Friday, 4 May 2012

An update on my last update

I’m afraid that the news since I finally completed the manuscript for A Million Miles from Broadway just a few days ago is not encouraging.  Having already been turned down by the Canada Council, the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation informed me today of their decision not to support me.  Further to this, the only publisher that was actively considering the book has now decided to pass, saying: “A hearty congratulations on bringing this large project to completion.  Seeing the full manuscript gives me a much better sense of the book this will become than earlier exchanges we’ve had.  I wish you all the best with it, but I can say with confidence now that it’s not a project that would be well-served by our Press – it’s simply too far outside of our core mandate for scholarly books.  It will, however, be a book that will be read enthusiastically by fans of musical theatre, so I suggest finding a trade press that is adept at reaching that audience.”  Would that he were right.  Information packs on the book were sent out last month to about twenty trade publishers.  Not a single one has responded. (Three years ago, one trade publisher responded saying, “we probably couldn’t publish a book about fringe theatre or where too much space was devoted to one country (e.g. Canada) and that your book would need thoroughly to address the influence of Broadway on the musical theatre of other nations to make it a truly international overview of the subject.”  I’m not interested in writing a book about how Broadway has conquered the world – and I’m certainly not going to leave my own country out of it.) For the first time I am beginning to doubt that this book will ever be released.

On the other hand, there has been lots of support in both the theatrical and educational communities.  Some have urged me to consider self publishing. I have already gone several thousand pounds into debt over this and have absolutely no money left.  Also, I don’t believe a self-published book would be accepted as authoritative. If one of those trade publishers doesn’t come forward, I’m afraid I may have to abandon this project.

I hope I’ll have better news next time.

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