I have had a few people ask me how to go about getting published. I am both touched and astounded that people ask me these things because I have only just got my foot in the door. I am not a professional, at least not yet. I am not an editor, although I think I would be pretty damn good at it, for others, not myself (I’ll explain that in a future bout of advice.) I am not a publisher. I am not an agent. I went to college over 20-years ago for writing and never continued with it. I picked it back up when I turned 40. Somehow, miraculously, the stars aligned and karma kicked me in the direction of my publisher. It only took me a year to find him and that was quite by accident (I’ll tell that story one day, too.) Anyway, that isn’t the point of this post, just a lead up to it; mypointis, I thought I would share some of the answers I have given people over the last year. I hope it helps you along your journey. I don’t claim to know how to get published, I can only share the things I have experienced in the world of writing.
I recommend not sending out your manuscript unless you are confident in its completion. Seriously. If it isn’t finished, do NOT send it out. If you are happy with it, put it away and don’t look at it for 3-6 months, send out your queries during that time. Write something else. Don’tlookatit. Send more queries. Expect rejection. Isaiddon’tlookatit. Keep sending the manuscript out. Areyoupeeking? Send it out some more. Be patient. Leavethemanuscriptalone. UNLESS you get some really good advice in one of your rejection letters, and you feel in your heart that the changes they recommend work for you and your story, just… give… yourself… space… from… it. You will NOT be able to alight fresh eyes on your own story if you keep looking at it. Did I mention to expect rejection? Because there is a high probability that you will get a lot of rejection. Get used to it. Isawthat! What was I saying? Oh yeah, rejection. Nobody likes rejection but I half suspect that we writers feed off of it. The nature of submitting manuscripts is to receive rejection. Let it be your fuel. That’s my advice. Hey! Isaidstoppeeking. One of the hardest things you will do is not look at your manuscript after it is complete. Guess what? It will not matter how many times you have edited it, you will Always, Every Time, find mistakes, or weird syntax, or a better way of wording something, or repetition. At some point, you MUST stop looking at that damn thing. You’re looking at it, aren’t you? Yeah, that’s what I thought. Put the manuscript down and back away… slowly.