Discover more from Eva's Newsletter for Writers
I did a thing.
(Did you notice this email looks different? I'll tell you why...)
I still want to write books, don’t you?
First of all, thanks to everyone who responded with thoughts about Elle Griffin’s post and my email about it (Should We Even Be Writing Books At All?) A few of you brought up a good point: there’s probably not a big overlap between the people who want to read a gothic novel and the people who read Elle’s email newsletters (which are often about the business and technical side of publishing… and then there was her deep-dive into NFTs, which is not exactly a subject for the gothic novel crowd).
Maybe, one reader suggested, Elle needs to market her novel better, which sounded insane to me first (she’s got over 4,000 Substack subscribers! She’s obviously a marketing genius!), but I think it’s a valid point.
This got me thinking about my own email list. Are the people reading my newsletters the same people who will buy my YA novels when they are (finally) published? Maybe I need to think about how to seek out my future readers.
Of course, teenagers only stay teenagers for so long, and the publishing industry is slow. Maybe I need to reach out to the people who get books into teenagers hands: librarians, booksellers, parents, book-loving great-aunts. And other writers. Like you guys.
I did a thing.
I am not a technologically-savvy person. I grew up in the eighties and nineties, when we still used the card catalog at the library. I was listening to a walkman up until 2004, and I didn’t get my first smart phone until I was in my thirties. I get scared by new technology, and once I know how to use something I don’t like switching to something else.
But. I’m almost at 2,000 subscribers, and that’s when MailChimp (the email marketing service I’ve been using since 2017) starts to charge a fee. So I looked into it, and turns out Substack (the very service Elle Griffin uses), is free, no matter how how large my audience gets. I can continue to send out free newsletters to my heart’s content.
And, if I ever wanted to, I could offer a paid version of my newsletter. I’m not going to do that right now, and I’m always going to offer a free newsletter, but it has gotten me thinking… do I have content that is worth money? I’ve been writing seriously, and learning about writing/publishing, for close to fifteen years now. I have my MFA, I’ve worked with a literary agent, I’ve published short stories, I’ve taught writing classes and workshops. Perhaps I do have valuable information to share.
Just something for me to think about. For now.
If you’re looking for a critique partner or beta readers, #MomsWritersClub has a #cpmatch thread on Twitter right now to help you connect with someone. I’m not sure if you need to be a mom to participate… Probably not?
The RevPit2022 Annual Contest submission window opens on March 17, but there are #MeetTheEditor events happening before then, starting on Februay 28. If you have a full manuscript, you can win feedback and edits from professional editors to help get your book ready for querying.
Querying kidlit agents (PB through YA)? Want to look up what an agent has sold but don’t want to pay for a subscription to Publishers Marketplace? I hear you. So does writer Ann Zhao. She has offered this sneaky-genius work-around. (I don’t know why, but for some reason this doesn’t work for adult book deals.)
Staring down a big revision? Jessica Brody, author of the book Save the Cat! Writes a Novel (which I highly recommend) has a 4-part (free) revision workshop on youtube. I haven’t watched it yet, but it was recommended to me by a friend.
I am currently reading Sally Rooney’s newest novel, Beautiful World, Where Are You? and I have THOUGHTS. Have you read it? I’m not going to recommend it until I finish it (and finish parsing through my thoughts about it), but I definitely recommend her novel Normal People (and the Netflix series… oh my gosh, so emotional, so beautiful, so melancholy.)
That’s all for now everyone. Let me know what you think about my new email look. And, as always, I’d love to hear about what you’re reading or writing.