Sunday, September 9, 2007

What does it take to get published? pt 1 of X

I've been researching this all day (in between watching NFL games).
There seemes to be 3 ways of getting published:
  1. Send a manuscript to a publisher.
  2. Find an agent
  3. Publish it yourself.

The generally accepted "best practice" seems to be #2, since many publishers have stopped accepting direct submissions, and self-publishing is pretty hard and unrewarding.

The first step in submitting a manuscript is to format it. When I "correctly" formatted Dawn's Rise, it went from 499 pages to a whopping 649. I have no idea how many printed pages this converts to but it's a hell of a lot to print out. I may have to ship the thing in two envelopes.

Now I need to find an agent...preferably one in NY, and of course I live near Seattle, so I can't just knock on doors. So my project for this week is to come up with a list of potential agents and figure out how to get the story to them.

I also could use another couple months of work on the story. But just like my characters, I don't have all the time in the world, and I've decided to just go for it as is.


  1. Most publishers do not accept unsolicited submissions, so an agent is the way to go. A book like Writer's Market has tips on the submission process (how to write a good cover letter, etc) and how to find the right agent for your book. There is probably a version of the book geared towards Sci Fi too, which would be even more specific.
    Best of luck!

  2. We've all been there! I once wrote 100 letters of intro to agents with not one reply!!
    I decided to self-publish. Have you seen

  3. I am somewhat new to this blogging business, so if it is bad form to comment on an older post then accept my apologies.

    I'd just like to add a fourth alternative to your list.

    4. Submit to small, independent presses.

    Many of these presses are interested in alternative fiction, happily accept un-agented submissions, will not require you to send them a ream of paper and will not sit on your work for six months and then reject it with a form letter.

    The downside is you will not get rich. But on the other hand you will have publication cred should you decide to approach on of the big New York publishing houses later on.

    Just a thought.

    Suzanne Francis

  4. This is strangely the most commented post on my site.
    Thank you for the suggestion. It's a definite alternative.
    A published author also suggested that I go to SF convention and hob-nob with editors...I might make that number 5.

    One of these days I'll need to post pt 2 of X...


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