Here's a little bit more:
COURTNEY BONGIOLATTI, JORDAN BROWN, JENNIFER HUNT, & ARI LEWIN—Success Stories: Four Editors Distill Secrets of a Successful Book
• Focus on what makes you different from others—think of your style as your brand
o Give yourself a brand that sets you apart
E.g., Pixar = you always know what a Pixar movie is, even though they’ve only done one sequal. This is b/c of their style/brand.
• It’s difficult to adjust your writing to a trend just to sell a book. The only time this really works is if you’re already established, and someone approaches you with an idea.
There isn’t just one type of success; there are many, and all of them are equally important to a house.
TYPES OF SUCCESS:
1) A backless gem = one that sells year after year, way after the advance pays out
E.g., A Mango-Shaped Space
2) The great debut = a book that is launched successfully and solidly, with an established fan base anticipating the next book
The secret to this = YA bloggers + community
E.g., 20 Boy Summer
3) Books that find an author’s voice
Where an author hits his/her own perfect, creative note
E.g., Julie Ann Peters, Luna = sex/gender identity explosed
4) Career-changing books = The book that books an author on the map and makes people search for the author’s backlist.
Books that make the writer say, “I am an author with confidence.”
A book w/a strong vision, even if non-conventional
E.g., Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr
5) Books with a strong—even if non-conventional—vision
Author sticks to his/her vision about what the book can be and makes it a success—it’s not the idea itself, but, rather, the execution.
E.g., The Curious Garden by Peter Brown
6) The phenomenon
A book that takes the world by storm
Great storytelling and characters
• The best guarantee for success is to take the time and do great work.
• Write b/c you love it and for no other reason.