I created a spreadsheet of places to submit my would-be novel to recently. I put all the big publishing houses on there and several mid-sized houses along with a couple of small ones. I didn’t go overboard, I just put up a dozen or so. Putting them all together like that, complete with notes that indicate their submission guidelines made for interesting reading. I learned a few things that way.
Tor is famous for it, but others that I thought requested agented submissions only a few years ago said no such thing now. I wonder if a lot of new talent is forgoing traditional publishing in hopes of making a name for themselves doing it on their own? Those traditional publishers are making it a bit easier perhaps?
That one confuses me, as I thought it was more or less accepted that when you submitted a novel to a house that you would have it at other places as well. Again, I wonder if this is the publisher trying to prevent a bidding war, those rare occasions when an agent makes a first sale for an author sometimes that novel will have received offers from numerous houses, and really drive that advance way up – I don’t think they want to do that. I guess it’s the price you pay for dealing with a large corporation.
Anyone who spends more than a few minutes looking at imprints of large houses knows this. But what I didn’t expect to see is imprints for the same parent company that appear to be covering the exact same genre… what gives? Look at DAW and ACE for example. Different editors, different submission guidelines, same address, same market. Weird.
Seriously. Print and send. I can think only that they believe it will dissuade people who aren’t serious, I guess. I wanted to save money the last time I printed out a hard copy of my novel to do an editing pass so I went to Staples to have them do it… they charged $30. I told them nevermind. I’ll do it myself.
I could pay $7 and send it to Lulu or something and get my copy that way. Complete with a cool cover. Regardless, it’s stupid to insist on getting a hard copy. When I’m waffling on what I want to do with my stuff, making me jump through all these submission hoops gets tiring, especially if I can see no logic in it.
But I do have options, I may submit first to the places that have the simplest submission guidelines… then wait, and wait, and wait. Until finally, after another six months or so I get another rejection… You know, it could take years to make the rounds that way.
So I’ve been formulating a plan. I have two universes I will play in. One will be a universe set aside for attempts at traditional publishing and the second will be reserved for my self-publishing efforts. I’ll try to put my best foot forward for both, but still keep them separate.
I’ll let you know how that goes.