Two International Rights networking events were held in the first week of September, kicking off with an update on the US Market, followed by a roundtable discussion with several international participants on their experiences with the YA market.
US Market overview
In a vibrant discussion led by moderator Nerrilee Weir, Australian publishers, literary agents and other members of the industry were fortunate to hear from Judith Curr, Emilia Rhodes, Pamela Malpas and Allison Hellegers, on the state of the US Market.
They provided valuable insights into selling rights into a ‘foreign’ market and offered some advice to consider when approaching these markets. Applicable to all rights sales, the consensus from these experienced panellists was to begin discussions earlier in the book production process.
For more insights, members can view the recording of this webinar here.
Trialling a new format, the first of the roundtable events were held on 6 September for the YA community. The purpose of this event was to make connections with international colleagues at a time when international travel has not been so readily available. There were 13 international territories represented for this roundtable, and the similarities and differences among so many varied markets was forefront in the discussion.
While many of the territories found it difficult to pinpoint the exact age group that YA appeals to, there was the general feeling that adult readers are also interested in these books. However, the various markets differed on appropriate topics and themes that they look for when creating content for these readers.
Where would a discussion on YA be without at least one mention of BookTok? Although there were many experiences with BookTok discussed, one experience from the Portuguese representative highlighted the vagaries this phenomenon has brought to YA. When a certain book was discovered by a Brazillian BookToker, the sales half a world away in Portugal were suddenly increased despite of the length of time it had already been available on shelves. Participants in the roundtable shared their experiences with these surprising twists in sales.
Despite language and geographical differences, operating in the same market created common ground for the participants to share insights and forge ongoing connections.
The topic for the next roundtable discussion will be graphic novels. The final Rights Networking events for 2022 are scheduled for November 2022, with further details to be announced closer to the date.
The APA Rights Networking program is generously supported by the Australia Council for the Arts.