Saturday, August 1, 2009

Yes, We Have No Editors Today

I just came back from the ALA conference and I'm still as confused as ever as to who does what and who talks to who in the world of publishing. I assume that most of the publishing people I see at an event like that are marketing people, but I remember meeting an editor from a small (but quite well-known) children's press who, when learning I was a librarian, said "maybe I'll see you at ALA." To what extent, then, do editors wear different hats and might I see them pop up at these events sometimes? Also, where does an event like ALA rank on your radar screen as far as reaching possible buyers?
Certainly Marketing and Publicity are regular attendees at events like ALA and BEA. Those events are also lousy with editors and other publishing professionals. Both events rank high for us-- they are usually our best chances to connect with the librarian and bookseller communities.

Getting a chance to talk to committed booksellers and librarians--who are or may become movers and shakers in their respective areas-- is of tremendous help to editors, if we can manage a conversation amid the bustle.

Keep in mind that we are continually avoiding twits who think they'll submit a manuscript or pitch a project to us in person, regardless of our submission guidelines. So don't be surprised if editors don't have a badge on or "accidentally" have their badges flipped. If someone we don't know shows up and asks if there's 'an editor' in the booth, we will scan the booth carefully before lying our asses off.

17 comments:

celi.a said...

Ha! Good to know.

Deirdre Mundy said...

Well darn! There goes my plan of going from booth to booth and asking "Excuse me, is Editorial Anonymous here?" ;)

(Well, fine...honestly I'm not planning on going to BEA until 2012--but once it's in the midwest again, I am TOTALLY going. What a great way to build my "Must read as soon as it comes out" list!

Wendie O said...

That certainly explains why, when I stopped at the Little Brown booth at ALA several years ago just to tell Alvina Ling how much I loved her blogs, the staff there said she was off the floor. (even tho I was pretty sure the person in the corner was her.) No, I didn't leave a message. I was too embarrassed by their action. It had taken me a long time to get up enough courage to say this to her.

The photograph on my blog (which will probably also show with this message) was taken about 20 minutes later as I signed books with my illustrator at another publisher's booth. You can judge whether I looked like a stalker or not. -wo

Editorial Anonymous said...

Oh, that's too bad, Wendie. Wish I could introduce you to Alvina (but that would mean revealing my identity). She's a sweetie.

But for the record, the twits rarely look like stalkers. Next time, say: "Is Alvina around? I just wanted to tell her how much I enjoy her blog--and I promise I'm not going to pitch her anything!"

I am perennially grateful to the marketing and publicity staff for protecting me from random editor-seekers, because most of them are not at ALL like you!

Anonymous said...

Will I have more luck if I barge in waving a fat folder filled with pink paper and loudly announce that I have a lot of great story ideas including a tale about a kitten that my 5-year-old wrote, an alphabet book illustrated with the help of my parakeet, and a really uplifting novel full of good characters who help show children how they ought to behave (and is really much better for them than all that Harry Potter nonsense) and then watch closely to see who ducks fastest or flinches most violently?

Editorial Anonymous said...

Actually... the "flinches hardest" method might really work.

Hmm.

Deirdre Mundy said...

Hmm... I'd also assume that the editor is probably the biggest lit-nerd in the booth. So maybe if you just make clever literature jokes and see who laughs the loudest? Of course, you'd have to make sure your jokes were funny first......

Do the marketing people dress differently than editors?

See... there are all sorts of subtle social cues you could weigh... this would be a great game show---- Spot the Editor!

Ok, honestly, if I WAS wandering around BEA, I'd probably be more interested in ARCS and authors than editors.... no offense, EA. But on the other hand, the fan-lines for awesome authors are probably good places to meet editors......

Haste yee back ;-) said...

How to pick the Editor at BEA, ALA...

Simply hang a sign around you neck that's full of spleling and! gremmar errors... Their response is reflexive, easy as ---<0)))<
catchin' fish!

Haste yee back ;-)

Anonymous said...

EA said... "Oh, that's too bad, Wendie. Wish I could introduce you to Alvina (but that would mean revealing my identity). She's a sweetie..."


I'm not Wendie, but with this info, I think I know who you are. In fact, I think you rejected a manuscript of mine a year or so ago, which was agented by a "friend" of this site. Hmmm... Don't worry. I have no in-person writer friends, and no blog to try and lure readers with a big reveal.

My lips are sealed. I know who Miss Snark is too. I'll never tell that either.

PurpleClover said...

So now we all know to start with "I'm a librarian and was wondering if there is an editor in the booth?"

Thanks for the tip!


;) muwahahahahaha

Editorial Anonymous said...

Oh, I love guesses about my identity. Betcha you're wrong (but of course I can't admit it if you're right).

BuffySquirrel said...

People were always trying to tell me who Miss Snark is. Picture a sqrl with her paws over her ears going, La La La I don't want to know La La La.

Not as bad as the person who wanted to tell me--in detail--what Peter Sutcliffe did to his victims.

Anonymous said...

You think you know who EA is because she knows Alvina Ling? Are you kidding? Or is it that you think only one editor in the United States would refer to Alvina as a "sweetie"?

Editorial Anonymous said...

It is true that Alvina knows a lot of people.

literaticat said...

AND alvina is sweet. That is a known fact.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11:37 --

I think I know who EA is for a variety of other reasons, some of which come from things stated by my previous agent at my previous agency.

None of this will I share. Sorry to cause a mini uproar.

lynnekelly said...

To protect Buffy I won't say the name, but doesn't everyone know who Miss Snark is now?