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Have Question about Publishing. Please help! : FAQs • Writing Forum | WritersDigest.com

Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Frequently asked questions. Go HERE and read the first thread.
triplethreat99
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Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby triplethreat99 » Thu Apr 12, 2012 3:16 pm

Hello fellow writers, I have a question that I cant find a clear answer for. I appreciate if someone could provide an answer. I am about to finish my first manuscript and have been researching on what to do to get published. I read that most publishers (not all) require writers to submit through an agent. However, in Mr Orson Scott Card's book, How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy, he states the following: "For your first novel, you don't need an agent until you've got a contract offer from a publisher."
Im confused :? . Since this is my first novel, should I just not look for an agent and submitt to publishers. It seems that that would make it harder to get noticed. Especially since I am totally unknown. Please , any help is appreciated. Sincerely, Cesar Gonzalez

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louiseh87
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Re: Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby louiseh87 » Thu Apr 12, 2012 4:09 pm

Louise :)

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pls
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Re: Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby pls » Thu Apr 12, 2012 5:05 pm

César, you need an agent to try to get your manuscript noticed by a publisher.

However … nowadays the average agent will receive around 250 manuscripts a week. Of the 10,000 or so received per year, perhaps a half dozen will be accepted for representation, and then maybe one or two will be accepted by a publisher. Or at least that's what I've read. Good luck!
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mammamaia
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Re: Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby mammamaia » Fri Apr 13, 2012 10:31 am

i agree that it's best to have an agent... and of course it's a vital necessity, if you hope to nail one of the biggies that don't accept unagented queries or submissions...

however, there are small indie publishers that do accept unagented queries and will take a look at a new writer's work, if it interests them... that's especially true if what you have to offer fits one of the 'niche' presses' needs... such as with the gay, lesbian, new age, horror, erotica, etc. genres...

so, it's not an 'agents or nothing' issue... more a case of what it is you have and finding whoever's willing to look at it...

if you take that direct-to-publishers route, once you have an offer from one [or more], it'll be a lot easier to snag an agent... and with an agent to negotiate for you, you're almost sure to get a better deal...
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Crono91
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Re: Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby Crono91 » Sat Apr 14, 2012 10:39 am

The biggest problem you need to worry about--when querying to publishers--is if they reject you, it will be a lot harder for an agent to re-contact them on your behalf. Publishing is a game, and you need to know the best way to play it for your style.
Be proud of your mistakes when they form from blinding passion. But now edit them.

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mammamaia
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Re: Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby mammamaia » Sun Apr 15, 2012 8:38 am

ALL 6 e-book collections of my work are FREE...email me with "want free books" in subject line and include a message.

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janemaldives
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Re: Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby janemaldives » Tue Apr 24, 2012 3:55 am

To get an agent which is the preferred/authentic route could take you years and then a few more years before they find you a publisher (unless you are the next big thing).

We had a debate here recently about the likes of us going the e-publishing with Amazon, Lulu, SmashWords, Barnes & Noble, Create Space, etc, etc. A lot of people do that to at least see some result; sometime the books are free or sold for a couple of dollars. Of course then you are competing with masses of other first offerings. A handful of people have sold a couple of million books but they are the rare exception (Amanda Hocking, Victorine LIeske, HP Mallory).

kkmetz7
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Re: Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby kkmetz7 » Wed Jun 27, 2012 8:08 am

I think I am in the same situation as triplethreat who started this discussion originally. I am just about to finish writing my first book, but have no idea what to do next. I have done a lot of searching on the internet, but I am finding it hard to sift through everything for a straight answer.

Am I correct in assuming these are my options: 1)send manuscript to small publishers that do not require a literary agent, 2) submit my manuscript to some literary agents, 3) create the ebook myself and sell it online through something like amazon. Are those my only options? And does anyone recommend one over the other? And does anyone have a good resource related to this topic to share?

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Re: Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby shadowwalker » Wed Jun 27, 2012 1:42 pm

"It seems rather like wanting to be ... a writer, rather than wanting to write. It should be a by-product, not a thing in itself. Otherwise, it's just an ego trip." - Roger Zelazny

It's really not that hard. Just tell me a story.

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pls
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Re: Have Question about Publishing. Please help!

Postby pls » Wed Jun 27, 2012 4:38 pm

Something that I cannot stress enough is to have your manuscript proofread and edited before you start sending it out, preferably by a professional, even if you have to pay for the service. I've seen too many novels, both self-published e-books and those put out by large publishing firms, that are rife with errors. I don't know about other readers, but when I sample an e-book and find errors on the sample pages, I don't buy it, no matter how enticing the blurb is.
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