I know what you're thinking, why do I need to read about how to be accepted? Isn't that the goal? Isn't that the point of my existence right now? I should be able to handle this one.
Well, as it turns out there are several situations you might find yourself in after being accepted that you are not prepared for. So, we decided to share some of those with you so you can prepare for that glorious day and all it will hopefully entail.
This is the first in a three-post series regarding submitting to and interacting with publishers, agents, or another organization. Even if you’re an indie author, you will still have to submit your work—book reviewers, book awards, anthologies, etc. all involve a submission process. Putting your work out there is tough, no matter how seasoned an author you might be, but there are still rules to this game.
This is the first follow up to the 50 Shades of Submission post by V.S. Holmes from last week. I wanted to jump in and get the rejection part out of the way for two reasons, one, it's not nearly as exciting as acceptance and two, we all have to go through it. Writing and publishing is not easy and putting your heart and soul on the line to be judged by another human being is no walk in the park. I was so worried about rejection in the early years of my writing that I actually never expected to be accepted and just resigned myself to it.
There are many reasons to use a pen name some are personal while others are smart career choices. Have you ever googled your name? How many people with your exact name are out there? For me this was the initial catalyst into my decision to create a pen name. I am the only one. When I google myself, married or maiden name, I am the only one who pops up. This can be useful when trying to build a brand but its also a bit scary. I have two kids to think about and I don't really want people being able to find out where I live or other personal information from a simple online search.
If you missed Part 1 click here!
It started out as barbed remarks. A competitor messaged me, saying hi, how was I doing? My picture looked so nice! He would rather lose to me than anyone else. He’d read my sample, and honestly my writing wasn’t very deep. I used phrases like “giggling”. Not very mature, or, apparently, good writing.
As you're getting ready to publish, you've probably started hearing about ARCs. Advanced Reader Copies are something the traditional publishers use to get early reviews.
Entering contests held by publishing houses can be a great way to get your foot in the publishing door. Here is the story of how author, Amy Spitzfaden, did just that with her debut novel Untold.
When I got the idea for Untold I had the feeling, “this is one I think I can go all the way with.” I’d had the thought before (“I’ll publish this one, I know I will!”), but there was something special about Untold. Maybe it was because it was the first novel I’d started drafting that had a strong focus on plot, instead of solely characters/setting, or maybe it was because I was staring down the barrel of my last year of college and needed a plan for what to do after. Whatever the reason, I picked up the idea and ran with it.
Many authors get up in arms about piracy and Digital Rights Management (DRM). It’s understandable. We worked our butts off for this art and we deserve payment. This post is not about the pay-freelancers-for-their-work fiasco. I whole heartedly think magazines and their online counterparts should pay those providing their content. This is about the tentative relationship between piracy, authors, and exposure. You won’t see me choosing DRM, patrolling piracy sites for my book, or stamping my review copies.
We had an interesting conversation recently on the Facebook group I moderate for indie authors. Someone remarked – as though it would be a shock -- that they would rather go out and do something with friends than stay in and read a book alone. A few of my peers agreed with her (including myself), while many claimed they’d opt for a book over social functions any day.
You made it this far! Awesome! You've revised until you hated your entire book, chosen a cover designer and gone through the pain and eventual joy of the editing process! Give yourself a pat on the back! You've earned it. Now, it's time for you to decide where, when, and how you want to publish. I will talk about print on demand later on but for now, lets talk retailers. The place that will sell your book.
The first name that comes into most new author's minds is Amazon. Amazon is a wonderful place for readers and authors alike, but they are also tricky. You, in theory, can gain traction by joining Kindle Unlimited but with that little white box of possible downloads, comes an exclusivity clause. You may not sell a digital copy of your book anywhere else but on Amazon.
On the plus side, you can always give it a try for three months. This is recommended for new authors but in my personal experience it hasn't made a huge difference. How much it pays off seems to depend on genre, so do your homework to see if it's worth it.
Here are the 5 main reasons you should look into other options:
Marissa Frosch is the head of marketing at Amphibian Press and also writes under the pseudonym Cameron J Quinn. The first of her Starsboro Series is due out on January 16th. She can be found on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, her blog and her website.
There a lot of steps to go through before pressing that ever coveted Publish button! There are also a few things to think about before you choose where to publish. Click here for a free 30 minute publishing consultation.
If you're ready to edit we can help! Click here for more information.