Tuesday, May 10, 2011
A Report from the Trenches
Like Josh noted, many authors can't properly place themselves in the market. Almost every single manuscript that I was pitched was described as a thriller. When I looked at the writing sample, it was clear to me that several were actually cozies or soft boiled. I spent a good deal of time talking about subgenres and giving examples.
One question that surprised me was "do you buy on proposal?" Ummm... no. Not unless you have a serious body of work under your belt and I therefore the author can deliver a finished and acceptable manuscript. I would certainly make an offer on a proposal from Lee Child, for example! Or Maggie Sefton. :)
Another question - "do you have an assistant who pre-reads for you?" Good Lord. After I managed to pick myself off the floor and wipe the tears from my eyes, I simply said, "No. No, I don't."
I also extensively explain the publishing process, from the submission to the finished product hitting the market. Oh, I probably forgot one or two of the seemingly endless steps, but I am fairly certain the folks walked away with a little more understanding of the amount of work that goes into publishing a book.