Monday, August 15, 2011

The Song Remains The Same

This has been discussed in the past, but sometimes refresher courses are necessary, if only for the sake of hammering it in.

The publishing industry is very interesting right now. In moving forward into a new generation of e-readers and royalty-based online publishers, unagented authors now enjoy opportunities and even benefits over those who submit their work to larger presses. Sites like Amazon that pioneered e-reader technology, and while many mainstream houses are trending toward ebooks, the time has never been better for authors without publishing experience to dip their toes in the water. That’s how I got here. I had absolutely zero experience publishing, but I loved writing and being an actual published author was pretty much my main ambition. So I submitted, and I got accepted.

I was one of the lucky ones. You should never expect it to be that easy. Just because publishing houses are opening their doors to unknowns and unrepresenteds doesn’t mean you’re in. Quality still matters. Story still matters. Ensuring your story fits their house standards and expectations still matters. A rejection doesn’t necessarily mean your writing isn’t good, rather the story itself isn’t right for that publisher. Right now, the trend seems to be more toward form rejection letters rather than a lengthy explanation, which saves face for the publisher if the author gets belligerent. However, should the acquisitions editor take the time to explain how or why certain aspects of your manuscript didn’t work, take it, absorb upon it, and reference it when you next submit. Also, thank them for their time and consideration.

What works for Publisher A won’t necessarily reflect what works for Publisher B, C, and D. Some houses specialize in GLBT, where others have an emphasis in ménage, BDSM, interracial romance, paranormal, and so forth. Look at the material that has been accepted and do your homework. Read books published by the place you’d most like to see your work. And most importantly, even if you do all these things and the publisher still rejects you, don’t lose heart. Taste is subjective, and larger e-pubs typically have more than one editor reading new submissions, and different people react differently to different manuscripts.

No matter what, don’t take a rejection personally. To you, your manuscript is your sweat, blood, and tears. To a publisher, it’s just the next in a long line of submissions.


KaceyHammell said...

Really needed to hear this 2day. Thnx Rosalie !!

Rosalie Stanton said...

You're very welcome, Kacey. I'm glad to have helped in some small way. :)

Post a Comment