"Content is one of the beautiful things about the internet" - Book editor Parul Bavishi on writing in a pandemic
Mean content is therapy content is yeah content is one of the beautiful things about the Internet. And it's obviously has. It's incredibly dark side. Where drawing intimations this propagated but what you have on the flip side. Is this ability to be close to two and be influenced by thinkers that can really change and shift your way of life into freons pokes. My Name's Chandrika. An OBE is free. His own about how the Internet has changed creativity. Episode is all about how books and publishing work in the Internet age. I spoke to pick at its power of itchy about writing getting started on a Burke Budi or that fun stuff from parole on how she got into her job. The white is our own about. And what's been helping her? Write three the pandemic. Hello my name is Carl for VICI. I am an editor at publishing uncovered and story grid. I am the CO founder of the London Vita Salon where we help writers right more often with more success. One of the things that would doing during lockdown which have loved to invite you to the part of the daily rightist our to every morning between eight and nine. Am Best Right together learn together. Can you summarize Ukraine today? Please I ended up doing an internship for what was then a very tiny publishable Is Publishing and I intend for the a t post doing anything Instead of my late twenty s because I I just want to do something that I actually wanted to wake up and do really fall enough with and I ended up getting a job land around that time. Christopher Michael Lajos who is a very very prestigious publisher he had bought this little known book called Girl With the Dragon Tattoo from the Swedish publisher. And it was around. The House is not doing this. Little competition with the time of you could get through the manuscripts foster foster sentenced to life. Time that I just was so new to me this loving my work loving every single day going to work. I remember going going in with a pile of manuscripts on my on. My lap before kindle came out and so I fell in love with publishing I worked quick We help set up a children's at but I think children's I didn't mean pitchers Not said Middle Grade. Young young adults some cross navy books as well and then I got poached by random. House publishes recruiter told me at the time that there were a lot of people who are interested in the job so I felt very very lucky. When you can publishing you always made to feel lucky even though you get paid peanuts because so many people wanna Joe but I really loved working at Random House. I got some really interesting. Title's Great Olefins bought. I started to get a little bit disillusioned by how slow the industry was. How things would move so slowly took another year out and I ended up off towards Literally Scout which is a fantastic role. By the way it's like being a publishing spy never even knew it existed when I was Netzer but as literally scout you scour the mock it in the U K on behalf of Foreign Publisheh so I had to read all the time. The children's books Everything that was being published anyone given point in time the by the time. The book has came along. I could tell you know random house. Germany or monetary today random past Spain. Which folks they had to concentrate on the should by See sort of a subterfuge like getting hold of manuscripts on the fly reading them digesting them assessing them. I was awesome fun how I got to where I am now. Which is that. I mean editors life essentially worked for numbers sparring writers. I worked for some published writers who want some extra support. Now do things that Ba. London writers on is that I left for little bit to to work in the Startup Rod. But he knew what books stream back. I just couldn't be without editing. It's just it's just how I'm wired. I just lounge breeding whole manuscripts or working with an author on a whole concept in helping them hammered harm. It's it's hard work but I love it and so after the startup world I ended up working myself setting up a very school Editorial Company and I'd met this Guy Matt at Escape. The city school escape to the words years And we stayed in touch. And I was telling you about some of the things that I was doing the publishing world I want to. I was trying to while of publishing at quote publishing uncovered. That's trying to bring to light all the discussions. I had with my publishing friends that I thought that a lot of writers didn't have didn't have access to we talking this because he came from this logging background self publishing back on. I came from this traditional publishing industry background. I'm we just thought well. Wouldn't it be cool if we created a community where we could really really hone in on the craft of writing where we interviewed writers that really inspired US across all mediums You know had these owners compensation in a public space and so we decided to pitch the library in St Martin's lane. This idea that took it. I think a week before Fest Event. I remember talking to me insane. I think we've done it to To last minute I didn't think anyone's GONNA cut my. Why don't we postponed? And I remember saying to him. I don't care I just want to have this conversation public with my my friend and editon need Mauvais. She was at the time. I think she was a commissioning editor at tour director on a shadow. I want to have this. I want to bring to light conversation. We often have about publishing industry and so we went ahead and did it and she said he showed up. We go surprised but we loved it and so this was a year ago. I'm continued to run events. We started doing events of House though bright. The lockdown happened. Oh my and we have an event coming up with holly born. I know she's an awesome young adult and adult writer and she really just has this magic skill of really getting to the heart of what people are thinking. She character so authentic. And so we had this event lined up with hat and not an I. We will getting the news of everything that was happening and we just saw. What can we do? How do we respond to? This will probably put stuff online. I guess haven't rethought how we're going to do that but let's do that. But what else can we do? And I remember. It was a Sunday night in an I like well. Wouldn't it be nice if we just wrote every single day? Maybe at an even with that hearing about. Why are we just right? Why don't we feel like two weeks? Commit to writing every single morning and see if anyone's to come along on this journey with us and I was like okay sure. Let me come to Canada. Tried to lock pitches and the first couple really awful and it took home tied at the really pushed it like getting close to midnight whatever before we actually published Advertising the next morning and so I thought also K. known since shop. It's finally snot and I will write together will be good because we both have books backing on. Its well and ninety percent up was like awesome Nice I I feel a little bit less alert and we continue it. It's been seven weeks now. We've had over five hundred riders. Join US what was it. Like working at quaker's back in two thousand eight when it was publishing the English translation of the girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Nelson arguably. That's the title that made quercus name. I remember being around when they'll publicizing. It wasn't a done deal at all in a back. Then this is two thousand eight. Maybe testing seven thousand eight like people want interested in foreign books and they still want to lodge creates a big sort of. It's an issue English speaking Knock it can be. Quite reluctant can be resistant to reading these front additions to go. Dragon TATTOO WAS. She rejected by a number of other English publishes but it was accepted by Michael Press which specialized in foreign editions works in translation because it costs money to translate easy and so I watched Nikki and team just sort of run around. They were getting hold of all the blog as they possibly could. They're giving away free copies at Waterloo. London mostly station and it just it started to Started to come to the point where people were demanding the next on the next book and sort of off jokingly saying Oh gosh I'm GONNA have to learn Swedish order to read the next we waiting for them to be translated and it. It really made the fortune that company so caucus than that was stabbed the big time so much anymore but that was the talk to that really push them into into big league before that they were a small publisher and I know I know this because I remember going to w snakes. I sort of a tagged along to the sales team and we overheard someone in Smith's sort of slightly having us saying yeah. They're not really that big apart from Nas kind of ride actually because you get treated accordingly At least back then by the tennis is if you're a big publisher you get given a bit more prestigious little indie publisher which were time you know really. Yoni as good as your last big burke so I know stick national that entire series. I read that as well as the child. Jack Recheck Harry Potter and Steven Letter. I read those entire series every year. It's like my comfort read. Tell me how the Royces our works and alleviate some of the problems of trying to write under lockdown by saying this isn't this isn't magic. What's magic is this community? What's magic has you show up and actually right with us? We just WANNA hold that space for you. We want to be here every single day. Same time and we ask everyone to sort of shed intentions to the day. We love seeing the rain across all the different mediums. You know someone a thesis some during poetry someone writing a novel someone reading a blog post someone. Just general someone doing a grownup occasion. Just people who want to right. They want to write together. So we we talk about being alone together and it sounds Kinda Qassam's GonNa try like I would almost if I wasn't part of it I would think. Yeah you're just blowing smoke up your ass like that actually does something to help when you get together. Every single day with a group of people like on the number of words written one go said today that she'd written eighteen thousand words with us since we started Another a friend of mine. She has joined us. She's she's she's just saying how much how well she's doing on her. Phd since she joined us There's another really lovely lady who is being frightened of posting something on a blog. And she did that through. The concept is pretty straightforward. You signed an him. You set your intention. You chairs hot drink. Can you get down to work? And then off to be people to share their work and then off to it's off to the IRS. Done not an I tend to hang out for five ten minutes off towards anyone who wants to chat and his off sometimes some of the stuff that people put up because people especially now in the lockdown coming with all sorts of things that are going on in their lives like some people may have lost someone out there struggling with grief from something else that maybe it's triggered by the lockdown. Some people are lonely. I want I am. This is what I'm curious about is it is it because when lockdown right now is that what it is is it that we. Aw essentially we you know. We can't go to a cafe in and have that buzz around us that their full. This is the equivalent or is it inherently for many of us writing is incredibly personal and difficult thing do where so plagued by self-doubt al-also. We're plagued by distractions that we need. Some sort of sense of grounding and that grounding is a bunch of people in very monsoon. We get emails all the time every day. In fact we'll get will normally get at least at least one if not several messages and we'll have people You know the we have Patriot page. We have a bias. A coffee page. We get a lot of emotion about people from from people's messages sang. This is what's keeping me going. I am more extreme cases where people are going through. Actually really difficult circumstances are like this is what I wake up for. An again is what you're saying is interesting. Idea of how are brains adapting to this to the online world? We're forced to in this particular case because we can't go anywhere else and I feel like scrolling and being just watching videos online is no longer enough because if for example people on Youtube who film themselves studying and say join me so you can actually watch someone that sounds strange but true like you can. This is a medical student. He's like well. If you'll also studying medicine money join me his video. She Point Video Camera Him. He's studying he's also quite good looking. Try Magin House. I think I think now we I certainly have a seat of like a need fed. Nive real human close as I possibly can and if it means it's on Zoom I'll take it and I think we are. I feel like in this lockdown suddenly adapting to this new normal edge live being the best I can possibly get. There is something about the collective community I it's interesting I I'm big. I'm big Fan of editor. He's sort of editorial mentor Sean. Coin and he's he's crazy story storage universe. That's the story grid Website Story Grid Dot Com that linkoping the shown to now by tomorrow the story. Good Universe that I I write for. I subscribed to them. I I run a podcast for them. And he talks about this concept of a new sphere which is like the collective conscious You up contributing to the narrative of the world not zoom room and with together. Does this I feel like I can only sense that Collected the all trying to make a better world? That's how it feels sales. That were that to try and make the best of the situation. We have right now. I mean content is therapy content is content is one of the beautiful things about the Internet. And it's obviously has it's incredibly dockside. Were wrong information is is propagated but what you have on the flip side. Is this ability to be closer to be influenced by thinkers That can really change. Shift your way of life you know. I always think about this idea of the average of the five people you spend time with each day that I came from that concept of being banded around forever who is that guy. Spend a lot of time with my girlfriend. I'm probably influenced by HA Actually very well or rarely see them in and it's through podcasts. Through their blog. So it's like Sean Coin Manitoba on editorial mental at Ryan Holiday Grant Kaduna. Seth Godin these people I I will think about what they say. And I'll try and apply to what I do and this is where the power of the Internet is. The only reason I mentioned it now is obviously. This has been around for ages. But I've never felt so in need of it as I did as as I have recently. So when when this terrible situation occurred here. I was trying to find the right thinkest follower to push me into the right mindset and I tend to be quite tough love. I need tough love so I listened to grant turn as a center. Brian Holiday. What bad take was on the lockdown and particularly how to apply this to art when it came to run holiday Godin they all have these really interesting opinion so I feel like in this age. We have so many opportunities. Finally we followed him. He has pulled advice on. What's in the digital age? Okay so if few new to writing and you're thinking I really want to write a book. Here are two questions you can ask yourself one of them fest one is what's the takeaway of the book? What do I want my Rita to go away? Feeling knowing second question is who would you like to share a shelf with so they're going to be some books in the market that you think? Yeah I'd love for Rita that book to read my book. Once vaunted those questions you can have a look at their titles and ask yourself what would takeaways from those books and if you really want to push it further you can actually determine what genre is what is what is the value of stake in that book and if you WanNa be Super Geeky you can also look at. What's the beginning middle end about? How do they hook into that story? How did they build on that story? And what is the inevitable but surprising ending to that story? That can just help kick start your for about. You'll story. I get a lot of people. Ask me can have an idea for a book that sets nonfiction so she. When it's like a free long freelancer what should I do? Should I self publish Should I get on the traditional Now here my folks in this ban mind that I come from the traditional welts. I've seen that But who am I? Work with London might on working closely with match nutty who self published unclogged. I've definitely be opening my eyes up to the other the other side of things. I think that in the end the way you approach publishing is there's no one right pot show being self published. Do you have a lot more control? You will be responsible for commissioning editors Zayda etc and distribution That's the most of it's going to be on on Amazon probably if it's a book But on the flip side you get to keep it more royalty find that where someone has has a large ish audience or is open to growing that woody. Allen's south of the Sheen is perfectly good route to go down now people like the prestige of going down published purpose shooting. That's upstate fine to do that. I think that finding an agent to clean the CAN. Us is important. I'm getting publishing. Deal is Great George. Vance Committee vary. It doesn't mean that you're gonNA accommodate shape. I in fact probably not so much at but what's good about. That is that they have all that stuff. I talked about but designing the editorial they'll do that for you. You will get a lot less wilty because because they take a to a massive cut the one thing that stays true whether you self published published is that you'll probably have to do a lot the publicity marketing yourself. Most publishing houses will allocate some point. Maybe six seven months before you'll publication you sit with that book sits in that June. How much money can can they realistically allocate? Depending on who you are and I don't necessarily see that as bad thing so whether you go down the self published rate which some people is like. I say it's purely they. They want control. And that's the happy to take that sort of hit on prestige if you if you see that when someone comes to mean a should get traditionally publish yourself purpose. I asked them why they WANNA get published. What out for is it. Because they want to grow their brand well self publishing can probably do that for you but in order to do that. You probably have to start your publicity your marketing at the same time choosing one form one platform works fee inconsistently putting content out there so for example. If you're writing a book about setting up a starter you might want test out. Some of those ideas in Articles Test material sent out extracts. You Tunisia you can start to build a group of Bay readers who help you support your book is it comes out. The other thing is in order for all of this way thing that you have to do is be be Thomas. Be True to who your be. Have the courage to to write about what you WANNA ride about others. None of this is worth it like I. Sometimes I think people see publishing as as an end game and I think it's just one of many many ways that we can reach our audience people who we can help and what's coming up next at the London right salon. We Have Chris. Gulliver talking about how to create a writing community at. That's coming up at the end of. May We also have a masterclass for how to pitch literary agents with Rachel Man. From the JOE on one agency and we have wonderful Moss to close with Louise's gross out. Who is a hitch? Shibuk editorial director and she'll be talking about how to create a pitchy Sapporo for talk about Roy team during the down with me if you'd like to find on the Internet. She's at Paro edits on twitter and at publishing uncovered on Instagram London. Writers assault on is at writer. Salman to s in the middle there on twitter and London rights asylum again to yeses there on instagram. Of course all these links will be in the show to thank you for listening. We'll speak again soon. In meantime please rate and review the podcast on our poll costs and if you did enjoy upside piece ten of French if you'd like to chat to me get in touch. Id Social Media. I love hearing from you. Take care of yourself by.