The Publishing Summer

Between vacation and three day weekends and the like, it’s been ages since I’ve dropped in to blog. I’m sure you all missed me terribly and are much relieved that I’m back in the rotation.

And since the Dystel vacation rotation is in full swing, I thought I’d take the chance to chat about one of my favorite publishing myths: nothing happens during the summer.  It’s all lies.

Let me just do a little boasting here for a second (I loooooove to flatter myself): I got back from vacation last Tuesday and since then have submitted three projects and closed two deals. I know, I know. I’m awesome. But this happened in the season when publishing is supposed to shut down so we can all jaunt off to our summer homes and sun by the pool.

Spoiler alert: most of us don’t have summer homes.

The reality of the situation is that things in summer may be quieter than other seasons because most people take their vacations at this time of year and as an industry we embrace the incredibly rewarding concept of summer hours, aka half-day Fridays. Again, this is presumably so we can get to our beach houses. In practice, when I leave early on Fridays, it’s to go home or go to a park and do reading. I told myself I was actually going to head home and nap last Friday, and I ended up getting through two manuscripts in a row.

In any case, the bottom line is that things slow down the slightest of bits in the summer, but people who aren’t on vacation are probably working just as hard as ever. I know there are authors who really panic about the timing of material going out and convince themselves that if they don’t have deals in place by the end of May, it’s going to be a slog to September, but as far as I can tell, nothing changes all that terribly much from season to season. Much as we might sometimes want it to.

5 Responses to The Publishing Summer

  1. Jennifer Schubert says:

    Big congratulations on the sales!

  2. Thanks for busting that myth Jim. I’ve been worrying about this very issue!

  3. Okay, Jim, let’s get real here. If you’re such a badass when it comes to closing the deal, why don’t you have a summer home? It’s almost as if you’re trying to say publishing isn’t a way to get rich quick. . . . Oh crap! Reality just hit me. I hate when that happens. Back to writing, where it’s safe.

  4. Kaitlyne says:

    Wait, are you saying that the entire industry isn’t expected to take three months off to party? But…I just put a down payment on my summer home and everything!

  5. Kerry Gans says:

    I have a summer home. It just happens to be the same as my winter home.

    Congrats on the sales, and I’m glad there are still people manning the desks in there!

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