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November 2013
A Message from Kristin Nelson

Because Readers Can't Possibly Know What's Good for Them…

Kristin Nelson

Last week I sat on a panel at the CONTEC conference in Frankfurt. One panelist resurrected an old argument I haven’t heard in a while–that in the Wild West of self-publishing, the important role of curation by professionals has gone missing.

As if agents and editors have the sole right to be the arbitrators of taste and the decision-makers about what gets published.

If you are feeling riled, you have a right to.

What that assumes about readers and the general public is dangerous. Readers are not stupid. They can decide for themselves what’s worthy of their time to read. Do I admit that a lot of self-published material out there could use a good dose of editing and proofing? Of course. But if the readers don’t care, should we? Does the growing body of self-published work really diminish the literary canon? Should the industry keep important voices from being heard just because those authors can’t get a publisher’s attention or support? I’m assuming that is the argument, as some beloved writers of today may not have been discovered had it not been for a publisher who believed in and supported that author for years before they achieved good sales and general discovery.

But I don’t think self publishing interferes with the ability of the publishers to still do the same.

In short, I abhor literary snobbery and the assumption that the collective “we” of publishing knows best about what consumers ought to read versus what they want to read.

Besides, like Angry Birds, that was so yesterday. Candy Crush is what rules now.

Pub Rants University

The Nitty-Gritty: How Digital Is Transforming the Publishing Landscape -2013-11-13

Wednesday, November 13 at 6:00-7:30 PM MT

Every writing conference offers how-to workshops on digital self-publishing. But rare is the workshop that gets down to nitty-gritty details of how digital publishing is, from an agent’s perspective, transforming the industry.

Agent Kristin will explain how the publishing business is changing and how this impacts writers at every stage of their careers. She’ll also review contract terms that may restrict traditionally published authors from self publishing.

Key Topics:

  • Should an author digitally publish?
  • What are the pros and cons?
  • Can an author who is traditionally published, digitally self-publish?
  • What are the potential contract hurdles?
  • Can an author partner with an agent to digitally publish?
  • How is the agent role changing as the industry changes?
  • What is metadata and why is it your friend?


  • Kristin will be on video as well as audio.
  • Attendees are encouraged to ask questions during the presentation.
  • Attendees will have access to the recorded video of the presentation for six months.

Who should attend?

  • Writers who are serious about writing as a career
  • Writers who want to be publishing biz and agent savvy
  • Writers who like to be more informed about the scope of how digital is transforming the industry
Register Now

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