Articles

Andrew Lownie uses his expert knowledge in the publishing field to maximise the potential of his clients and build up their careers. Here Andrew Lownie, and some of his clients and guest columnists, share advice on a variety of topics to writers. Elsewhere on the site you can find a Frequently Asked Questions list on literary agents, as well as advice for submitting work to agents.

  • Marketing Authors for the Long Haul

    08 Jan 2008

    Long-term marketing -- and turning authors into recognisable brands -- beats two-week, hit-or-miss promo blasts by publishers hands down, argues crime author Jimmy Lee Shreeve (www.jimmyleeshreeve.com). There's currently a heated debate going on about the marketing of books. Advertising experts say book publishers are poor at promotion and should look at turning their authors into brands like any other product in the marketplace. Currently, publishers tend to do a big publicity and promotional blast on publication, which might last all of two weeks. And then leave it at that; the book will...Read more

  • The Branding Debate

    05 Jan 2008

    Laurence Gardner contributes his thoughts to the Branding Debate. The original 'It's the Brand Stupid' article makes the point that “Publishers rightly contend that their marketing is hamstrung by a 21st century industry structured around retailers not writers”. Personally, I do not believe that the industry should be structured around either; it should rightly be structured around the customer requirements of book-buyers and readers. Authors with track records, supportive fan bases and operative websites are in constant ground-level contact with their existing readers and ot...Read more

  • How Brands Hatch

    03 Jan 2008

    Christopher Lloyd argues for greater long term investment in authors by publishers and more imaginative and varied marketing initiatives. Publishing Houses have a problem with their marketing. At least that’s the distinct impression given by a discussion raging on freelance arts journalist Danuta Kean’s website: “I don’t think most publishers understand the importance of marketing,” writes one correspondent, “It’s like having a bus driven by blind people and wondering why this bus fails to pick up passengers, all the while marvelling at the fact t...Read more

  • It’s a Biscuit, It’s a Bike – But It’s Seldom Just a Book

    01 Jan 2008

    Neil Glass argues every book needs to be published differently. Every time I’ve had a book published, I’ve found the experience of dealing with publishers deeply frustrating. I’m quite sure that publishers felt exactly the same way about working with me. One explanation could be that I am an extremely unpleasant and uncooperative person. I would prefer to believe a simplistic prejudice that the problems stem from the fact that many commissioning editors, desk editors, PR and production people are middle-class university graduates who view their jobs as almost part-time c...Read more

  • Where Hollywood Tries to Meet History

    03 Dec 2007

    Susan Ronald, the author of The Pirate Queen – Queen Elizabeth I, Her Pirate Adventurers & The Dawn of Empire, reflects on the recent relationship between film and history. When I was seven years old, I was browbeaten into becoming a child model in one of my mum’s charity fashion shows in Los Angeles, where Hollywood greats like Janet Leigh and Jayne Mansfield were the main attraction. While we were backstage at the dress rehearsal, I overheard Janet Leigh say to my mum (who was admiring her latest movie script) that, ‘History has nothing to do with Hollywood. Hollyw...Read more

  • In Defence of Misery Memoirs

    25 Nov 2007

    Foster carer Cathy Glass, whose misery memoir Damaged was a no 1 in hardback and paperback and whose second memoir Hidden has just been published, responds to critics of ‘mis mems’ showing how they highlight terrible stories and can galvanise a public response. Drunken mothers, bestial fathers, paedophilia and incest. They're the titillating popcorn of publishing today. So began an article in the Daily Mail (9/10/07) by Danuta Kean; titled The Pornography of Misery Memoir. It was a furious attack on inspirational memoirs and I read it on the same day that The Bookseller had a...Read more