What Are The Jobs In Publishing?

Exciting news this month, when a number of publishers pledged to raise their starting salaries from $40,000 to $45,000/year. In part, this commitment to paying a living wage is to help diversify the publishing workforce, as discussed in this Poets & Writers article.

At the same time, a number of efforts are being made to demystify the publishing process and discuss what types of jobs are done by editors, designers, and everyone else employed by a publisher. A couple of free panels are coming up that will be of particular interest to those wanting to write or publish in the science fiction and fantasy field.

April 16, 9pm PDT/12am EST

Flights of Foundry
What Are All The People Working On Your Book Doing
Crafted for writers, this panel will discuss a book’s journey from pitched to published, and who all the professionals working on a book along the way. Panelists are Jill Roberts, Managing Editor, Tachyon Publications; Laura Blackwell, Copyeditor; Mike Allen, Publisher, Mythic Delirium Books; and Rosemary Jones (moderator), Creative Consultant, Book Publishers Northwest News. All are also accomplished authors who have seen both sides of the publishing process. An international conference, Flights offers panels and workshops 24-hours a day, April 16 to 19. To register for this and other Flights events, see their website at flightsoffoundry.org.

May 6, 4pm PDT/7pm EST

Genre Publishing 101
Join a group of publishing professionals from Tor Nightfire Books to learn their path towards breaking into the industry and more about their day-to-day work. This panel will focus on answering questions about how to get started as an employee in the book industry. Free to register at crowdcast.

Humanities Montana Grants Available Now

Humanities Montana’s next deadline for regular grant applications is April 20, 2021.

The grants are designed to support the invaluable work being done by other cultural institutions, organizations, scholars, filmmakers, and leaders in Montana. The categories that qualify for grants of more than $1,000 include: book festivals; conferences; exhibits; lectures; media projects; museum assistance; oral histories; panel discussions; planning for humanities programs; public debates; reading and discussion programs; and workshops. The organization also has a category of “Other” to encourage innovation.

Besides regular grants, Humanities Montana offers opportunity grants award up to $1,000. Applications can be submitted any time, but at least four weeks prior to the supported project. Proposals should engage Montanans in meaningful discussion about the human condition, strengthen cooperative relationships among communities and cultural organizations, and enrich civic discourse among the state’s diverse cultures and across its geographical distances. Humanities Montana only awards opportunity grants to organizations, not individuals.

More information about all Humanities Montana’s grant programs can be found at their website: humanitiesmontana.org. Director of Programs and Grants Kim Anderson suggests contacting her for help in writing the strongest grant proposal possible. Call Humanities Montana’s office at (406) 243-6022 to discuss your proposal with her.

Lecture Series Explores Poetry

Charlie Wright, publisher of Seattle’s Wave Books, created the Bagley Wright Lecture Series on Poetry (BWLS) in memory of his late father, the businessman and philanthropist Bagley Wright.  The BWLS supports contemporary poets as they explore in-depth their own thinking on poetry and poetics, and give a series of lectures resulting from these investigations. 

Bagley Wright Lecture Series: Douglas Kearney
March 24
7:00–8:00 p.m. PDT

Douglas Kearney has long written about the conflation between violence and entertainment in U.S. American culture, from badman folklore to postcards of lynching. Yet, the question that may haunt any writer is, what are the ethics of representing violence? How do poetic aestheticizations of brutality transform, reinscribe, or abet flesh and blood violence? Through a series of vignettes in which Kearney entangles his encounters with violence in writing and his own attempts to put it down on the page, the poet investigates what compels him about the subject.

Kearney’s newest collection, Sho, will be published by Wave in 2021.

Register in advance here.

Cover detail, Sho, Wave Books 2021

Get On Write Track In Idaho

Since COVID shut down in-person events, Idaho Writers Group has hosted and publicized a variety of virtual events offered by groups and clubs. This community-based literary arts organization promotes education in the community by hosting public programs and projects, including author readings, workshops on a broad spectrum of topics, and writing contests.

The group is also planning their annual conference of interest to writers and readers of all genres. The next Idaho Writers Conference is scheduled for October 1-2, 2021, at the Boise Centre.

See the complete schedule of virtual events and links to register on the IWG website.

The next IWG virtual event will be SEO and Keywords for Authors with Troy Lambert.

SEO and Keywords for Authors
March 13, 11:30 AM
Troy Lambert

To rank well on Amazon, optimize ads, and even to rank well on Google, you need to understand SEO and keywords. What are they? Why do they matter? And how do you discover the right ones for your book? We’ll talk about that and more in this live discussion. For more information, see https://troylambertwrites.com/.

October 1-2, 2021

Submit to 2022 PNBA Book Awards

Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association’s Book Awards Committee is ready for submissions. Nine booksellers from independent bookstores throughout the Pacific Northwest will be reading for the 2022 Book Award. Books submitted must have be published between Oct 1, 2020 and Sep 30, 2021 and be by Northwest authors. To submit, send an email to:

In your email, include the AUTHOR, PLACE OF RESIDENCE, TITLE, PUBLISHER’S NAME, ADDRESS and LEAD CONTACT. An automated reply will give complete instructions and mailing addresses for the Book Award committee members.

Books must be submitted by September 30, 2021.  The Committee will select a short-list in November and PNBA member stores will promote these titles during the Christmas season. The winners will be announced in January 2022.  

PNBA organizers report that the awards committee receives over 400 submissions a year so the sooner they receive your book, the more chance it has of getting a full reading!  

Personal Consultations Available Through Pub U

Independent Book Publishing Association opened sign-ups for “Ask the Experts” at IBPA Publishing University 2021 today. Conference registration is required for these one-on-one consultations. Readers of Book Publishers Northwest News can use the affiliate 15% discount for April’s virtual IBPA Publishing University.

The full conference schedule is available at https://www.publishinguniversity.org/schedule.

Readers of Book Publishers Northwest News receive a 15% registration discount when they apply Promo Code PubU-Affiliates at check out. Additional registration information is available at https://www.publishinguniversity.org/register.

U.S. Selfies Applications Due March 1

In 2020, Publishers Weekly and BookLife created an award to recognize excellence in self-publishing. The current U.S. Selfies award is open to writers of Adult Fiction or Children’s/YA Fiction. The winning authors will receive $1,000 cash and a $5,000 package of advertising in Publishers Weekly, both in the print magazine and online.

The awards will be announced at the 2021 American Library Association’s Annual Conference.

Applications for these awards need to be made by March 1. For complete details, please see selfiesbookawards.com.

Submissions Sought For 2021 Portland Book Festival

While the organizers have still not decided whether the Portland Book Festival will be fully virtual or a return to a more “normal” format, submissions are now open for books to be included in the November 2021 event.

Literary Arts will accept submissions of books between now and June 4, 2021 for the 2021 Festival. Complete submissions must be received by June 4, 2021.To be considered, books must be published in the fifteen months preceding the Festival (November 2021); priority consideration will be given to books published in 2021.

Exact dates and format for the 2021 Portland Book Festival will be announced later. For more details on how to make a submission, see https://literary-arts.org/

APSS Offers Free Book Selling U

Brian Jud alerted us that he’s back to giving free advice on book selling “The APSS 2020 Book Selling University was such a huge success we thought we would do it again — with different topics and some new speakers,” he wrote tonight.

January 28 – 29
The Association of Publishers for Special Sales
Free, Virtual Book Selling University
Selling Books in a COVID World

The two-day virtual conference is presented at no charge. Nationally known speakers will help independent publishers and authors discover how to sell more books, obtain more and better publicity, get media appearances, build your personal brand and much more. New speakers and topics include: 

§  How to Get Media Attention When No One Knows Who the Hell You Are

§  A Panel Discussion About Getting More Publicity in Niche Markets

§  Don’t Count Them Out! Selling to Libraries Amidst the Continuing COVID Pandemic

§  How to Contact and Get a Reply from Any Prospective Buyer

§  Selling More Books During a Pandemic (retail, military, government, homeschooling, etc.)

§  Q & A workshop – How to Get Published Specifically for Special Sales

§  Seven Ways To Monetize Your Book

§  Copyrights, Trademarks and Avoiding Scams and Lawsuits

§  How to Create Your Personal Brand

For more information or to register for any or all courses go to: https://bit.ly/2NtFVVi 

Turning A Board Game Into A Novel

Seattle author Rosemary Jones not only edits this website, she’s also a regular writer of media tie-in or shared world fiction. Taking licensed properties and working with the holders of those licenses, she crafts fiction that deepens the mythos underlying such popular games as Dungeons & Dragons or, in her latest novel, Arkham Horror.

“Arkham Horror is a beloved line of board and card games published by Fantasy Flight Games,” said Jones. “Players become investigators in the strange New England town of Arkham, where cosmic horrors lurk behind seemingly innocent activities. Players of the games are used to intriguing artwork detailing the game’s setting in the 1920s America. As an author, it’s a fun challenge to not only write a story that belongs in that fantasy world but also fits into the real history of the time.”

For her first novel for Arkham Horror, Jones researched 1920s Hollywood and sent a troupe of filmmakers to Arkham to produce a silent movie. During the course of their production, the cast and crew not only meet characters from the game, they are also challenged to survive the dangers that lurk in the shadows.

Reviewers have already taken Mask of Silver‘s diverse cast of characters to heart, with one stating: “what you end up with is a depiction of 1920s America that never feels anything less than 100% real. This is absolutely crucial to this kind of insidious horror: rather than being able to dismiss this tale as something fantastical set in a place clearly of the imagination, instead you have something that feels like real history, a carefully restored picture of 1920s America – as such, when the creepy stuff starts to happen, you can almost start to wonder whether your mirror is reflecting things at an angle that should not be possible? whether the crows outside your window are giving you funny looks, as you get further and further into this slow-burn work of unsettling horror.”

To find out more about how to go from game to story, join Jones and Anjuli Smith of Aconyte Books as they discuss writing media tie-in fiction for Arkham Horror on January 22.

ACONYTE is the novels division of Asmodee Entertainment, created in 2019 to deliver on the Asmodee slogan: “Great games, amazing stories!” Their authors and editors strive to create new and exciting content to be leveraged on further entertainment platforms. A truly global brand, they work with companies around the world from their offices in Nottingham, UK.

Arkham Horror: Author Chat With Rosemary Jones

Friday January 22
4pm GMT /11am EST/8am PST

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