2012 Digital Book World Conference.
If you have a “wait — what?” sensation when I mention bookly events on Saturday and Sunday — or if you look at the well-lit stage (left) at the Digital Book World Conference + Expo and wonder if you’re in the same business — then your hearing is improving.
Wasn’t that the pitter-patter of writers leaving the building?
And they missed such a good panel of literary agents Tuesday, some handsome candor at the table. Here was Brian DeFiore mentioning that “indie” just isn’t the right term for a self-publishing writer. He’s right, it’s a euphemism. And Liza Dawson described her project with two existing clients — “we’re the guinea pigs” — to explore together the ins and outs of self-publication.
Then there was the take-no-prisoners sass of Ginger Clark saying that if an author insists on self-publishing a project, “Ultimately? The client is my boss. I get out of the way or I lose that client.”
Clark, who works with the Association of Authors’ Representatives as does DeFiore, got off another good point: “If my client self-publishes, I’m not the publisher. The author’s name is on that contract, not mine.” At a time when the arrival of the agent-publisher is worrying a lot of us, Clark’s clarification is right, and timely.
I’m sorry our writers didn’t hear this panel and many other sessions of DBW.