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Trek Literature "...Good words. That's where ideas begin."

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Old July 12 2009, 11:22 PM   #1
Stag
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Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

I understand the rationale behind the present business decision regarding restricting publishing of TREK books at one per month. I thought it was a good idea when it was put in place, and may still make sense. It certainly yielded a constant string of high quality, enjoyable TREK fiction that has gone where no TREK as gone before.

However, I would like to point out that at the time the decision was made TREK was off in the wilderness, no TV series, no movies, no future prospects and the fan base was shrinking. Today we have a new movie, record breaking box office for TREK, excitement of the fan base plus new fans/renewed fans.

Not to mention that we now have another TREK universe to compete for publishing slots - nuTREK.

That gives us TOS, TNG, DS9, VOY, ENT, NF, Vanguard, KRAD's IKS Gorkon series, and nuTREK not to mention the every now and again Mirror Universe books. That is alot of competition for just 12 annual slots.

Is there a possibility of reviewing the publication restrictions?

I grant you the economy is not where it was 5 years ago either and I don't know what the impact of that has been on book sales. For all I know the economy may in fact negate the potential increase in new book buyers by losing devoted TREK book buyers who have lost jobs or are having to curtail non-essential purchases.

Anyway, thought I would pose the question to those most knowledgeable regarding the behind the scenes decisions - any chance of more books per month? Marco? Margaret? Anyone?

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Old July 12 2009, 11:29 PM   #2
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

Stag wrote: View Post
Marco? Margaret? Anyone?

Marco isn't working for Pocket anymore, he was fired last December because of the economical crisis and since now Margaret is editing the line alone it's unlikely the output will be increased anytime soon.
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Old July 12 2009, 11:32 PM   #3
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

I speak only from personal speculation. But I am sure Pocket continuously considers the scale of their output. And I'm even more sure they are keeping a very close eye on how the new film has effected their sales, and how well the books that spin out of that next year do. Should there be a reasonable increase in sales one would assume they would want to capitalise on that and make proportionate increases in output.

The present system though really isn't just twelve slots at all though; those are just the mass market paperback releases, on top of that we get a variable number of trade paperbacks (including individual novels and anthologies). The pairs of Mirror and Myriad Universes anthologies we've had the past couple of years are a pretty reasonable replacement for six smaller single novels of the more crowded period. Pocket are finding ways to pump out a lot of content even when publishing fewer individual books.
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Old July 12 2009, 11:32 PM   #4
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

Stag wrote: View Post
I would pose the question to those most knowledgeable regarding the behind the scenes decisions - any chance of more books per month? Marco? Margaret? Anyone?

Marco's gone.

And the decree to go one-MMPB-per-month, many years ago now, came from higher up than Marco, IIRC. Marco countered that by upping the average wordcount per novel, and exploring additional trade paperbacks - with sometimes three novellas per volume - as a way to defeat that one-MMPB-per-month mandate.

If we went back to two-MMPBs-per-month the workload would be too much for the current staff, and they lost a whole Senior Editor position last December.

If sales soar over the next eighteen months, maybe they can justify changing things, but they've just had to rationalize, like most of the rest of the world.

Two MMPBs per month? I can barely read one per month these days!
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Old July 12 2009, 11:43 PM   #5
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Two MMPBs per month? I can barely read one per month these days!
Seconded, while I would be excited about having more Trek novels coming out I barely keep on top of the continuing series I follow as it is, I think an increase in output would make it hard for me to keep up.
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Old July 13 2009, 12:39 AM   #6
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

Defcon wrote: View Post
he was fired
I hope you don't get as many angry emails for using the F-word as I did a couple of months ago...
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Old July 13 2009, 12:56 AM   #7
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

^
Then he'd be at Defcon 1
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Old July 13 2009, 03:19 AM   #8
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

8of5 wrote: View Post
Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Two MMPBs per month? I can barely read one per month these days!
Seconded, while I would be excited about having more Trek novels coming out I barely keep on top of the continuing series I follow as it is, I think an increase in output would make it hard for me to keep up.
Me too. Plus IMO at least, it would only hurt the line, since things would have to be more rushed in order to get two whole MMPBs out a month.
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Old July 13 2009, 03:29 AM   #9
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

Damn, I did not know about Marco, I am sorry to hear about it. It was always nice to read his input here. I guess even the 'greater' TREK universe is not immune to the impact of the economy.

Thanks for the responses folks, while I, for selfish reasons, would love more novels, I understand why there are constraints.

To the authors who visit these boards - thank you for your fine work!! The problem is you are all so darned good that we just want more of your work to read!
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Old July 13 2009, 03:46 AM   #10
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

Defcon wrote: View Post
Marco isn't working for Pocket anymore, he was fired last December because of the economical crisis and since now Margaret is editing the line alone it's unlikely the output will be increased anytime soon.
Laid off, not fired, I would think.
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Old July 13 2009, 04:04 AM   #11
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

Stag wrote: View Post
Damn, I did not know about Marco, I am sorry to hear about it. It was always nice to read his input here. I guess even the 'greater' TREK universe is not immune to the impact of the economy.
Simon & Schuster had to shed staff, and it had nothing to do with Star Trek. Marco being a Senior Editor meant they just couldn't afford him. Had they kept him on, perhaps several lower paid people would have gone to make up the difference. Margaret and her team had to absorb his responsibilities into their own positions.
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Old July 13 2009, 08:39 AM   #12
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

T'Bonz wrote: View Post
Defcon wrote: View Post
Marco isn't working for Pocket anymore, he was fired last December because of the economical crisis and since now Margaret is editing the line alone it's unlikely the output will be increased anytime soon.
Laid off, not fired, I would think.
If you want to argue about semantics, but for the answering of the OP's question the result is the same, he isn't working there anymore and due to the understaffed state of the Star Trek editorial team it's unlikely that we'll see an increase in output in the foreseeable future.
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Old July 13 2009, 08:49 AM   #13
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

Defcon wrote: View Post
T'Bonz wrote: View Post
Defcon wrote: View Post
Marco isn't working for Pocket anymore, he was fired last December because of the economical crisis and since now Margaret is editing the line alone it's unlikely the output will be increased anytime soon.
Laid off, not fired, I would think.
If you want to argue about semantics, but for the answering of the OP's question the result is the same, he isn't working there anymore and due to the understaffed state of the Star Trek editorial team it's unlikely that we'll see an increase in output in the foreseeable future.
the first time I got laid off, i used the word "fired" in front of my dad and he said "don't go around telling people you were fired. you were laid off due to force reduction". The next day I'm at a party telling some people what happened and I used the phrase my dad told me and one of my friends says "you were fired?". the distinction is just lost on a lot of people...
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Old July 13 2009, 08:56 AM   #14
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

ronny wrote: View Post
the distinction is just lost on a lot of people...
But is there really that much of a distinction? In the end it boils down to one (laid off) being a euphemism for the other (fired), since the end result is the same: you're out of a job.
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Old July 13 2009, 09:47 AM   #15
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Re: Publishing question - no eyerolling - LOL

I think the problem is that for many "fired" implies incompetence in come way. And Marco certainly doesn't fit that at all.
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