Paddling Your Own Waka - Same Same But Different writers festival

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[00:00:00] This recording is brought to you by the same same but different Writers Festival in pride [00:00:08] So Welcome to this session peddling your own Walker, a survey of the landscape where global publishing companies no longer have the same power as gatekeepers that they once had. And the Internet has opened up new ways of writers reaching their audiences. So our panel today will explore the possibilities and problems of finding your own audience. So just to tell you about the format of the session, I've asked all the panelists to talk with their responses to the topic. We're going to run through that in reverse alphabetical order because he wanted to go first. And then I'll facilitate a discussion with the panel and then we'll we will allow time for questions and responses and things from the audience at the end. But just to introduce our panel, Carol Bo, if you haven't worked out by now, you must be you must know that she sells books. She's the owner of the women's bookshop in Ponsonby, which is celebrating its 27th birthday and April that right she reviews book as well on Radio New Zealand and in print media. And she helps readers and writers connect through her involvement with festivals like this one and and also to Vermont and others. Today, she'll be giving a perspective on what it's like to be a thriving independent bookseller. And on blog next to her as a child advocate, project manager, communications consultant and publisher is successfully published hardback books including for someone I love, a collection of writing by his life mother pay the Haneda blank, beautiful book that is out on the table out there in the book salary, and also an anthropologist and is founded the Nautilus regional order Louie [00:01:34] CRISPR ko [00:01:36] next to me is a sociologist, historian and author of books including the award winning mates and lovers history of Ghana, New Zealand, also out there on the table. He set up his own press genre books, which he runs with his partner, and then Eden and this is published mainly of fictions the photographs of Robert Gant, which was referenced in that first book that I mentioned to by 2 million peers, which was 2013 the following year, suddenly, dialogues and pictures in 2014. And then I was intrigued to see on the National Library Catalog that that's been followed by the leaders warehouse precinct 2014, so it will be good to hear more about that and your publishing strategy. Joanne Drayton next to Chris is an acclaimed blogger for his written about to crime writers. We heard about an effect testing session this morning, no mash that came out in 2008. And and period in 2012. But I was also known who work through her writing about the artist writer hazard and Edith Kalia, two terrific books as well that came before that, and Francis Hodgkins, as well. And today, she's talking about thinking digital, which is really, [00:02:35] really [00:02:36] incredibly intrigued. And then Ian was, as a former publisher, read Harper Collins, and XR in what has published both fiction and nonfiction in the United Kingdom and New Zealand. And he first published paywalls, his collection of short stories, dangerous desires, which is still still available, and what he he made his novel nights in the gardens of Spain, which we were talking about earlier today. And I think he's the dedicated T, if that's the right word, and the base mates Anthology, which I spoke about last night. So join me in welcoming this panel of experts brains trust this this afternoon. [00:03:14] And over to you. [00:03:19] Right, so I thought I would just give you a little bit of a background of the context for publishing today. A lot of the session will be devoted to digital publishing and internet publishing and the new forms of publishing. But I wanted to tell you a little bit about traditional publishing and what's happened to us and where it is, actually, now. Last month, there was a US study released that revealed what most people would suspect that people employed in the publishing industry, large audience five straight, no surprise there, the figure is actually 88% some of the other figures on the survey might interest you 78% of those employed in publishing are women, only 22% of men 79% of white or Caucasian 92% have no disability. For my own knowledge of New Zealand publishers, I think those figures would be pretty much the same here. The industry does employ a large number of women and as in society at large I'm sure most people are sexual. But I don't think figures like this need to turn you from peddling your own Walker into the mainstream to see what happens if that's your inclination, is everyone knows the publishing industry in New Zealand has changed hugely in the 21st century due to the internet and all the ebooks and alternative entertainment Sutter around. But the changes don't necessarily mean that all the avenues to traditional publishing have been blocked. They've been huge changes and retail books book shops have closed who remembers borders and DMX with calls has changed its focus disappeared from Watkins main shopping street. major publishers disappear they've been merged or swallowed up read a proud Kiwi company where I used to work as bought up by Penguin years ago and since then, penguin has itself merged into Random House other local publishers like 10 long acre and hot summer because no longer exist in their own right. There are some independents that still remain David Bateman exile our press Craig possum, still soldier on the university presses continue, in fact, a new University Press open just six months ago, messy University Prince and a new person Russia called upstart press has been very successful since it launched a couple of years ago, and actually published Allison Moore's book, which we heard this morning. So self belief of these new publishers and starting up is perhaps reflected in local book sales. That might surprise you to know that in 2015 5.3 million books were sold in New Zealand, which was a growth in volume of 7.1% over the previous year, so book sales are actually increasing, and the value of those sales also increased by 2.1%. Sales of ebook readers and of ebooks themselves plateaued a couple of years ago, and sales of readers have definitely in decline, as people increasingly take to their phones and tablets to read books. Some reports suggests that ebook sales may be declining slightly. According to the US that the UK bookseller magazine just last week, the five largest UK publishers all reported declining ebook sales in 2015. However, this may be slightly misleading, partly because sales of self published and independently published ebooks are growing and account for an increasing share of the market. So we've got people peddling their own Walker quite successfully away from those major publishers. So what are the options now, I'll leave my colleagues on the panel to talk about some self publishing online publishing. There are maybe a much larger number of options and opportunities available to writers now. If all you want to do is to get your work out there to be read by others won't necessarily bring you an income, but you will have a voice out there. If you are approaching traditional publishers, what are they looking for? [00:08:06] I think there are there are three main things first, most importantly, what publishers have always wanted, and that is originality, writing ability, good ideas, you have to be able to demonstrate not just competence, but excellence. They want writers who bring new ideas, or at least a new take on an old idea or writer with a fresh, interesting voice who can really communicate in an interesting way. Secondly, and I think this is the major change in the 21st century, publishers want authors who are prepared to help sell the book, and preferably one who is digitally connected. So it's a huge advantage if you can use social media confidently, an author with thousands of Facebook friends or an active Twitter account as a godsend to publishers these days. They also really love authors who can engage people who are able to talk in public promote their book positively in the media. Such authors will be invited to literary festivals and conferences, and so on. And so important publishers that authors can effectively sell their books at events like these. And publishers always looking for something extra. So if you have another interest or a connection with a pastime, or an organization, which apparently has no bearing on your being an author, they might want to use that, for example, if you've written a novel, but you're also a leading light in the saunter on the deaf community, or triathlon or whatever, these are all opportunities to publishers these days, by widen the scope of your potential market, because you've already got connections there. And they are more important now than they ever were in the past. I think come to that those those connections between your throne publisher enable a more of a spirit of cooperation for between author and publisher these days, I think the days of the sort of the authoritarian publisher telling the author what to do and gone. My last decade and publishing has been much more cooperative in the sense that there is a necessity for people to work together. And the third thing that publishers are looking for is of course a subject area which which I can see good sales. And as far as nonfiction is concerned areas that are as strong as ever for traditional publishers are things like cookery books, photographic books, books, anything that relies on strong visual content. The other major area is children's books, not just picture books, but teen young adult fiction to one of the features and publishing in recent years has been the growth of young adult fiction and since Harry Potter and scenario not confined to teens, so adults are now reading young adult books and very large numbers. Talking about subject areas. I thought I might just finish up by telling you the top five best sellers in New Zealand and 2015 excluding adult coloring books. By the way, I did look up gay adult coloring books surprise what I found on the internet the other day [00:11:34] the top five books last year in New Zealand number one, Dan passes biography number two make me by Lee child. Number three grey by El James that 50 shades thing right go away. Number four homemade happiness by Chelsea winter. And number five, Wimpy Kid old school sports photography, block buster novel titillating s&m trash fiction, [00:12:05] celebrity cookbook, [00:12:10] social media, [00:12:13] through social media. [00:12:17] And of course, when picking a new book and an established children's series. So that's where we are in New Zealand now that's what's selling. Thank you. [00:12:31] Thank you. Are you a digitally connected writer? [00:12:37] connected I'm not sure digitally this. [00:12:40] I kind of feel a little bit of a gatecrasher here in this party. Because I'm not exactly sure how I just thought it was such an interesting idea. And in view of this changes in the publishing industry in New Zealand, I thought the in a way our community, this community has always really been up against the odds. And the odds have shifted even more dramatically against the writer I think. And and if we look at the losses in publishing, in 2015, and 2014, we talking about as far as I know, these facts are correct. Pearson Education gone. [00:13:30] Harper Collins gone. [00:13:33] Yeah, but but there's sort of what the traditional ones have gone. And she New Zealand gone in the in the old since school journal publisher, Learning Media gone. Random House and Penguin, now a random penguin. So, so merged, so. So I think, if it hasn't gone, it's been changed, and it's altered. And so every publishing world is very different. And what's happened with, with all those losses is that all the people involved in those organizations lost the job, that we have people, the editors, [00:14:17] and the whole [00:14:20] production moved offshore. So we now have New Zealand books being edited by Australians. And I don't know whether you feel upset about that, I wouldn't have said I was in front of Ellison mail this morning. But it's it's in other words, without the actual local knowledge and the commitment, that local knowledge that we we bring to our editing in the process of creating a book in New Zealand, so our world has changed. Our world was always we were always up against it. But I say today that all authors, all writers sending the work or trying to see the work out into an environment, which is challenged, and difficult. And I've got a couple of quotes here, which I which I would which I did not my words, but Jeff Walker said, we are actually starting to get fairly close to the wall. If you're a New Zealand fiction writer, and you've been turned down by Penguin Random, and you don't live in Wellington, so you probably won't get published by Victoria University previous. And you're not not a Molly. So you won't be published by here, then goodness gracious, where are you going to go? So I mean, this is, I mean, let's be honest and upfront about it, you know, it's really difficult to get something published today. And I would always say that the mainstream is, because of his connections and audience, as always, I think the probably the first port of call, but I think there are other options in a, they are. And he's he's a comment actually. On mail as well. So I'm looking at Donald writing, it's hard to avoid the conclusion that fewer key writers will end up in print. And we say I slip a self published text on Amazon and embark on the difficult task of self. Actually, she's, she's got speaking. So I think it's like, you know, kind of show put shoving your hopes out there and kind of self promoting so but you know, that I think the positives are that New Zealand Kiwis, very keen to read their own stories. And we have a unique experience here in New Zealand, it is valuable, and in there, is there as a remarkably big audience keen to see and listen to those stories. So would you believe in 2011, a quarter of the books sold here in New Zealand, were created in New Zealand. So that's, that's remarkable, really. And so I think that the, some of the options, certainly to, to actually produce your, your own books to either produce your own your own individual books, or actually as a collective, and this is what I'm thinking would be something that I might look at later on. When I've got a little bit more time, my life is actually to create some, an ebook publishing company. Or we're, we're, in fact, you've got a board, and you've got users, and you've got the kind of facilities that a normal publisher, you know, had, one of our sort of traditional publisher would have to offer that [00:17:55] audience market, but also the expertise and the scope. And in fact, that's what we have in abundance at the moment, because there are so many editors and people at the who are looking for work, because they they, frankly, the mainstream publishers are not here in the way that they were. So there's lots of opportunities. I think I must point out because I've written about two writers. Recently, there's my last two books. So I like to finish with, with with the fact that so I think one of our options, certainly is ebook and certainly actually ebook publishing companies, they actually do much that the mainstream does, but doesn't hit it huge Ovi commitment. So that so those are, those are the options that I'm certainly going to look at is, you know, in the future, and for some of the titles that I don't think will grip a mainstream publisher. And, but one of the things, I think, is that the relationship between publishers and authors has changed anyway. And, and I after writing that night, Nina MM Piri. That was great, heartfelt enthusiasm when they hit successes, they were contacted, it was constant communication leaders. And I just want to begin at the beginning of last year, I arrived back in New Zealand, and I went to my heat races. And, and I was, I had a job that year, because I lost my job the year before. And we were all made redundant. And I had a job. So I thought, well, I'm going to go back to my old hairdresser. And she said to me, she shouted across the room, congratulations, you're on the New York Times bestseller list. And I don't want to cross into do. And so I thought I thought this person is really mean. And as I said, You got to be kidding. And so I said, Well, I will master surely I must have heard from it from my you know, like my agent or my publisher. Now, I heard it from my hairdresser. And she was actually right, so so so in fact, in fact, even in mainstream string publishing, you are much more of a commodity, the notion of developing a career sticking with an author of taking them through the various stages of life in publishing is kind of a bit of an old story now. So you do need to be saving you do need to be as a self promotion, and you kind of do need to look at new options, and they do it in a way that they've never been before with the expertise there as well. So I'm gonna stop there and and pass over. [00:20:40] Chris, who actually wrote a nice a New Zealand books and 2011 called bookmaking, where he sort of explained this concept of the second sector and publishing and this is an audio visual, visual, multi visual presentation was a week video. I think the company says [00:21:00] the audio is me talking. The virtual is the video which citizen [00:21:05] Oh, it's just warming up. Okay, and can we just pop it on the pauses to start with? I just wanted to mention a couple of things. Firstly, to mention Carol who has stopped box in Ian who has helped me with that book. So I'd like to thank them both. I think in a sense, my little journey started off when Ian counseled me on what to do about a body of material that really interesting photographs of Robert Gant that I couldn't interest interest a publisher and and so he helped me out and he edited and my friend Katie yet Mr. design, and that was our first kind of book that we've ended up under the genre books and print and and as Paul mentioned, they've been civil sense. What I want to do today, though, as a brief, fairly brief, I think this last four minutes, I want to talk about the second book, which is two by two men and peers, there are about three copies remaining in the world sale. One is on necktie black, Theo and the other two and my bag. And this was conceived as a little Thank you, for those who've been so helpful and wonderful with with helping us get many fictions out the means of selling it as well. But the thing that I really like about this way book, it is to South Island language way it's about that kind of debt kind of big, was that fuses in a sense, the new ideas of sort of do it yourself publishing with some very, very old technologies. And so this was a book that was printed underneath and it was bound and donated by David Steedman of juicy bounder. bookbinder, just around the corner from speed print with the book was printed. And then about two years later, I went up to pump le a house with my partner, Jeffrey, who has been involved in genre books as well as the business manager, and saw the making books in 1840 style and are actually not a lot of change. So Stop babbling and start. So this is just the way we video that I'll just talk you through this as an image from the book coming off what's essentially a high definition photocopier, so reasonably newest technology. Books folded up here. And this is the week that David didn't has. Here he is here, and his Craftsman studio and donating a very old book sewing machine. So basically print, fold the signatures, and then it's going to be sewn on this machine here, which he should have kept the sound on it makes us marvelous clicking noise as he basically folds a folded page over that bit, I don't know a bit, but it's called into that, but I don't know what that is, but and then the needles come down and you see the cotton sewing the signatures together. That's the coolest was done by hand, it pump alien mission. If you can, at the end of the tour, you'll see this is the in the intermediate kind of technology fairly hands on nice an old fashioned, not too old fashioned. And then what you get as a great big stack of signatures like this, which you're going to be packed at that point if you diagonal threes. And you will then say that David is the in assembling them and the guillotine, pressing down to sort of squash them so you don't end up with a really, really fit book. And then after a while rather sort of violent thing happens which I'll let you see the violent thing with your own eyes. before that happens, the glue machine has to glue them. So I took my kind of video into his into his workshop and took these kind of images. Basically, once it's glued together, you see the spine is now kind of glued. And the trend. The book, as I mentioned is tiny. And so each those long things as actually two books which have been cut in half, which is what we're going to see next. So he's kind of lining this up, you'll notice there's no cover the cover is the next bit of the process. [00:25:15] Protecting the book blog and down we go on to it in the in [00:25:23] a sort of a pregnant pause before a rather slightly concerning thing happens. [00:25:34] And you think oh my god that squashed it. [00:25:37] What's it going to do now. [00:25:40] So again, cutting trimming versus the trimming kind of stage. going on here the end of part of the book flock, we've been hit a cover made in wrapped around it. I'll just mention as I as I'm going through in either the TX for us for this toe. I mean MN care results, copies. And so basically what we're doing here, the cover boards as they called literally with a thinner piece in the middle in the back room wrapped around them his away sticker and we made a think about 150 copies 140 copies of fairly small run in in the cover, lettering was hand stamped using old fashioned movable type. So really some kind of coal, all the technologies This is the the priests through which the type is imposed. This is the way image on the front cover and have shown mode. So you can see the book blocked in papers, the covers all sitting there waiting to be glued to give it and there will be put in a press pause. [00:26:54] And the end product of the book, The can stand [00:26:57] the term on the front [00:26:59] versus bad picture I showed you cut in and so sometimes the cover the front literally he played the game made up and the movable type on the spine. So soul through bookshops and in the internet, but using a really old kind of technology. And as someone who's done a lot of history, I really like the idea of the old and the new kind of coming together. And what was a fee craft based kind of project. downsides of this, the retail cost is quite high, because the cost of hand binding is reasonably expensive to copy. The cost of printing small runs can be high, although not so much if you're not using color. The later books were paperback perfect or burst binding, and they were much cheaper to produce, the whole thing has been huge amount of fun, really, for someone who's essentially quite so I like me, it's actually been quite hard, because you've really got to, as Joe said spruce up your kind of work and get out there and set yourself up and go buy my book and, and if you're a bit of a kind of a, you know, shy person, then you end up with this kind of weird feeling of kind of selling stuff at people the whole time. So it's really fascinating thing to do. Kind of disturbing in a way, but also really kind of rewarding, [00:28:27] all leaving the fit for FIFO. [00:28:41] Um, it's been quite an interesting time for me over the last couple of days reflecting on [00:28:49] sort of particularly beginning with last night where we heard about people's experiences, I mean, no talking about the books that kind of turned on the light. But basically what we got an overview of was kind of people's coming out stories, and I really felt like my story was told through many of many of the people who were here. So I won't go too much into my history of my sexuality. But what I realized is that my motivation as a writer, and as a publisher, really emerges out of what happened to me and during my childhood. And there were two issues that really bamboozled me and the first was my sexuality. And I mean, people talked about the moment when they realized that I mean, I feel like for me for my first conscious moment, I knew that there was something different about me. And it was something that I actually felt very guilty about and and made me feel very disconnected from the world. So that was the first issue and a lot of the chicks, which people talked about last night, a boy's own story by Edmund white, Quentin, Chris, naked civil servant, those were the first tix where I actually felt like I saw something even close to my experience reflected back at me. But the other issue that was really confusing for me was the issue of my cultural identity because I have a mixed cultural heritage. My father emigrated to New Zealand from Switzerland and the 1950s. And my mother is an entrepreneur is from these customer North Island. So I had this quite unusual cultural mix. And they were both equally unusual because they're very artistic. So my dad was a photographer. When he first arrived here, and my mother was fist, my Russia Twitter cattlemen spilled water on one of our first bilingual poets, and is actually very, very significant in terms of our literary history, even though she's not as not as famous as some of the writers who followed her. So that was what I was brought up and and [00:30:59] I was kind of secreted away in this very creative [00:31:04] home. And my first five years were spent in Palo Alto and North Northland where mom and dad taught at the local high school. And we were known as the packer kids, because we, all the other children, spoke Marie and had to marry parents, I didn't have to do and I had, was fired. You know, this was Tyler. And my parents were also liberals. So they, they wouldn't let us go to religious instructions for the rest of the children. And we went off to the headmaster's house to have lunch with him and his wife, and would in a very strong Catholic community. So there are always things that kind of set me apart. And certainly, in terms of figuring out who I was. Then in terms of my cultural identity, and my sexuality, those were very difficult issues for me to negotiate as, [00:32:01] as I transitioned into adulthood. And [00:32:06] my, I'm going to read, this was [00:32:12] the first edition of my mother's writing, which I've published. And this is a photograph of here, which my father took and used to hang in our kitchen. And so does, you know, he was photographing here nude in the in the 1950s, which gives you an idea of what type of people they both were. So quite forward thinking, and I think everyone card. And this was the first cover on the book, and I'll explain why we've changed the cover as I progress on my story. But I'd like to read a little bit from an insight that she wrote in 1959, and one attachments folder with a special word because CSI was too short. But that was so impressive. I gave you the special award. IN she's talking about her life back on the east coast. North of [00:33:07] Gisborne. [00:33:09] As long as he the Murray is conscious of his kinship ties, the MRT will never become as truly individualistic as the pack. To me this more than more than the retention of the language is what constitutes marriage honor. And it will, in my opinion, be the only permanent trait that distinguishes him from the package. The essay won the prize for the best short article and the Catherine Mansfield Memorial competition 1959 and cemented our Peters position and the emerging Murray literary canon. She was first and foremost to poetry short stories and insights, however, give a detailed sense of time and place for the prose, the love poetry for peels, as central as everything else emerged out of that space. So she was predicting that you know that that what she said was the length the language will decline. But the sense of a longer term, her family will always set us apart. And interestingly enough, she was she was bilingual. And for the last 15 years of your career, torch was heard of Maria walk on girls grammar, but you never pass that on to us as children. And so, and it was interesting listening for me to listen to Whitney this morning talking about taking a taking a minute MRT, which I really thought for 90% of my life is irrelevant to my functioning. And because I wasn't brought up with it, when I have to engage with it, I find it very, it's very policing, of behavior. That's primary function, and not being brought up with it. And I realized this around religion, and around Tichenor, that, because I had a childhood that was absent of those two things, that I feel that my mind is very afraid. And as a Murray Russia, I don't have many boundaries, about what i what i can write, and how I can express myself because I wasn't brought up with those things. And I must say, as an adult, I feel very, very grateful that those things were absent as a child, because I think what my parents gave me was a free mind. So trying to make sense of my child, my identity on those two levels are very confusing. I went to university as as an adult student, and studied English, and I was really, I was very, very drawn to post modernism. And because to me, that made sense of, of who I was, and the things that I liked about it was this sort of notion that there is no truth, because all of us have a different version of the truth. So and that, that as globalization increases, that the importance of individual cultures will decline. And we will become part of this kind of shared international culture, I was very attracted to that because it made sense of my mixed heritage and how I felt about myself and the different components of that all fitted together. So out of that, I then studied a lot of Murray literature University, and what really frustrated me was, I couldn't see myself in these stories. And if you look at, you know, mighty films, for example, you know, there's one for warriors, there's the whale rider, the the fable, there's also, again, back to the warrior and history. So I didn't see my contemporary reality, reflected back at me. So that being motivated me to write and later on to publish, and that's how I got to being a publisher. So the first thing I did was, [00:37:30] I decided, Okay, we need a mighty blend for and what my beef at that time was, you know, to me, Murray literature is absent of almost any middle class experience. So I wanted to start a journal to see, actually, you know, what is out there. And I've since published two issues, both of which I don't have any copies left. So I couldn't bring them to show you but this and the second issue was a combination of Maori and Aboriginal writers. And I'll just read you a paragraph from the introduction, which says the indigenous identities are in a state of flux, as I respond to a raft of global economic, social, and environmental influences, as a vehicle of cultural survival and change. literature is the space with these evolutions, and most clearly and focus. This collection celebrates identities of the indigenous peoples of the entities, and gives us a sense of how Maori and Aboriginal define themselves. And this moment, and what I think is happening in terms of writing and publishing, is that I think that over time, we will see and what we're witnessing is the disappearance of other because what we have with, with the domination of publishing, dissipating from these big publishing houses, we have many, many more voices. So we have a multiplicity of voices. And I believe over time that this notion of other will disappear, because we will all be that, and I guess my mission as a publisher, is to move myself from the periphery, and to the center. And particularly in my writing, my goal is, is towards the heterosexual, and, for example, and so I write, as if I'm in the center looking at them. And that was very much my mission as a writer, as editor, and publisher. And where I think that we are heading is from a post colonial space into a diversity space, where we all have a voice, and certainly, that's my mission and publishing. So which brings me back to my mother's collection of writing. And this is the second cover, which we went to, and what I found with the nude on the front cover, which I, I love that image of my mother, I was brought up with it. But what I found was when I gave the book to people, I could see that it created discomfort. And where I got to was, I thought well, I can go on my own artistic trip. But if I'm not going to be able to kind of bring bring people on the journey, then that becomes a block. So I, this was the second cover, again, my parents in need. But you can bet you, I mean, this is as much as you see. And in the end, I was a really interesting journey, which happened over about 18 months. But actually, this is a really a much better reflection of what's inside the book, which is lots of love poetry. And, and about the sentence, a passionate relationship between a Swiss man enters Murray lover, and alongside that I perish. My my sister is also a Polish and this is who Baka, and to create some resonance between the two. We've just got this kind of little connection here. So I'm very also, you know, I'm very sad, I'm very fussy about aesthetic. This took 18 months to kind of realize itself, and I know that if I'd been negotiating met with a publisher publisher, not myself, that it would have been I mean, it would have been impossible to get this product. So being I think being a self publisher, what it does is it gives me the freedom to have a voice and and also frame it in my own way. And I find that really, really liberating. And yeah, I think that's probably enough. But [00:42:10] yes, anyway, thank you very much. Carol. [00:42:22] I'm going to be brief because I felt we need a bit of time for discussion times getting on. I love peddling my own Walker. And that is one of the reasons that the women's bookshop is successful and thriving, is because I love what I do. My job is my hobby is my passion is my life's work. And so I love it. And small, good independent bookshops who know what they're doing and do it well are all thriving. We're not just surviving we're thriving, and an Oakland I would name unity books in High Street timeout and mount Eden and the women's bookshop in Dominica, we used to be in Ponsonby road. We are those three shops in particular, are all thriving and doing really well. The Christmas before last we said this is the best Christmas ever. The one that's just happened topped it. And I mean, I joke now be going almost 27 years. And this Christmas, I actually had money left over in the bank to pay the now huge Penguin Random House bill because all your books come from penguin and Random House and Alan on one in one loss. So your deliveries are huge. And the bill is huge. I had enough money left in the bank for the January payment. And that's the first time ever and I say only took me 27 years to do it. over those 27 years, cash flow has often been a nightmare. You get to the end of the month and you haven't got enough money to pay the publishers and and many of them have been extremely patient. But we offer I believe the reason we survive and why borders didn't NY witnesses has retrenched and why the big chains are disappearing is that what we can do in small independent bookshops is offer a service that no one else can offer, including the internet. We can we read my staff already life is taken on a new staff member. She's 19 she couldn't read much to the university exams finished and she has been churning through the books. In the few weeks that she's been there, she can now speak to customers about the books and she listens to what we say. And if she hasn't read it just I know I heard Carol telling someone blah, blah, blah, she's bright, she's smart. So even our 19 year old can talk to the customers about the books we give them, we recommend them people ring me up from Wellington and say I'm coming to open for Christmas, I need a book from my uncle a book from my below my list me seven books, I pick the box, I gift wrap them, she arrives from Wellington picks up her bag of box gift threat and every time we've got it right, so we're offering a service that cannot be offered by anybody else. So that's the first key thing. The other, I'm not going to be a bit negative, I'm sorry, because there's this idea out there that everybody's got a book in them. And I'm sorry, the terrible reality is that many people out there thinks they want to walk in them, but they haven't. And we have this nightmare of people coming into the bookshop with self published books. And you take one look, and we look at each other. And what we've actually done is we've to take the load off me because people come in and say, I've been told to come and talk to Carol. So I now have a staff member, you know, that self published people, we've developed a contract, because people have no idea what they're doing at all. And so we have to go through we go through it with them. And they have if we decide we're going to stop there, but they have to sign a comment trick that says things like this is what it will cost. And if they don't sell, you will have to take them back. And you know, we will keep them in the shop. And we'll let you know when we come to stop take time a year later that none of your books have sold and you need to come and collect them. And if you don't collect them, after three months, we're going to have to put them in the rubbish bin. So come and collect them, please, we have to actually spell that out for people because they have no idea that I run bring up after a week and say, This is what needs to happen. Have any of my books sold yet? Can you pay me. [00:46:30] And this is the ones that are actually good enough to be accepted. So many of them that come in our crap, I'm sorry, let's be blunt. Their covers are appalling. They have not been edited. They need him to edit them. They need you with your specifics to look at the layout and the design. And one of the great dangers of the internet is there are no gatekeepers. Anybody can publish any credit for like on the internet, and a huge percentage over is absolute crap. And that's I'm sorry, but that's the terrible negative reality we have to face up to it. So that I agree with Joe, there is a there is a problem for the really good writers who, you know, the the market and New Zealand's retrenched were a very small population. And for the good people, it is harder, I still believe if it's good enough to get it published. But if you're going to publish it yourself, employing one of these editors who is out of work, there are people out there with great skills who can help you learn how to learn about distribution, I mean, people coming in that they have a fam bringing my book to you would you sell it there no understanding that someone needs to distribute it to book shops around the country, they have no idea about promotion and marketing. And there are publicists out there, who from publishing companies, a lot of of self employed published publicists who set up their own little companies who will help you promote and market that book. But there's a whole writing the book is just one part of it. And even when it's good, that's just one part of it. It has to be sold and distributed and has to be marketed. Okay. And people have no idea about that, can I tell you the key thing, if any of you are thinking of, of publishing a book, you have to put on Nielsen Dr. It's a free service, I can give you her email, if you don't know what it is, you just email the email her the woman whose name I forget it at Nielsen, who receives all the information. It's a free service, she will give you a list of what you have to give her a cover image, a brief blurb about the book, all the details about it, it goes up on Nielsen book data online. And there is the resource that all English speaking booksellers, the world over us to find fault. So if you publish a book, and it's not on Nielsen, a customer comes in and says Harry blogs publish this book called so and so. And I look it up and it's more Nielsen doesn't exist. As far as a bookseller is concerned, the book does not exist, because there is no way we can find it. So the most key thing, and it's, it's the top thing on our list of things on the contract of things you must do, number one, listed on Nielsen book data online, it is absolutely crucial. So I'm sorry to be negative. But you know, if you're going to write something, give it to your friends and ask them to be honest. Because really, there was a lot of stuff out there that you know, it's just not good enough, sorry. But the good stuff is is going well, and people I do believe have gone back to real books, and I agree that we are selling and by the way, if you're going to get an E reader by Kobo nada, I have to do my political thing here by a Kobo not a Kindle. Kindle has become a this name like Electrolux means vacuum cleaner. Kindle means e reader. candles are evil, they are connected to Amazon. One of the many reasons that penguin and Random House have joined forces is that as a huge now, huge company, they are big enough to tell Amazon to F off is one of the reasons they've done it because Amazon demand these huge huge percentages off the books they buy. And you've got to be a really big publishing company to resist that. So Amazon is really evil. [00:50:36] And MX ex politically So, so nasty. I mean, they don't pay taxes, they actually bribe people to go into my bookshop, take a photograph of the of the back cover or the title page of the book with the barcode on the ice and and then order it from Amazon and they reward them for doing that. I mean, really evil business practices. The good thing about Cobos is that all the New Zealand libraries use Cobos. You can borrow books on your cover. You can actually use Kobo on your iPad or your phone or other devices. And you can do that just either going to our website and clicking on the Kobo button or going directly to cargo and load them onto your own devices. So please remember, use Cobos website rather than than Kindle and kindle amazon same thing. And remember the Book Depository is now owned by Amazon as well. So avoid them go if you can to a small independent bookshop. We are thriving. We do it well. And we welcome you. [00:51:45] Yep, killed a calculator panel. That was a fantastic overview of what's going on. Great to hear about the pushback from bookshops. But yes, I think read it's an interesting week because Amazon's to step into sharpen Seattle. Yeah, they're running a series of bookshops. So they're onto you. But what you said Carol reminded me of something that fun les McDonald, who I think said half a Collins and he said on media talk a with an R Brian. And he was talking and he said, the period we come at we're coming out of was actually an unusual period with the proliferation of publishing. And he said, what you're saying there actually were a lot of books that saw the light that probably shouldn't have. Because it's not that long ago that New Zealand writers had to be published in England, or Australia or America, you know, we are coming out of an old a bit of an odd period. So what's really encouraging and what everyone's been saying is that it's now possible to get these voices out there. There's a multiplicity of voices, it seems to me one of the thinking about the session, the big challenge is how do you connect with your audience? So Chris, tell us how I mean, what are your thoughts about how you have Self Publishers can connect with audiences, [00:52:55] I think he gave you all the answers probably easier to connect with van, a diverse audience, because you can target I mean, games, for instance, were fantastic Jackie Stanford, you know, we do stories on all of our books, they go on Facebook, they get linked through to that. So they're kind of electronic publicity within the queer community is actually easier to do, I think, because you can identify the community, when we sold many fictions, we developed a mailing list from the copies we sold directly, we could use that mailing list to sell the next set of books through. So I actually have a feeling I'm going to talk in the next session about my forthcoming teenagers book. I wouldn't like to market myself and I might tell you why then, but but the guy, the guy books are easier, because the nation is identifiable. And and you can actually get into it basically, [00:53:48] it wouldn't be required studies course on the planet, the looking at your books as part of the course lists. That would be nice. [00:53:56] Anton, what do you thoughts about promotion and reconnecting with audiences? [00:54:00] I think that with mom's book, for example, I mean, she had her own, you know, she had her own brand, with the weird things that have really helped them sell. And we've just gone on to the second print run just for Christmas. So the first one sold really quickly and really well. And that was because of her own notoriety. But I mean, you just, for me, I mean, my my background MPO, you can be mainstream media, you know, your interviews on radio, New Zealand, all that sort of thing. As soon as I did that, we would get spikes and sales, in terms of thinking about thing, it takes three anniversary with the, with the literary journals, for example, I would have thought that I would have thought a new journal of contemporary modern writing, and I'll be banging my door down. But I think that's really, really subjective. So I've just, I had boxes and boxes of the first issue Lyft over so I thought, I'm going to throw half of them away. And two weeks later, universal, we approach Mr. Assange can we have by a whole set? I mean, but that's taken four years. And that was really, because of who I knew that was a friend. He said, [00:55:09] yeah. And it just occurred to me that somebody works at the National Library to anyone who has published and the books are in New Zealand libraries, you should be registered for the public leaning right? Which registration closes for the next year. And first of March, if you don't know what I'm talking about, asked me afterwards, and was interested in your thoughts after having heard from this whole whole brains trust? And just one, I wanted your thoughts about one thing that occurred to me also, I'm thinking about this intellectual property protection, because it's all very well to sort of get you material out there. But is there a risk of you doing it yourself? And it doesn't go out with the sort of contractual protection that it might throw a publishing house? What are the risks there? And I think, you know, the list you read of those bestsellers is very solitary. But also, you know, what we were talking about last night, the fact that dangerous desires came out of a major publishing house, you know, publishers add an enormous amount of value. I mean, you know, I've had the experience of working with big houses and cynics. It's extraordinary. I know, the models are changing. But, you know, I always think it's important to acknowledge the value. And I mean, the one of the upsides in this conversation today is this idea that there's a whole raft of unemployed editors and designers and publicists out there waiting to help. Anyway, your thoughts in about what this have said today? [00:56:22] Well, as far as copyright protection is concerned, I think that's a difficulty for all kinds of creative producers. And I think without a publishing house behind you, it's difficult to keep control of nothing like that. I simply say to people, when they do their material out there to ensure that, you know, it has got a copyright sign on it at least, and to make sure that it is registered in [00:56:52] an official way. [00:56:58] One coming on audience. Sorry, Joe. Audience top five is at the top one was H, the Dan Carter bio was actually published by upstart press which has been mentioned today and other and that is a little a little publishing house. But it was it's been seen up by Kevin jetlag, who used to be the managing director of her shit, which we've also mentioned as being gone. Kevin syrup is like he used to do brilliant rugby and sports books with his shed. He's now doing it under upstart. But he also published Greg McGee's novel, which is what's it called um, Antipodeans, which is a long listed for the in the fiction section of the of the author now called Auckland, New Zealand Book Awards. And so there is a tiny publisher doing really well, doing good stuff, and museum is sorry, [00:57:46] I was just going to say that I actually think that the real future is with independent publishers, publishing companies in bookstores, I really do believe that because I think it does represent much a much more diverse voice, because I think that the big, big, blockbuster, huge corporations deal and blockbuster themes, ideas. So it's a it is one of the things that I found really interesting, I visited hapa cons in London, in the new car news building. And I would talk to one of the one of the big bosses there. And he did say that net now, mainstream big publishers go through all the self published books, and look at sales in an approach the office. So it's so so it's quite an interesting thing. So if you, I didn't realize that in NEC, lots of people are putting the books on, you know, and selling them that way, in the big publishers are going through looking at the sales and going yet will will, will publish it in the shades of shape. [00:58:57] It was one of those self published, you know, and really, really badly done. [00:59:03] But the thing is that, you know, I think I'm I would always go mainstream if my cane about the independent and smaller things, I think you're looking much more attractive, much more, they've got that kind of ability to run, and move fast in be intelligent, and thoughtful in and actually put some integrity into it, which I think, you know, just doesn't happen with the those those huge corporations, which are just about that's just about money. And you know, I mean, as a writer, you everybody knows, you can you don't write for the money, that's if you did, you would do something else, I would sell my body beater. I think for more money that almost to science, perhaps but you know, for more money, then then I could, you know, my I'm making even in your talks. But you know, the thing is that there are lots of options. And I think what you have to do is if you got something that you think is great, maybe you will find a publisher, and if you haven't, if you still think it's great, and you've run it past your friends, and then you've got some experience to look at the design and look at the what the editing and use and you've got a good product, it's got a chance at the because there is people looking for those sort of sales. And there is an audience here. I mean, it's amazing to see all the people that have come to today, you know, I'm not, you know, not that much. You know, marketing really, I mean, who can afford to do that. But there's a huge we are we are hungry readers, and New Zealand, New Zealand hungry for New Zealand stories. So I think there's a song as they heavens, [01:00:37] a great 19. And we're out of time. I'm sorry, I'm sorry, there was a time for questions. But you know, the best way to ask these guys questions is to buy the books and have a chat at the table out here with LB very soon. They're very diverse. You'll see it's a mixed picture in this brave new world. But I think the thing that links these guys together as this incredible passion for the work that they do, and I guess that's the little one of the listeners. That's what gets you there in the interview. Got that passion and that and the belief in what you're doing in your writing, then you will get there and also take notice of what they've seen all of these people that are out there to help realize that that passion and that dream So join me in thanking this fabulous brains trust panel this afternoon.

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