I’ve started and stopped at least three blog posts. I’d like to say they were fascinating, riveting posts that you all wish you could see but, no. There’s a reason I started and stopped them. *yawn* I’ll tell you what’s been on my mind today, instead. Some of you might actually find it interesting.
Since RWA, one of the things we’ve been facing is the possibility of losing some editors because of the change in bylaws that the general assembly voted through. Essentially, anyone working as an acquiring editor must change their RWA membership to associate member, rather than general member. Associate members cannot vote, hold office, or belong to the PRO/PAN/PASIC loops. This was a big blow to a few of our editors who are also authors very active in their local chapters, with an interest in being able to do at least one, if not all of those above things. We currently have, I think, 12 editors including myself. Apparently, I’m a freak of nature because I’m the only one who’s not either an author or an aspiring author. The only thing I aspire to write are emails, blog posts and company guides (which is apparently why I’m such a good executive editor).
So last month we lost a full time editor. I hired three editors to replace her (we’re moving away from having any full time editors with the exception of myself, and even I am cutting back my editing schedule due to an increase in admin duties). I hired three editors, with plans to hire at least one more (which I did today) if not two. Then the RWA general assembly met and I found I was facing losing three-yes three-editors. You have no idea how many times my mind has been over this problem in the past few weeks.
I know it probably seems as though it shouldn’t be that hard to hire editors, but I’m picky (I hope that’s actually a good thing). In this most recent round of hiring, 145 people emailed me indicating interest in the position.And of those, I’ve so far only hired 4. 4 people of 145 isn’t a great percentage. And I think I’ve mentioned this before, but hiring is probably my least favorite part of the job for a variety of reasons that maybe I’ll blog about some day (if I can do it without turning it into a rant about being professional and putting your best foot forward when applying for a JOB). Since I also now do the hiring for the final line editors, as of last month, I get double the fun. Wheee!
As of today, I do know that I only have the possibility of losing one editor. The other two won’t be going right now (whew!). The positive light in that is that the one left to decide is one of the newest hires, so no authors will be shuffled around again. The bad news is that she was one of the 3% that I hired. Three percent people. I don’t want to go through that again! I did mention I’m picky?
I know a lot of people are anxiously awaiting the reopening of submissions since we’ve been closed from mid-March, but that hasn’t been something I could even think about until we got the editor situation straightened out. Since we seem to be well on our way to doing that, I can turn my attention to thinking about re-opening. We will have some changes in our policy when we re-open. Though this hasn’t officially gone on our website, I have spoken about it at RWA, during our publisher spotlight, as well as when asked about re-releases by various authors. The down and dirty of it is that we will not be accepting submissions of re-releases from authors who haven’t previously signed new, unpublished material with us. In other words, if you don’t have a previous contract with Samhain, we won’t look at a re-release from you. After some discussion with Crissy, this is actually a decision I made at least a month ago–and almost a week BEFORE Triskelion closed their doors.
Given the number of smaller epublishers that have been having problems, folded or otherwise, we’d already seen a rise in re-releases, even though we’re closed to submissions. We had suspicions that once we re-opened, this would be an even worse problem. So our solution was not to say “no re-releases” but to say “not until you’ve signed new, previously unpublished material with us.” Once you’ve done that and you have an editor at Samhain , re-release away (just don’t expect your editor to sign them all, lol). I suspect there will be some people who will be unhappy with this, but we do what we must to relieve some pressure on our editors, as well as to keep the business as strong as possible (ie not flooded with previously published material).