March 5th, 2013

Still learning

The Vancouver Public Library hosted a panel last night on the topic of "Getting Started in Children's Books" and I actually managed to get over my anxiety long enough to attend! There was an illustrator there, along with a good mix of fiction and non-fiction, middle grade and YA writers, including one who shared her experience with independently publishing a second edition of her out-of-print book. Each panelist spoke briefly about her work and how she got started in the industry, and then they started taking questions from the audience.

I've done a fair amount of research on my own, so much of the information presented was not new to me, but I did appreciate the personal accounts of working with editors and agents. I was interested to learn that most canadian publishers are more willing than their US counterparts to accept manuscripts directly from authors without going through an agent. It was good to meet some local people with similar interests to mine, and —if you'll permit me a moment of blatant self-praise— rather gratifying to see that I can create a professional looking product, and that the design work I've done for mikaspace and EDST is really not bad. Thank you, J, for training me to be picky!

What is somewhat less encouraging, is that I'm becoming increasingly convinced that I will have to find a way to outsource marketing/sales/promotional tasks if I'm to continue as an illustrator. I'm searching for a more stable source of income while I try to develop my portfolio and put together a new promotional mailer, and I hope that some day I'll be able to afford it :P

Crossposted from Dreamwidth. Comments are welcome either here or there.