Odyssey Books publishes content for Young Adults, and specializes in fantasy and sci-fi titles. Michelle Lovi, founder and publisher of Odyssey Books, shares her insights about the publishing industry.
About Odyssey Books
Who is Odyssey Books’ target audience?
We don’t have a niche target audience as we publish in a range of genres for readers 10 years and up. But anyone looking for a good story – real or imagined – can find something of interest amongst our titles.
Which range of genres does Odyssey Books focus on?
We publish fiction and narrative non-fiction, but we have done especially well in the young adult space, especially with our fantasy and sci-fi titles. That may be because we attend a lot of conventions so we can engage directly with our readers.
What are the main challenges that Odyssey Books’ editorial team experiences?
Technology can be a challenge. We work with authors all over the world and rely heavily upon online services to manage our projects and communicate with our authors. Some are more technologically savvy than others, so we have to spend a lot of time playing help desk to get them acquainted with our systems.
How does Odyssey Books’ editorial team decide which manuscripts to publish?
We have a team of readers who go through the submissions and share feedback, but the decision ultimately lies with the publisher. There is no marketing team to drive acquisitions – all decisions are made on the merit of the manuscript and the vibe we get from the author. We see publishing as a partnership between publisher and author, so it’s important that the author comes across as a good fit to join us.
Does Odyssey Books consider submissions from international authors?
We’ve published authors in Australia, New Zealand, US, UK, Canada, and South Africa. We’re excited to be able to reach an international audience as well as publish international voices.
Does Odyssey Books accept submissions from debut authors or unsolicited manuscripts?
Debut authors and unsolicited manuscripts have always been welcome. It’s how we’re able to find fresh new talent when other publishers can be risk averse and stick to the more well-known names. New authors do need a lot of guidance, but we’re hoping to build long-term relationships with them and are invested in helping them build their platform and their readership.
What prominent opportunities can Odyssey Books observe in the publishing industry?
Audiobooks appear to be the next big thing in publishing. All the industry news points to audio and podcasting being a fast growing segment of the market.
How can Odyssey Books utilize these opportunities to remain competitive?
We’re already working with a number of producers and platforms to publish our titles in audio. It’s a slow process as we’re a small team, but we’re keen to make it a part of our regular program.
Does Odyssey Books intend to collaborate with international partners in the future?
Absolutely. We’ve published one translation in-house, but there are loads of opportunities for our titles to be published in other languages and markets. We’ve also met with some local film industry people – it would be great to have some interest from the likes of Netflix as we have a few titles that would make great screen adaptations.
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