Facebook icon Twitter icon Forward icon

Friend of Hobblebush,

Happy Poetry Month! We hope you enjoyed our first newsletter. Last month, we told you we were going to the AWP book fair; this month, we'd like to report that everything went well! We sold books, spread the word about Hobblebush, and met a number of other great publishers!

This month, you can purchase Rime of the Ancient Underwriter for 50% off!

We were very sorry to hear, shortly before we sent out this newsletter, about the passing of New Hampshire Poet Laureate Walter Butts. Walter was a good friend of ours, and we will miss him greatly.

Sail around the world in a weekend with Rime of the Ancient Underwriter!

Rime of the Ancient Underwriter cover

Ever think to yourself, "I wish I could just get away from it all?"

Jim Salmon did much more than think these words in 2000 when he left his job as an insurance underwriter and embarked on a nineteen-month trip around the world. Rime of the Ancient Underwriter is his humorous and engaging personal account of the journey on board the Picton Castle, out of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. The world voyage was the subject of a popular, sixteen-part series on Canadian cable television called Tall Ship Chronicles.

The author weathered storms at sea and stormy relations aboard ship, tramped through a steamy Panamanian jungle, climbed the rarified summit of Kilimanjaro, and tracked wildlife on the high plains of East Africa and the Australian Outback. There are pirates and a mutiny, but mostly this account is about people, places, and the human condition as seen through the eyes of a corporate exec turned seafarer. 

This book is 50% off during April! Use this link to purchase Rime of the Ancient Underwriter at the discounted price!

Interview with Jim Salmon


How to write a good query letter

A message from Hobblebush president Sid Hall

Advice about query letters is easy to come by, it seems, but here's my two cents worth as someone on the receiving end.

Getting a query from someone who is taking a long shot on a publisher is not only a waste of time, but is annoying. So thoroughly study a publisher's books and the markets for them, not to mention their guidelines. If the book doesn't fit what they do, don't try!

I always look for three things: What's the book about? Who will want to buy this book? What credentials does the author have? Get the essential information, the genre and what the book is about right up front and then go into the rest.

Most of all, the query is a demonstration of talent. It only takes a sentence or two for an editor to see if someone knows how to write. Personally, I'm not looking for someone having slaved over the language. I'm looking for innate writing ability, devotion to writing, or experience.

It helps if the tone of your letter catches the tone of the book.  When Jim Salmon queried about his  book, in addition to a tantalizing description of his round-the-world voyage he wrote this: "One reviewer of Rime said it was '…insightful, funny, and well written.' The fact that she's my daughter did not influence her in any way." I fathomed a lot about Jim and his book from that.

Holly takes some time off from work!

All hard workers need some time off, right? We found Holly snuggling up with her feline friend Lilo while she was taking a break from copyediting. Whoever said cats and dogs can't be friends clearly hadn't met these two!

As cute as they are, we can't wait for Holly to get back from her snuggle-vacation; there's lots of work to be done around here, and it's hard for us to get everything done when we're one dog down!