I heard a distressing tale this afternoon. A published and very successful writer with an established and dedicated readership (let’s call her author Number One) met yesterday morning with her editor in New York. Everything was fine, her editor was enthusiastic, and her book option was about to be exercised. Then she got a call just a few hours later. Something had occurred in the intervening time that may well have derailed the deal.
We don’t know all the details of what happened, of course, but, as reported by Dear Author and elsewhere around the Web yesterday, Random House announced a major restructuring and consolidation of imprints and Number One’s book seems to be caught in the carnage. Interestingly enough, she believes that her editor was completely clueless about what was about to go down during their morning meeting.
Yet another published writer friend who is also with the same house (let’s call her author Number Two) expressed relief this afternoon that her next multi-book contract is already in the hopper at Random House – totally understandable considering today’s perilous publishing climate. But there’s another interesting twist to this one: Number Two believes that her editor may well have been aware of what was in the air since her contract was decidedly fast-tracked.
As they say on CNN, this story is developing.