Posts Tagged ‘25 Ways to Not Get Published’

25 Ways to Not Get Published: Post 3

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010

Happy Thursday!  Are you ready for the third way to not get published today?

To remind you, the first was: Demand no less than a six-figure advance in your query letter. Your book is brilliant and if Big Publishing House isn’t willing to pay, then there’s no need to submit a single page.

The second way was: Ask friends/critique partners or fellow authors for feedback on your project, and then dismiss their concerns. Everyone is wrong! Head-hopping is okay. Plenty of authors do it. And who cares if you start every paragraph with the same word (“Then…”)? That’s the way you want it. Your baby is perfect and if they can’t see that, then they’re blind.

Now, the third:

Let the editor know how desperate you are to sell to her by including phrases like the following in your query: “I’ll do anything”, “If you don’t buy it, I’ll commit suicide” or the ever popular, “My kids need shoes/medicine/an operation”.

There are no such things as Pity-Contracts. Making an editor feel sorry for you or guilty isn’t going to make her buy your book. It’s just going to peeve her. Editors contract books they are convinced will make their employer–the publishing house–money. Period. They may like a book–even, love a book–and still choose not to contract it. An editor may like you and still choose not to contract your book. It’s nothing personal, and to make it personal is a big mistake.

Repeat after me: writing is an art; publishing is a business.

25 Ways to NOT Get Published: Post 2

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Happy Wednesday! I thought I’d go ahead and post the second way to not get published today. To remind you, the first was: Demand no less than a six-figure advance in your query letter. Your book is brilliant and if Big Publishing House isn’t willing to pay, then there’s no need to submit a single page.

The second way to not get published:

Ask friends/critique partners or fellow authors for feedback on your project, and then dismiss their concerns. Everyone is wrong! Head-hopping is okay. Plenty of authors do it. And who cares if you start every paragraph with the same word (“Then…”)? That’s the way you want it. Your baby is perfect and if they can’t see that, then they’re blind.

Repeat after me–No one’s work is perfect. You can expect people to be pointing out imperfections from the beginning. Critique partners. Agents. Editors. Copy editors. Reviewers. Readers. Believe me, having a book published can be a very humbling experience. Do yourself a favor, if you can’t handle criticism, keep your writing locked up on your computer, in a desk drawer, wherever. Don’t show it to another human being until you’re prepared to hear it isn’t perfect.

25 Ways to NOT Get Published: Post 1

Thursday, May 20th, 2010

New authors are often looking for that “magic formula”, a surefire way to land that first deal. The bad news: I haven’t discovered that yet. But I do have a little bit of good news. I have discovered a few surefire ways to NOT get published. I thought I’d share them in descending order, posting one at a time. I hope this series will provide you with a few chuckles,and some thought-provoking truths.

Okay, so here we go. The twenty-fifth way to NOT get published, and the lesson you can learn from it:

25. Demand no less than a six-figure advance in your query letter. Your book is brilliant and if the Big Publishing House isn’t willing to pay, then there’s no need to submit a single page.

The reality:

There’s no need to talk about advances until after an editor has made an offer. Any talk of money in the query stage is like slapping a big, ugly sign on your forehead that says IGNORANT NEWBIE. That’s not to say your query is guaranteed to immediately go in the circular file if you mention money in a query letter, but there’s a good chance it will. Why stack the odds against you–which are already towering–even higher?

(This series was previously published on www.tawnytaylor.blogspot.com)