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Chronicle Books

editing_for_authors
Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

Pookiestoop

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Hi. On the advice of a friend who knows people at Chronicle Books I sent a table book proposal. They have since declined. I thought, "okay, they don't go on the 'it's who you know' tip. Good for them."

I am now interested in sending a query and proposal for a non-fiction book I am writing for a friend. The thing is I have no idea how Chronicle Books operates. I was told on a couple of occasions that, "Chronicle doesn't pay authors good money." Does that matter and if so? I mean, if a person is starting out shouldn’t they go where they can? :) Thanks

 

Aconite

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Pookiestoop, don't sell yourself short because you're a new writer. You should try for the best deal you can possibly get, and that includes--but is not limited to--the money. Plenty of new writers go with publishers that pay nice advances; why shouldn't you be one of them? Always start at the top of your list and work down; don't start low just because you're new.

If you were starting out and looking for a job, would you limit yourself to applying to low-paying companies because you're new? I'd hope not! You'd go for the best money and overall offer you could get, surely. Do the same with publishers.
 

Lauri B

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Pookiestoop said:
Hi. On the advice of a friend who knows people at Chronicle Books I sent a table book proposal. They have since declined. I thought, "okay, they don't go on the 'it's who you know' tip. Good for them."

I am now interested in sending a query and proposal for a non-fiction book I am writing for a friend. The thing is I have no idea how Chronicle Books operates. I was told on a couple of occasions that, "Chronicle doesn't pay authors good money." Does that matter and if so? I mean, if a person is starting out shouldn’t they go where they can? :) Thanks
Hi there,
I've worked with Chronicle and the money was fine. They were easy to work with and I enjoyed my experience.
 

Storyteller5

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Thanks for checking in on this, Nomad. Chronicle is one of the publishers I've been looking at. :)
 

smallthunder

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Kudos to Kate Prouty at Chronicle

Hello, everyone --

Not that anybody has asked about Chronicle Books for a while (judging by this thread), but I'd thought it would be nice to recognize Kate Prouty's professionalism ...

I mailed Chronicle Books (along with a score of other publishers) my non-fiction book proposal on 12/11 -- not expecting to hear from any of them for a long time, especially considering the holidays.

So, I was very impressed to hear back from Kate Prouty at Chronicle Books on 12/27 (by e-mail, as I had requested) -- so quickly!

Alas, there was no offer to pick up my project -- but she explained why (several other books by Chronicle on similar topics have had only "modest" success), and even told me that she thought my take on the topic was "a neat idea."

Wow. Fast and courteous.:LilLove:

I e-mailed her back to thank her for her speedy response, and wished her a happy new year. She e-mailed me back to wish me & my project success in 2007.

Very nice.

Oh, and no -- no one else has responded, either way, yet. Not even those folks I contacted in October.
 
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Old Hack

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When I was a non-fiction editor at a packaging house, some years ago, I worked with Chronicle on a few projects. They were fabulous to work with: exacting, demanding, prompt and courteous. They obviously cared a lot about the books that they published, and it showed. I'd go to them in an instant if I had an appropriate package.
 

PeeDee

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If they published Urban Fantasy (or, really, genre) then I think I might submit to them. They're pretty.

You know. After I submit to Eos... :)
 

ColoradoGuy

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I, too, was astonished to read this today. I think in the past various publishers (and agents) have sold names to vanity presses for them to solicit rejected authors with junk mail, but what is so amazing to me is how upfront and brazen they are about this. It's like they're mining their slushpile for money.
 

veinglory

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I am also less than thrilled at this so called journalist vomiting up a finely spun press release and pretending it is news. Do you think E Lynne Harris is voluntarily involved in this mess? I hope a few people take the time to rate this "story" (at the bottom of the page)
 

jamiehall

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Chronicle Books has announced it will begin a new "mutual referral" program with POD publisher Blurb where Chronicle will receive "an undisclosed cut of the earnings generated" from rejected authors.
To read the original article on Newsweek, go to:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20895716/site/newsweek/?nav=slate?from=rss

Ick! It looks like more mainstream publishers are getting into seriously questionable ethics (this coming after Simon & Schuster's rights grab).
 

Soccer Mom

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Kudos, Victoria for jumping on this and Double High Kudos to SouthernWriter for catching this!

This is very upsetting.
 

Bubastes

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Oh my goodness, that is just wrong. But how many would-be authors will be able to see the apparent conflict of interest?
 

James D. Macdonald

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Yo, authors!

Cut out the middle man. You can find a vanity press on your own for free.

Or, if you're going to self-publish then genuinely self-publish.

This plan isn't any part in your career path. It's great for them ... not so good for you.
 

LeslieB

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The thing that disturbs me the most is the number of writers who are going to think that if Chronicle is sending them info on a vanity publisher, they've been broomed to the curb and have no chance at *any* commercial publisher. I know that if I didn't read boards like this, my reaction would be to be crushed that Chronicle thought my submission was that bad.
 

Popeyesays

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I just sent an e-mail to Chronicle Books saying I will not buy anymore of their books until their policy changes. All by myself it's nothing, but if some others were to do the same?

Regards,
Scott
 

jamiehall

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The thing that disturbs me the most is the number of writers who are going to think that if Chronicle is sending them info on a vanity publisher, they've been broomed to the curb and have no chance at *any* commercial publisher. I know that if I didn't read boards like this, my reaction would be to be crushed that Chronicle thought my submission was that bad.

Basically, there are going to be three harmful lines of thought that will be caused by this:

1) A legitimate publisher has referred me to this other service. Of course this other service must be good!

2) OMG a legitimate publisher thinks I'm so bad that my only hope is a vanity press. Maybe my writing is total crap and I should just give up right now!

3) Maybe this is Chronicle's way of telling me that my work might be good enough but they want to test it first. Let's shell out the cash and see if I can pass the test!

All of these concepts are quite damaging to authors, especially #3 since it is probably a tease (though occasionally a new author might be selected that way, just to keep the wheels greased by more hopefuls).
 

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