Skip to main content

Weeding through Publishers with a Fine-Edged Machete

In a previous post, I submitted a link to a list of publishers at http://myperfectpitch.com. It's a great resource that seems to be kept up to date. You can also narrow down the list by searching genre, which I did.

The returned list of approx. 35 fantasy publishers included companies from the UK, Canada and the US. Almost all were active, and were accepting submissions. Awesome stuff. So, the next step was for me to match myself to the perfect publisher for my book.

Clicking the links took me directly to the submissions page, which is very convenient. This page always provides all of the important details for authors on word count, formatting, submission requirements etc. However, I quickly learned that I needed to look at the publisher's entire site in detail for a number of reasons listed below:

Book Covers

  • cheap looking novel covers (cartoonish)
  • out-dated looking novel covers (1950/60 style)
  • novel covers with poor layout design (basics of design elements no evident)
  • female protagonists displayed sexually (4 out of 5 novels and fifth female was 1/2 size of male, slung unconscious and helpless in his arms)
Books Published

  • minimal number of published books (even less in fantasy category)
  • books not available on Amazon.ca
  • books formatted in publisher's version of an ereader (limiting)
  • books with almost no reviews on Amazon.ca or Goodreads (easy for a publisher to do)
  • books with poor coverage in media (see news page of site)
  • books not compatible with my novel (I really, really wanted to submit to Arthur Levine (publisher of Harry Potter), however "The Precious Quest" is not a good match with what Levine publishes.
Rights and Royalties
  • 30% of ebooks? Not enough to sign away all rights.
  • 50% of ebooks? Better, but still want print too.
  • 15% of print? I don't think so! Consider this. If the publisher sells 1000 books, I will earn $150. If I self publish at Mill City Press, they take 0% royalty once I pay set-up and printing costs which work out to approx $4 per book. If I sell my books for $14, I get $10 per book, which means I would only have to sell 15 books to get the same $ as the publisher who offers 15%. If I put my book on Amazon, I'd have to pay trade discounts of 30-55%, but even then, I would only have to sell 30 books to make $150. Read more about royalty calculations here http://www.millcitypress.net/book-publishing-royalties-compared
Publisher Experience
  • Many, many new publishers
  • Many publishers half my age (I sound like my mother)
  • Many publishers with little experience in publishing
  • Many publishers with a lot of traditional publishing experience but no knowledge or acceptance of social media, the 21st century ... etc.
Sad to say. Not one of the 35 publishers matched up to me or my novel manuscript. Now what? Back to google searches. And next? I need to go find a discussion group that is talking about publishers. This is just too complicated to do alone.




    Comments

    Popular posts from this blog

    How to Use MS OneNote to Organize Writing Research and Novel Outlines for Writers

    Let’s Get Organized 
    Writers take a gazillion notes.I don’t have to tell you this, because you know all about it. You also know how difficult it is to organize notes, search through paper notes, and sometimes even find all the notes you've written. 

    In this day and age, going digital is the best way to keep track of your notes. If organized properly, digital notes are sortable, searchable, editable, accessible from anywhere, and light as a feather to carry around.

    In this blog, I'm going to show you how to be note-efficient.
    ____________________________________________________

    The following is an excerpt from "Technology #WritingTips for Writers". First 100 subscribers athttp://www.cherylcowtan.comget a free copy at book launch. _____________________________________________________
    The first step in getting note-efficient is finding the right software. For writers, finding a software that will meet all of our needs is like trying to pick a toothpick from a sea urchin... …

    Evocative Author Interviews - 40 Authors were asked "If your best friend left her diary at your house, would you snoop for writing ideas?" And they answered...

    Where do authors get their ideas? Do you have an author friend? Do you ever feel like a science experiment around him/her? Well there might be a reason for that. Most authors are very in tune with people. They might not like them much, but they spend a lot of time observing them. This helps authors come up with characterization for their novels. 

    But how far would an author really go? Over 40 writers participated in this question: If your best friend left her diary at your house, would you snoop for writing ideas? The result... Be careful where you leave your diary!

    Guess how many would do it... and gladly - anything in the name of idea gathering. Some would just do it for fun!
    Author Name If your best friend left her diary at your house, would you snoop for writing ideas?Which of these authors’ novels/writings should you start with?Cheryl R Cowtan



    Carmen Madison TL Travis Sheri-Lynn Marean Liz Iavorschi-Brain Vic Watts S.M. Carrière


    Celeste Hollister

    How to Edit Overused Words in Your Novel Manuscript

    Wordle is probably the easiest tool for finding overused words in your novel, because you just paste your entire manuscript into Wordle and wait for the results.
    Wordle creates an image of the most often used words in the text, increasing the font size of a word based on how many times it was used. The Pride and Prejudice Wordle is interesting as a comment on societal manners at the time it was written by Jane Austen (Mr, Miss, Mrs). The Wordle above is from my current manuscript The Fergus She. If you notice, the word "Angus" is in the largest font. The visual  is telling me I used "Angus" more than any other word, which is good because he's the hot highlander my protagonist, Rachel, is lusting for. Where is Rachel's name? you might ask. The Fergus She is written in first person POV, from the point of view of Rachel, so you won't see her name in large font.
    In the Wordle graphic, the next font size (after Angus) are words like "back", "…