Monday, 3 December 2012

Comings and Goings

If you want an 'advent calendar' with a difference - check in to the Pocketeers' blog daily - for their advent calendar of heroines. 

Sadly, no sooner did we get all excited about the Easy Reads, which replaced My Weekly's Pocket Novels and then ran alongside them, than we hear they're to be axed. Sally Q confirmed this today with Maggie Seed. However, still send in your short novels and they'll be considered for the My Weekly imprint. There will be two published a month, and traditional romances are required. Personally I don't think they've given Easy Reads long enough to get established. I loved them. But I guess the sales figures aren't high enough. So we're back where we were. 


Rena George said...

Yes, it's a sad business that the Easy Reads have been axed after such a short trial period.
Something must have gone seriously wrong with DC Thomson's market research.
Maggie Seed told me in an email today that the novels 'have been suspended while we evaluate sales.'
Someone in the promotions department put it a bit more bluntly, saying the Easy Reads had been cancelled because they didn't appear to be what the readers wanted, which is why they have re-instated the fortnightly Pocket Novels.
Reading between the lines suggests there must have been a huge number of returns from the shops and newsagents for DC Thomson to pull the plug on an exciting new line that everyone involved had seemed so proud of at the launch.

Antonia said...

It's such a shame. I think they look great. I wonder if they would have done better away from the mags and nearer to paperbacks in places like WH Smith, marketed as novellas.

I'm reading Sally Quilford's Bonfire Memories and it's really good.

The time they've been available doesn't seem a long enough time to judge. I struggled to find an Easy Read initially.

Anonymous said...

Hi - must admit I haven't read one of the Easy Reads but I did see them and thought they looked incongruous amongst the magazines. I'd agree with Antonia in that I think they'd have done much better marketed as novellas in the book section. KH

Sally Quilford said...

I thought it would be better to market them amongst the books too, as they were lost amongst the magazines, and may not have attracted the sort of readership that DC Thomson were aiming at.

I hope the pocket novels continue, not just because I make a reasonable living writing them, but also because with the Dandy going too, it will be a shame for another well known DC Thomson line to completely disappear from the shelves.

And thanks, Antonia! The novella is available on Kindle if anyone hasn't managed to get it. (forgive me the plug, Womag!)

Rena George said...

I think some supermarkets did display them in the book section, Antonia, I know my local store did.
But I noticed that while the crime genres seemed to sell quite quickly, the racier ones stayed on the shelves.
Maybe the sexy black covers scared off the regular pocket novel readers.

The Dandy, on the other hand, just lost favour with the more sophisticated tastes of today's children.
So although it's sad that after this week the iconic comic, as we know it, disappears from the shelves, DC Thomson is launching a new digital version.
I take my hat off to them for this, and wish them luck - but its still the end of an era.

Lynne Hackles said...

I know of several writers who informed DCThomson that Easy Reads sounded as if they were aimed at special needs. Perhaps they'll resurface under a more suitable name.

Edith said...

Yes it was a rather quick turnaround, wasn't it?! :)

Sally Quilford said...

Lynne, I noticed that whilst the boxes in which they were situated said 'Easy Reads' they hadn't put it on the books themselves, so maybe DC Thomson realised that.

It is a pity they didn't have more of a chance though. It was nice to be able to write freely and not worry too much about the usual moral restrictions.

Janice said...

Oh, that's such a shame! Like a lot of other WOMAG writers, I saw them in the supermarket and wished them well.

I agree with those WOMAG writers who said they should have been placed with the novels. The easy Reads aren't/weren't magazines.

So sorry they have gone!

Julie B. said...

It's such a shame that yet another market has bit the dust, but I do wonder why DC Thomson's revamp was so radical that they did away with the beloved My Weekly brand altogether when they rebranded the Pocket Novels. As there was next to no publicity about this revamp, readers were probably unaware of this change and they react positively to this change.m

Julie B. said...

I meant to say they didn't react positively to this change in my last comment!

Carol MacLean said...

Coming to the discussion a little bit late - but just to say there is some indication from Maggie that the My Weekly pocket novels in future might be a bit more 'modern' in what is allowed romance wise between the main characters.

lucyanna118 said...

Just popped on the look at the requirements for the Easy Reads. I was so excited when I saw these were coming out!
My romance writing is a little too racy for the majority of mags, but I feel ready and have time to concentrate on something longer. With a plot scheme ready and waiting to go onto the paper I'm sad to see they have vanished quicker than they came!
Oh dear :(