2011 – The Year in Review

by Steve Laube

It is a good exercise to reflect on the past year. Count the blessings, reflect on the hard lessons, and remember the good times.

The highlight was bringing both Tamela Hancock Murray and Karen Ball into the agency in late May. I was and continue to be very excited about the talent and work these two are doing on behalf of our clients.

That hard work had visible results as we secured sixty-four (64) new book contracts that will cover 113 new books. That works out to a new contract every four business days.

There were some challenges with three authors having their contracts cancelled for a variety of reasons. This is never easy, but it can happen.

Keeping track of the blistering changes in the industry would give any sane person whiplash. Amazon’s surge and Border’s demise gave many of us pause. I read over 150 pages of industry related material each week in an attempt to keep up. I like to joke that an agent’s job is to keep track 24/7 because the industry can change on Tuesday. This was proven last month when two major personnel changes were announced on the same day at two different firms…and that day was Tuesday.

The biggest publishing news event was the sale of Thomas Nelson to HarperCollins. (click here for my thoughts on that event.)

Our client list grew exponentially with the addition of Tamela and Karen. We now represent over 150 authors. It is an honor and a privilege to serve such a talented group.

We redesigned the web site early in the year which created the infrastructure to ramp up our blogging efforts. Having three agents allows us to share the blogging load so each person takes one day while I also collect weekly news articles and find something lighthearted to share each Friday. The number of regular readers has tripled since mid-year.

I spoke at seven different writer’s events around the country and also attended my 30th consecutive ICRS convention in July.

On a personal note my wife and I celebrated our 30th Anniversary and we took an Alaskan cruise along with my brothers and their wives. What made it even greater was being able to watch our daughter perform 14 times in 10 days since she was one of the dancers on board the Sea Princess. We topped off our trip by visiting my parents to celebrate my father’s 90th birthday. Then later in the year we celebrated the 100th birthday of my wife’s grandmother.

Here is wishing you all a happy new year!

6 Responses to 2011 – The Year in Review

  1. Carrie Turansky January 2, 2012 at 7:40 am #

    Sounds like it’s been a great year for you and your agency! Scott and I are glad to be among the 150+ authors you represent. Thanks for staying on top of all the changes and looking out for our best interests. It was great to see you at ACFW and talk with you there. We are looking forward to 2012 and what’s ahead for all of us.
    Best wishes and Happy New Year!
    Carrie

  2. Casey Herringshaw January 2, 2012 at 10:01 am #

    It’s posts such as these that give me hope! Sure, we hit our struggles, but God is always faithful.

    And I’m so glad we have industry professionals such as yourself who give and give to make sure we are in the “write” place. Even for those who are not your clients. So thank you! And happy new year. :)

  3. Debra E Marvin January 2, 2012 at 10:07 am #

    That’s pretty incredible when pulled altogether like that. And on the personal side–what a blessing to have such memorable family events.

  4. Lynette Eason January 2, 2012 at 10:11 am #

    What a great recap! I’m so honored to be a part of this agency. Thanks for all of the great work the three of you do to keep your authors’ careers on track! I’m excited to see what God’s going to do in 2012 with all of us. Happy New Year!

  5. Peter DeHaan January 2, 2012 at 3:35 pm #

    A contract every fours days is mind-boggling to me — and an incredible accomplishment. I don’t know how you can keep everything straight )or find time to blog!)

    Congratulations!

  6. Anita Mae January 2, 2012 at 5:20 pm #

    Congratulations on a wonderful year. Your agency went through an exciting change and I’m filled with anticipation of seeing what’s in store for you this coming year.

    I’m also enriched by the experience of meeting each of you at the ACFW conference in St Louis. Your confidence and professionalism is reassuring in this quickly changing industry.

    I wish you a blessed new year, rich in friendship, new discoveries and whatever else is on your wishlist for 2013.

    Anita Mae.

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