Lipstick & Danger

My Blog

Choosing A Publisher

Recently I threw my hat into the ring
of Savvy Authors. It is a terrific website with tips and workshops for writers.
In February writers were invited to pitch their novel to as many of the 30
participating publishers. I chose 17 after looking at their descriptions and
the kinds of stories they were seeking. The trick was to pitch your work using
only three sentences. Then I waited.

Out of the 17 pitches, seven
publishers actually wanted to either see the first three chapters or a full
manuscript. Needless to say, not only was I excited, but I also felt panic get
a strangle hold on my confidence.  Again,
I waited.

Then I opened my email to find out I
had three publishers that liked my manuscript enough to offer me a contract. (I
also opened a few that said “thanks, but no thanks.”) So then I had to decide
which one was best for me. This has been a learning experience. Here is my method
of madness.

Read the contract. Do you have
Ask questions. Do they answer in a
timely fashion?
Research the company.
Look at some of the other books they have
published. Like or dislike?
If possible talk to some of the
authors about their satisfaction level.
Go to the Absolute Water Cooler to
see what others are saying about the company. CAUTION: I noticed some of the
same people complain on every site.
Ask published authors in your writing
group for advice. Their experiences and contacts are valuable to your decision.
What services are they offering to
make you successful?
Are they interested in seeing
something else you have written?
10  And last but not least; what are the royalties
paid to you?

I’m sure as time goes on, the list
will grow. This is all very new and exciting right now. Making mistakes is part
of the growing process. I would love to hear any other advice from you before I
sign on the dotted line.

0 Responses

  1. Congrats! Can't wait to see who you choose. One thing I like about my choice of publishers, the editor seems really friendly. And I get prompt e-mails.

  2. Congratulations on the offers and on taking the time to investigate the publishers. Have you checked Brenda Hiatt's Show me the Money? It shows average advances/royalties/payouts for different houses.

  3. Great list and I absolutely agree! I especially like your point of asking the publisher if you have questions. I was so impressed at the prompt and friendly reply of my publisher when I had several questions. Congratulations on the offer and Best of Luck!! Barb Bettis

  4. Fantastic! I'm thrilled for you and can't wait to see which houses offered you a contract!

    I'd add to go to their site and look at the cover art. Covers are so important and if they look shoddy or self-pubbed, I'd pass.
    It's also telling if authors use them more than once.

    Everything seems to be happening really fast for you! Good luck.

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