Monday, October 24, 2005

Pirate Books -- In or out?

I went to our local conference last weekend. I got to meet Jennifer Blake, Linda Castillo, Susan Andersen and Linda Winsor -- all fabulous authors. They gave me a lot of insight and all of them said that their publishing careers were rife with ups and downs. It is a wacky business and no matter how well you plan, things don't always go the way you want them to.

I visited with two literary agents and an editor. I had submitted early to one of the agents so she could get familiar with my work before we met. She asked me how many Pirate books I had seen on the shelves lately and I said, "Hardly any." She told me that I should have gotten a clue that those kinds of books were not popular with the publishers because they didn't sell well in public. I told her that I've had a couple of readers asking me if I would write one -- and if there weren't any on the shelves, I was thinking it was about time someone wrote one! But after talking to her, I was really disappointed because I love my pirate story -- and I was dreading talking to the editor because I was going to pitch a book that "wasn't popular." Anyway, after I started my pitch, the editor from Bantam said she loved the premise and wanted to see it right away. So I was tickled pink!!! The other agent I had an appointment with was also thrilled to hear I had a pirate book (she said she loved playing some electronic pirate game that I wasn't familiar with -- does anyone know of one?), and she wants to see my material. So the day ended very nicely! :)

After having this experience, I decided to create a poll to see who likes pirate books. Please visit my official home page to vote. I need everyone's input! I'll close the poll at the end of November, 2005.

Thanks! Gloria

13 comments:

Sharon Schulze said...

Good luck, Gloria! I think pirates romances are great (I know, _real_ pirates probably were just scary . . . but that's why we have imaginations :-))

I read some wonderful pirate stories early in my formative years (Sabatini's books, Frank Yerby's "The Golden Hawk"--my mom had an extensive collection of swashbuckling adventures); that's one of the reasons I love to read (and write) historical romances.

And of course, there's "Pirates of the Caribbean" . . . the movie seems pretty popular!

Nancy Herkness said...

Pirates not popular? Tell that to Johnny Depp....

Candice Gilmer said...

Good luck with the editor and the agent! Glad to hear that there's interest for your story!

It would seem to me that if there weren't a lot of pirate stories out there, that's a sign that some need to be written!

I would imagine with the popularity of Pirates of the Carribean, (and Nancy's comment about Johnny Depp -- who wouldn't want Depp to rescue them?) that pirate stories would be wanted a lot!

And after consulting with my video game educated husband, he knows there's a new game out there, but he can't find the title of it.... Of course, now he's on a quest, and it'll make him nutty until he finds it... So I'll be back if he can figure it out.

Sue-Ellen Welfonder said...

Gloria, I would love to read your pirate story! Best of wishes to you in finding a good home for it!

carolyn proctor said...

When I think of pirates I think of a novel I read maybe 35 years ago (when I was VERY young and impressionable) called "Way of a Buccaneer." Also loved the Yul Brynner movie where he played Jean Lafitte. I think it was called simply, "The Buccaneer." Charleton Heston played Andrew Jackson, and I think Eva Marie Saint was the Governor's daughter... anyway you can see I like pirate stories. So, yes, you have my 100% encouragement to write some!

Carolyn Proctor
author, "Elisabeth Samson, Forbidden Bride"
www.carolynproctor.com

Gloria Harchar said...

Thanks, you guys, for all the encouraging words! And Candice, I hope your dh finds the game she was talking about! :) I felt pretty stupid nodding as if I knew. Ugh. I should have fessed up. :0

JoAnn Ross said...

I've always loved pirate heroes! So much in fact, that I manage to slip them into my contemporary stories. For instance, in an old Temptation, my heroine secretly wrote erotic romance, which allowed me to write one of her fantasies where the pirate ravished her.

I played with the pirate theme again by setting Bayou Bad Boys, my Dec Brava, in the Louisiana bayou. Actor Gabriel Broussard, is back home after starring in a movie about the real life local pirate hero Jean Lafitte. Gabriel and my heroine get to act out a lot of pirate fantasies in that one, chere. LOL

As for the scrumptious Johnny Depp, I happened to have been searching the web yesterday for some pirate stuff of my own and ran across the plotline for Pirates of the Carribean 2, Dead Man's Chest. I can't wait for it to come out!

So, Gloria, obviously, if you write a pirate book, I'll be first in line to buy it!!!

Deborah Matthews said...

Gloria, write it and we will come.

Without admitting my age, I will admit my love for pirates started with Errol Flynn. I admit I miss the many pirate romances that used to grace the shelves.

It's the same with historicals. I keep hearing they're dead or dying, yet a number make the Bestseller lists.

JoAnn Ross said...

Deborah -- Funny you should mention Flynn. I have Captain Blood shipping from Netflix today. I first watched that on the late, late show when I was about 8 or 9 and my baby sitter had fallen asleep, so I sneaked out of bed to watch our snowy TV screen. (The Cascade mts blocked most of our signal.) Like you, from that night on, I was hooked on pirates.

Terry Z McDermid said...

One of my favorite books as a child was "Jade," by Sally Watson, about a girl who runs away and is taken aboard a ship with the real-life female pirates Anne Bonney and Mary Read. The story stuck with me so much I finally did some research last year and tracked down a company that had reprinted the books and bought a copy. I'm sure that book is partly why I did so many of my history reports as fiction, blending the required facts with a storyline.

And our first DVD purchase was "Pirates of the Caribbean"!

Deborah Matthews said...

JoAnn, I'm getting so old, I couldn't even remember the title of Captain Blood. (g) Errol also made another pirate movie-The Sea Hawk.

Candice Gilmer said...

Gloria,

The title to that game is Sid Meier's Pirates. It's out for Xbox... Here's the link to the site. Looks like an interesting role playing game... Fairly new game as well...

Gail Dayton said...

There's also another, older game called TROPICO 2: PIRATE COVE which is fun for those of us who like the 'building community' games--you have to set up your island to support pirates, build pirate ships and send them out to pillage and stuff. I really get a kick out of it.