Monday, July 11, 2005

Smooch Goodbye

As many of you have probably already heard Dorchester is shutting down its Smooch Young Adult line as of April of 2006. That means that while my first Smooch (Sk8er Boy) will still be released in October, my second contracted one (The Camelot Code) will not. Very sad as I was looking forward to writing that book. :( However, rights do revert back to me so perhaps we can find someone else interested in it. Hope so, anyway! The good thing is that none of the book is actually written (just a synopsis) so it's not a ton of wasted work in either case. But I love the story and would like to tell it all the same.

I would like to mention that the lovely people at Dorchester have been EXTREMELY supportive through this transitionary time. They could have said, "Well Smooch is dead, sucks to be you, give us back the advance and have a nice life." But instead they suggested I write them another Love Spell (adult) book instead, which I've agreed to do. I believe this new book will be the 3rd (and final) book in the Connecticut Fashionista series, which is something I'd hoped to do anyway. So that's cool. And it's nice to have a publisher that is supportive and believes in you.

So while that's all fine and good, what is worrying me now is the YA market in general. Smooch was one of the first of the new American YA lines out of the box and if they experienced slow sales, what does that mean for the other companies with YA lines? How are they doing? Should I still pursue writing for the YA market? Or should I turn elsewhere? And if so, where? What's the next big thing? (I guess if I knew that I could become a very rich agent or something...)

You know, I've often thought it would be cool to be a full time writer. To make a career out of telling stories. But perhaps that's just a pipe dream. Perhaps with shrinking sales and thus advances, I'll never make enough writing books to support myself. But you know what? That's actually okay with me. I love writing. And even if I don't make tons of cash, I like having books out in the bookstores with my name on them. Getting letters from readers who loved my story and can't wait for the next one. And I enjoy crafting the books themselves. Telling stories and sharing them with others. That may just possibly be reward enough.

Anyway - ramble, ramble, ramble. I could go on all day about this subject. But I'd much rather hear your comments. On life, the universe and the future of the fiction market.



Elizabeth Kerri Mahon said...

Marianne, sorry to hear about the end of the Smooch line. I was really looking forward to reading your Camelot book, and hopefully you'll be able to place it elsewhere. I know that Simon & Schuster has a great YA line, as well as Little, Brown. Good luck!

Courtney said...

I'm sorry about your Camelot book- that sucks.

Question- I thought once you had been paid an advance that the publisher couldn't ask for it back. Is that not true?

cin said...

I'm quite surprised- and sad for your story! That's horrible. :-(

My understanding was that the YA market was hot- but most of the YA books I'm seeing are edgy and SMOOCH seemed less, so.