New Contract – Signed!

It seems the Harlequin team is in a hurry to get things done before the holidays hit. I was told to expect a six-week wait for my contract to arrive. Instead, I received it two days after I signed the deal!

It’s always a good feeling when – after so much work – you get to sign something with such a great publisher’s name on it.

What a great Christmas present. 🙂

Harlequin Australia The Artist's Secret Sonya Heaney Contract 20th December 2019

I’m on HarperCollins.com!

hc-logo HarperCollins Publisher

Overnight I Googled myself to find my blog, and instead discovered I now have (so far, mostly empty!) author profiles on HarperCollins.com.au and HarperCollins.com. I also discovered that the tentative release date for my first book is the 4th of September. I hadn’t known until then!

Not exactly exciting news, and the title of my book is only the working title – we’re still yet to have a conversation about changing it – but it’s a start…

(If you remember my announcement that I sold my first historical romance book in March, and are wondering why I have a Harlequin contract and a HarperCollins profile, it’s because I write for a romance imprint of HarperCollins that runs their contracts through Harlequin Australia. Yes, you’re allowed to be confused!)

 

‘I can get any novel I want in 30 seconds’: can book piracy be stopped?

Theft is theft is theft. It’s disgusting that people think it’s okay to steal someone else’s income, and stealing books is a crime. Almost always, authors are making considerably less than the book pirates assume.

Here’s an article from The Guardian about the issue:

‘I can get any novel I want in 30 seconds’: can book piracy be stopped?

As publishers struggle with ‘whack-a-mole’ websites, experts, authors and Guardian readers who illegally download books, assess the damage.

And here is author Rachel Cane’s response to it:

Rachel Caine Book Piracy.

 

Another Book Community Gone?

Romance University

Today Romance University goes on hiatus. The site is a trove of information about the genre, and – until now – had regular posts from authors and others in the industry, about the romance genre, and also about publishing in general.

In this case “hiatus” seems to mean they’re leaving the site forever. They are keeping the old posts up for a while, but the community itself will be no more.

I do understand that the people running RU put in a huge amount of time and effort, and I can understand stepping away, but it’s yet another book community gone.

The more the internet takes over everything, the deader online book groups seem to become. Goodreads groups are practically a wasteland now, and most popular book forums and blogs have been shut down (e.g. Harlequin’s decision to move all their discussion over to awful Facebook, where nobody gets any anonymity).

Twitter? Useless. All the authors and bloggers moved over there, but all anybody discusses on Twitter now is Donald Trump. There’s very little in the way of meaningful discussion about books to be found.

I’ll be sorry to see Romance University go.

What is with book pirates?

A major book piracy website was shut down the other day, and the reaction has been… appalling.

ocean of pdf book piracy comment

Outraged readers, some who honestly seem to believe it’s a basic human right to read books without paying for them, are now going around the internet attacking authors for being “elitist” for preventing them from stealing their work.

I was going to write a long thing, but you know what? If you don’t understand that theft is a terrible thing, then you’re a terrible person.

It’s not “elitist” to expect someone to pay a couple of dollars for a book. Books in the United States are ridiculously cheap. You wouldn’t expect people in other jobs to work for no or next to no pay, and authors work A LOT of hours.

In the end, here’s the thing: you’re not going to die if you don’t read a book. Nobody is denying you food or shelter. Why should anybody provide you with something for free? Authors need money too.

Sent to author Michelle Harrison.

ocean of pdf book piracy comment 1

ocean of pdf book piracy comment 2

The Week: 18th – 24th June

Winter Sunshine Blue Sky Sonya Heaney 19th June 2018 Eucalyptus Tree Gum Tree Canberra Australia Australian Capital Territory Nature

Winter sunshine in Canberra.

And at the cemetery near the New South Wales/Australian Capital Territory state border on Friday afternoon.

And Lake Burley Griffin on Saturday afternoon.

R.I.P. Errol Pickford

Errol Pickford as Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet © Leslie Spatt Royal Ballet Royal Opera House

Happy Birthday to an Icon

Oksana_Chusovitina_(vault)_04-2011

My review of Heartbeat by Elizabeth Scott

My review of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

Beyond my limit!

How much more ridiculous can it get?

Cockygate apllication to trademark the word BIG cockybot

How much more ridiculous can it get?

The #cockygate saga has brought trademark trolls to the attention of the publishing world. The selfish practice of trademarking common words and phrases to shut out competition is not new, but it does seem to be getting more ridiculous every day.

Cocky, forever, rebellion – all words nobody should be able to “own”, and yet all words people are currently trying to take away from us (along with many others).

This weekend it came to light an application has been filed to trademark the word “big”.

Yes, really. BIG. A word that appears in titles all over the place, and has for as long as it’s been in existence (which is – oh – about 768 years).

I’m not sure what can be done about this, especially as most of the trademarks are coming out of the United States and not my own country, but clearly someone needs to put a stop to this nonsense.

Cockygate apllication to trademark the word BIG cockybot

The Week: 4th – 10th June

Winter Lake Burley Griffin Canberra Australia Sonya Heaney 9th June 2018 Carillon Nature Sunset pink

Winter Lake Burley Griffin Canberra Australia Sonya Heaney 9th June 2018 Carillon Nature Sunset

Canberra’s Lake Burley Griffin – with the National Carillon (a gift from the Queen that she personally opened in 1970) – late on Saturday afternoon.

It was a surprisingly dreary week here. Usually winter is really sunny, but the last few days felt like winter! At least it got sunny on Saturday afternoon!

This week in the book world has been full of drama, which I seem to have written a few thousands posts about. Sorry for the spam!

My review of A Cowboy of Convenience (Sheridan Sweethearts #2) by Stacy Henrie

A Cowboy of Convenience (Sheridan Sweethearts #2) by Stacy Henrie

A Cocky Weekend

cocky-final-2 Cocktales the cocky collective cockygate cover

Book Stuffing and Author Ethics

Book Stuffer Kindle Unlimited Scammer

Why “outing” someone makes you an utter arse – #1

and

Why “outing” someone makes you an utter arse – #2

_86601698_authorandbook Richard Brittain used Facebook to track down the reviewer, a teenage girl from Glenrothes, and drove all the way (some 800 kilometres) from the south of England t

Cover Love

Someone to Trust (Westcott Book #5) by Mary Balogh