Rhyme Corner: Publishing you say?

Sometimes, you have to explain what publishing is to people that aren’t very interested in books. These people tend to have trouble getting their head around the fact that there’s this whole industry behind the scenes and this industry isn’t just Author, Editor, Bookshop.
So here’s a rhyme. Memorise it. You’ll thank me when you don’t have to have this conversation again:

“So what do you do for a living?”
“I work in publishing.”
“Huh. Books. Yeah. So…you edit books?”
*sigh* “Yeah. Yeah, I edit books.”

You’re welcome.

Posted on February 8, 2010 at 9:00 am in Comic and tagged with , , . Follow responses to this post with the comments feed. You can leave a comment or trackback from your own site.

3 Responses

  1. Very nicely put, Sophie. Here’s one from me.

    ‘So what do you do for a living?’
    ‘I write novels.’
    ‘Huh, so you must be very rich, like J.K. Rowling.’
    ‘I write crime novels.’
    ‘Ah, rich like James Patterson then.’
    Sigh. ‘Yeah.. like James Patterson.’

    Writing in Rhyme

    We toil away for days and days
    With pen and PC in a writer’s haze
    Creating, researching, dreaming up plots
    Until many months later we have something hot.
    We hone and revise until sick of the thing
    Then it’s off to the editor with an e mail ping.
    We wait for weeks and with bated breath
    Has it been given the kiss of death?
    Some minor changes just here and there
    We make them grudgingly, but with flair.
    Copy edits and proofs keep us very busy
    And the cover image makes us feel rather dizzy!
    Then silence follows for weeks, maybe more
    Until a lumpy parcel arrives at our door.
    The novel’s in print, hurrah you cry
    But are sales and marketing giving it a try?
    If you’re really lucky, or quite well known
    You’ll get some PR from a girl called Joan.
    Is it selling well? You have no idea
    Maybe it’s flopped, you think with great fear.
    Will they want your next novel, dare you ask?
    Oh, well, nothing for it, just get on with the task.

    We toil away…

    **EDIT from Sophie
    Brilliant! Love it! Everything is so much better in rhyme.
    I often get this from my dad:
    “you should write a book – that’s where the money is”
    Then I laugh in his face.

  2. Glad you liked it. You have a great sense of humour (so’s your Dad by the sound of it!). I’ve just put my ditty on my blog with a link to yours. Keep ‘em coming.

  3. Eileen says:

    Sometimes people don’t even understand the “editing” bit. We once got a call, from two academics no less, who said they understood it took five weeks to publish a book. No. Printing maybe, the whole publishing process takes a lot longer!
    More often than I would like I meet people who confuse publishing with printing.

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