Last week I mentioned that social media was changing for writers and I realized that I've now been doing this long enough to see several changes in the industry. Let's take a look:
- When I started writing, ebooks were just emerging as major competition. There was a lot of controversy over whether paper books would survive. I think we all know now that ebooks are in fact a big deal and that it's a GOOD thing. That ebooks have made reading easier and "cooler" for many so that reaching new readers is possible. It also saves trees! I still have stacks of paper books everywhere you look, but I LOVE/ADORE/ENJOY my Kindle Paperwhite.
- Who would win the ebook wars? Kindle? Nook? Kobe? Would Amazon destroy traditional publishing? We see that there are still issues and there's still debate, but I think we can safely say that for now traditional publishing is still alive and Amazon (and others) grow as well. it's a win win in my glass-half-full eyes. More books! More books! How can that ever be bad?
- When I started (am I dating myself?) about half the time I still had to go to the post office with manilla envelopes and SASEs. If you don't know what that stands for, congratulations! Email is soooo much easier and I believe most editors and agents agree.
- I guess this is obvious. I mean trends change, right? That's why they're TRENDS. ;D I've seen vampires become taboo, and expect that before long they will make a reappearance. Dystopians, etc. It's been interesting to see. Does it change what I write? Yes and no. I don't write to trends. I write what I love. BUT I stay aware of what's out there. It's important.
- Social Interaction
- Yes, I already spoke about social media. But I want to point out again how lonely writing used to be! SCBWI and other great organizations have given us opportunities to be with others in our "tribe" for years. But I for one think it's AMAZING how many friends I've made online. Real friends. And the extent to which I connect with people on a day to day basis. Which brings me to...
- I believe we've gotten better as a group. I think all the availability of information at our fingertips has opened a world of learning, practice, and craft to us as writers that didn't exist before. Between informational blogposts and critiquing, etc. the quality of what I've seen (and I imagine agents and editors) has risen. There have always been fabulous writers. But now there are just that many more out there. Again - not a bad thing! MORE BOOKS!! Of good quality.
What about you? What have you seen change since you started? And what's next?