Tuesday 21 October 2008

Tripping the Blight Unfantastic

This is Carol Burnett as Scarlet O'Hara, in the scene where
Scarlet too proud to be poor makes a dress out of curtains. Except this Scarlet O'Hara leaves in the curtain pole.

This unfantastic economic Downturn has everyone speculating about the future.

The Media Guardian actually wondered if there was a silver lining for TV.
Sipping champagne, more than one TV executive said that when the economy goes down the pan, people turn to home entertainment to cheer themselves up.

"Depression time is a good time for entertainment programming," says Rob Clark, vice-president of worldwide entertainment and production for FremantleMedia, home of The X Factor and Britain's Got Talent. "People don't want to go home and be clobbered with dreary stuff." Read more

Apparently rental firm Lovefilm had a 40 percent jump in business since the credit crunch began.

Hey, does that mean people will be READING more as well?

Well, not quite so, based on according to this report on the ongoing Frankfurt Book Fair:
Looking at the numbers, the answer is yes, it already has been. There are fewer exhibitors here than there were last year (7,373 compared to 7,448), and a recent survey of 90 German publishers shows that business was down 3% in Germany over the first nine months of the year.
However, like their TV counterparts, there is much optimism amongst publishers:
But publishers here are resolutely optimistic about the fate of books in a recession - one agent said that "books are good in the good times, and great in the bad times". In the words of Richard Charkin, former Macmillan chief, now Bloomsbury executive director, "banks may crash, derivatives flounder, hedge funds wither, dotcoms rise and fall but somehow or other writers, publishers, booksellers, literary agents, publishing consultants and old bookish friends always manage to congregate for the autumnal bunfight known by the single word, Frankfurt".
It's a good time to remind ourselves WHY we are in this business. It's because we like to write, not because we like money. As Justine Larbalestier (Magic or Madness) blogged today:

I keep coming across wannabe writers who believe that writing is an easy way to make heaps of money. Nope.1 Your odds of being paid good money to write novels year after year are vanishingly small. Most published writers aren’t.

I cannot emphasise this enough: If you don’t love writing don’t try to get published. (emphasis mine!) Read more

And speaking of calamity, disaster and poverty, Julie Bertagna (Exodus, Zenith) over on Facebook posted this link about great children's books about financial ruin!


  1. Haha, that Carol Burnett picture is brilliant! I might draw something based on that for my next sketch, cool.

  2. I suppose if we are heading for a recession then we'll all have to start wearing curtains! I, for one, am still clinging stubbornly to the belief that one day I WILL make some money from writing. One day...?

  3. hi sue, sarah!

    thanks for the comments! the carol burnett gone with the wind sketch is a favourite from my childhood.

    hey sarah, did you notice that blogger now allows you to log in using your livejournal id?

  4. I'm thinking that my bedroom curtains could make a very elegant dress and trouser suit...

    Re writing in downturns - I may have mentioned this before... Publishers are apparently hunting in their backlists for books on growing your own, making your own etc. Evidently Mills & Boon does tremendous business in recessions - as to all stories of escapism and the lives of the rich and famous - a la Jilly Cooper's Polo... I suppose when the going gets tough, the tough need to dream.

  5. thanks for that, nicky. maybe it's a good time to start reading M&B again. i loved them as a teenager (there, i confessed)


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