The Hot Sheet is a publishing industry email newsletter written specifically for authors. It saves you time by reporting on publishing news that’s relevant to you, as well as offering context and analysis about the industry developments that affect your career and business.
With an every-other-week schedule, The Hot Sheet doesn’t deliver breaking news, but perspective on stories likely to retain meaning for your long-term decision making. You’ll gain nuanced insights on complex issues that affect all authors, whether traditionally published or self-published.
The Hot Sheet is delivered directly to subscribers via email only every other Wednesday; an annual subscription costs $59. It was founded in 2015 by Jane Friedman and journalist Porter Anderson.
What types of stories do you cover?
Here’s a sampling of topics we’ve researched and reported on this year:
- Market trends in adult fiction and nonfiction, YA and middle grade, and how current events affect publisher acquisitions
- The legality of Audible’s Captions feature and similar moves Amazon has made in the past—successfully
- Library lending and ebooks: how publishers’ changes to licensing terms may affect sales and author earnings
- How tariffs threaten publishers’ profits
- How authors (both traditional and independent) can work effectively with independent bookstores and libraries
- How Facebook’s privacy changes will affect author marketing in the long term
- The increase in book-to-screen deals and what studios are looking for
In 2019, Jane Friedman was honored by Digital Book World as Publishing Commentator of the Year for her work on The Hot Sheet.
The Hot Sheet is a partner member of the Alliance of Independent Authors, meaning we are recognized as a trusted resource for authors.
We offer Authors Guild members a subscription discount—and Hot Sheet subscribers receive a discount on Authors Guild membership.
Why pay for news and analysis?
Quite simply, to save yourself the time and effort of sourcing and interpreting it yourself. The Hot Sheet is edited and primarily written by Jane Friedman, the former publisher of Writer’s Digest. She has 20+ years of experience in the media and publishing industry and not only knows the industry players, but understands their long histories. Jane speaks to insiders directly at conferences and through her own reporting, then offers you the 360-degree perspective on news developments and products/services that have the potential to affect your livelihood.
- If you find it difficult to keep up with the changes underway in publishing, or if you wonder who’s “right” about controversial issues, The Hot Sheet will help you make sense of what’s happening.
- You’ll learn the most relevant trends and news items for authors, in plain English, with bottom-line takeaways—often trends and news that are not covered by the major industry publications.
- Without fear of missing out, you can stop looking through comment threads or social media channels in which everyone has a conflicting opinion, and focus on your author career.
Meet the Publisher
Jane speaks at, attends, and reports on industry events.
- Since 2004, Jane has attended major book industry shows every year, including BookExpo America, Digital Book World, London Book Fair, and more.
- Jane has spoken at hundreds of writing conferences, and hears the advice and perspectives offered by agents, editors, and professional authors.
- Because of her long history in the industry, Jane has a deep network of contacts, whom she can call on for insight and information.
Jane reads all the news so you don’t have to.
- Jane reads several dozen writing and publishing industry newsletters, and sifts through the most important news items on your behalf.
- Jane subscribes to paid news sources that would cost you hundreds of dollars to receive, and cherry-picks what’s relevant for you to know.
- Jane keeps up with the most important and discussed blogs in the author community, and understands the biases and agendas of them all.
Jane has devoted her career to helping writers.
- Jane is the former publisher of Writer’s Digest and was one of the founding community members of Digital Book World. She now serves as a columnist for Publishers Weekly and is a full-time writer.
- Jane is not employed by any publisher or corporation. When a potential conflict of interest arises in any reporting for The Hot Sheet, it is clearly disclosed.
The Hot Sheet gave us the right tip at the right time.
I conduct historical research for authors and one of my clients has a lot of great story ideas, but her German publisher Random House can only publish one of her novels per year. Reading about the latest US publishing opportunities in The Hot Sheet, I sensed an opening and wrote a book pitch in English for my client. We got her literary agent on board, sent the pitch, and she got a deal right away: Her next novel will be published in the USA—a dream come true for any German author.
She shared a few of her other ideas and her new US publisher gave her 2 additional publishing contracts for 2017. They didn’t even want to see a sample text! And I’ll be conducting research for all 3 novels.
Thanks to Jane, Porter and The Hot Sheet, I knew exactly what to pitch, when, and to whom; the right tip at the right time.
—Dr. Barbara Ellermeier, historical advisor for authors, publishers and literary agents
Is there a community or comment area?
No, and it’s not an oversight.
The goal is to save your time and deliver information, not open up another water cooler. There are many other places to discuss the news.
Will your frequency ever change?
A new issue releases every other Wednesday. The Hot Sheet will never dip below this frequency. In exceptional cases, you may receive additional special issues, for stories that merit the extra coverage.
Why is it called The Hot Sheet?
In Jane’s earliest publishing days, her employer circulated a weekly “hot sheet” to keep people informed. (These were the days before email!)
The Hot Sheet focuses on developments that have the potential to make a difference to you as an author, with an explanation of why we think you should know.
What’s the price?
A subscription costs $59/year. If you’re a member of Authors Guild, you are eligible for a significant discount. Learn more.
Do you have a group rate?
Yes! Email us with information about your group, institution, or business, and we’ll quote you a bulk rate.
Do you accept advertising?
No, but The Hot Sheet does accept sponsorships. If you’re interested in being a sponsor, email us to inquire.
I have an idea or news tip for The Hot Sheet.
We love tips. Email us.
“I love The Hot Sheet! It’s up there with Publishers Lunch as my go-to for industry information. It’s witty, approachable, and informative. Highly recommended.”
“I have to be one of the hardest sells on the planet. It’s not that I’m cheap—I’m a former INC. 500 entrepreneur and MBA professor, and the way I’m able to make a living writing fiction full time is with an extreme bootstrapping mentality. My monthly expenses are virtually zero, which is why it took me a few months of thinking from every angle before I made a decision to pay for your newsletter so I would keep receiving it. For me to add even one penny to my monthly expenses, the product or service I’m paying for has to offer extreme, over-the-top value and not be available from any other source. (That’s exactly what I offer my fiction readers and why I’m able to make a living doing it.) Staying on top of the publishing industry, and particularly indie publishing, is something I must do, and to be able to do it for five dollars a month is truly a bargain.”