Thursday, May 26, 2011

Credit where credit is due

The movie industry is a big believer in giving credit for everyone who does everything to make a product. Whether it's caterers or animal wranglers or the guy who takes out the trash on the studio lot, they want to make sure we get a chance to see each person's name climbing up the screen at the end of a movie.

The publishing industry is completely different. It's a largely invisible part of the current debate about whether to use professional publishing or self publishing. In fact, for a book like Imaginary Jesus or Night of the Living Dead Christian, there are at least twenty people involved in getting the book put together (that's not including, for instance, the sales staff). That's publishers, editors, designers, artists, marketers, product managers, typesetters and so on. Not to give the illusion that they're all working on the book forty hours a week or something, but the fact is that they touch the book... they have something to do with its quality. Making a book through traditional publishing is very much a team sport, and a good team can make the difference between a good experience for the author and a great project or a terrible experience and lousy product.

As it turns out, I have an excellent team. I really like them. I had talked with my editorial team about doing a Credits page for NLDC. I wanted to get all those names out there into the public, so people could see who worked on the book. Unfortunately, I got the word today that there's not room in the book for the credits page. I am really disappointed. We'll put a credits page or list online at some point, but for now, Publishing has bested me once again. I don't know who is responsible, but believe me, when I figure it out, you'll see their name in the credits as "PERSON WHO TRIED TO DELETE THE CREDITS."