For many, the best part of self-publishing is the ability to create something unique. This is certainly true of the anonymous authors of Iterating Grace, a satirical story of a Silicon Valley programmer who goes on a spiritual journey. The small 18 page book includes tech industry in-jokes and references and includes handwritten versions of tweets. The book was sent to a handful of people in the tech industry, resulting in interest from Farrar, Strass & Giroux’s paperback imprint, FSG Originals.
Sean McDonald, the book’s editor at FSG noted, “We kept talking about how obviously it was impossible to publish this kind of thing at a major publishing house…”. Another reason indie rules.
Pirelli’s annual self-published calendar is known for tantalizing, usually nude pinup-style photographs of supermodels and movie stars of the female persuasion. Mostly shot by renowned photographers, the calenders are given away to an exclusive group of 20,000 “V.I.P.’s, musicians, politicians and royalty,” according to a company spokesman. This year, via photographer Annie Leibovitz (whose photos are pictured above) the company went in a different direction, with the focus on the subjects résumés, not their measurements.
Pirelli chairman Marco Tronchetti Provera says this new direction is just another example of how their calendar “reflects contemporary society,” meaning this might not be a permanent change in the calendar’s style. But many of the women involved in the calendar, including one of the models, blogger-actress Tavi Gevinson, hope that they stay on this path.
Literary Agents + Indie Authors
Being represented by a literary agent is generally considered to be a luxury available only to traditionally published authors. But Jessica Faust, a literary agent at BookEnds, found that representation by an agent can be useful even to authors who choose to self-publish.
Faust started her independent agency Beyond the Page Publishing in 2011 when she realized the importance of self-publishing to authors. “I wanted to make sure I had something to offer those clients who might be interested in diving into that world, but didn’t want to do it on their own,” she says in an interview with Sangeeta Mehta on Jane Friedman’s blog. Beyond the Page offers in-depth editing, formatting, conversion, uploading to all sales sites, help with marketing, copyright filing, and more. Unlike a hybrid publisher, having an agent such as Faust could help with guiding a writer when making serious career decisions. Additionally, agents can help with contractual issues with publishers for those who’ve been published before.
Having an agent isn’t necessary for self-publishing success, but according to Faust, it’s definitely worth considering. Read the full interview for more information.
Local Writers Share Their Work in NJ Reading Series
The literary reading series, Halfway There, launched in September at Montclair, NJ’s Red Eye Café with the intent to showcase the work of local artists and authors. The second event will take place on December 14th and will feature New Jersey writers Tobias Carroll, Claudia Cortese, Hillary Frank, and Naomi J. Williams. More info can be found here.
As always, Indie Reader’s list where indies count showcases the bestselling indie books of this week. It’s the only bestseller list where self-published books are the only ones that matter. Be sure to check out this week’s bestsellers!
Have a great weekend, Indie Readers!