Saturday 28 March 2015

When we call for submissions

It can be quite exciting, watching the submissions coming in. We at Bridge House tend not to look at them until the submission period is over. We don’t want to start making decisions until we have the whole range.

However it’s disappointing when it’s clear that some people have just not read the guidelines. We’ve had several novels submitted. Nowhere on our site does it say we’re interested in novels. We have only ever published one novel and have decided that we prefer our anthologies of short stories.  Not that there is anything wrong with Laura Wilkinson’s Bloodmining. In fact, we’re rather proud of it. Our sister impring, The Red Telephone, publishes ya novels. But Bridge House's strength is definitely the short story. So, we’ve rejected these novels outright.  

We’ve also said that we don’t want children’s stories this time round. We’ve been sent a few.  I’ve actually not rejected these straight away. Some might be all right. They might fit in with our “snowflakes” theme. 

Thursday 5 March 2015

A love of books

Do publishers ever make millions? I actually suspect not, though one must envy Bloomsbury the Harry Potter books. Or should we? Bloomsbury now has something to live up to. They have had to expand. Can they keep up with that expansion? They seem to be doing well but is this a case of having to do well?
Certainly most publishers who have offices in London have to have a very commercial attitude to the book they publish. Will this book sell enough to cover the overheads? Even here, though, there is a love of books involved. Editors proudly keep copies of books they have worked on on their shelves, near their desks. Most involved in the industry work long hours but it doesn’t matter because they love their work. I’m pretty convinced that if they put the amount of business energy into almost any other sort of enterprise they’d make a lot more money.
The small presses have a little more freedom, fewer overheads and make little money at all. They are careful with their money and work in such a way that they don’t go under. Well most of them don’t.  A few do.  The people who work for them love books and thus spend their time doing what they enjoy. Of course they should be paid fairly for what they do and as long as they are, they’re not bothered about not making millions.
I work with texts all the time, yet many a time I’ve gone clothes shopping and come back with even more books. They’ve made me very happy.