December 14, 2019, 04:50:46 AM

Author Topic: Adventures in Writing  (Read 66057 times)

Offline CameronJohnston

Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #75 on: December 02, 2015, 10:16:38 AM »
I received a rejection  from an agent last week after they called in my full manuscript. They liked my novel, but didn't feel passionate enough to represent it. Lots of nice comments though.
Onwards!

Very tempted by Angry Robot and Gollancz open submissions...but may try more agents instead.

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Offline xiagan

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Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #76 on: December 02, 2015, 11:10:07 AM »
I received a rejection  from an agent last week after they called in my full manuscript. They liked my novel, but didn't feel passionate enough to represent it. Lots of nice comments though.
Onwards!

Very tempted by Angry Robot and Gollancz open submissions...but may try more agents instead.
Sorry to hear! But that was at least not totally negative.
Why not do both? Open doors and agents?
"Sire, I had no need of that hypothesis." (Laplace)

Offline CameronJohnston

Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #77 on: December 02, 2015, 01:01:47 PM »
Well, my interpretation of this is that is when an experienced agent accepts your manuscript they will usually help you lick it into better shape, maybe ask you to fix a few issues, before submitting it to publishers, and as it comes from an agent you stand a better chance of them paying more attention to it.

So, If I get an agent after being rejected by two open sub publishers, the publishers are not going to want to see that particular manuscript again, even if it's since been improved on.
At least, that's what is on my mind right now.

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Offline tebakutis

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Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #78 on: December 02, 2015, 03:03:07 PM »
So, If I get an agent after being rejected by two open sub publishers, the publishers are not going to want to see that particular manuscript again, even if it's since been improved on.
At least, that's what is on my mind right now.

Yup, that's the hazard of accepting open submissions windows. I've heard the same thing from people in my writer's group who have agents - some agents don't care if you hit a few open subs before talking to them, but others may be hesitant to take on your manuscript, even if they like it, if you've already submitted it to too many publishers. Their chances with those publishers are already closed.

On the flip side, if you DO get interest in an open call (say, you submitted to Angry Robot and they wanted to buy your book) you can then actually query an agent with a book sale already in hand ... basically, offering the agent a free slice of the pie to come in and represent your book (and hopefully future ones). So assuming they have the space in their client list, it's an easy win for them and they're more likely to take you on, which helps you in future book sales.

So, there's plusses and minuses to submitting during open submission periods. Also, open calls tend to happen among smaller press targets which, although they are great, probably wouldn't be the first targets of an agent anyway (they'd hit the Big Five first).

Angry Robot actually gave me some positive comments recently on my espionage SF novel - basically, their rejection boiled down too "It's not exactly an Angry Robot book, but we think it will sell". Which was encouraging to hear. Of course, this is the same book that 18 agents have already passed on without even requesting sample chapters (despite all the positive feedback from advance readers and other published authors) so... you never know.

Offline tebakutis

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Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #79 on: December 02, 2015, 03:19:40 PM »
When someone says "We just need a few more days" and then two weeks pass without more info, is it time to get out your harpoon or do you gnaw at your knuckles some more?

Since they've already published it...with no contract or payment...I think it's entirely acceptable to be pissed off about it now. 'Paid upon publication' does not equal paid weeks afterwards. As it's now December I'd email them again, being polite but firm.  At the end of the day, you are perfectly within your rights to report the magazine for copyright infringement on Amazon (which they are wide open to without a returned contract, or indeed, payment).

This is a a tough one. Like Cameron points out, you are certainly within your rights to be annoyed. That said, there are always other possibilities. Sometimes, spam filters may be catching your e-mails, meaning the publisher never received them. Try sending from a different e-mail (if you have one) to see if that gets around it. Also, it doesn't hurt to try alternative contact methods, if they are available (like Facebook) to see if that gets their attention. Sometimes, they just get buried in e-mails.

I had this very same situation occur with a token press that published one of my older stories earlier this year. They accepted the story, sent me the contract, and so on. Payment was due upon publication, but it got delayed for a good while (as did the book) and several e-mails (about one a month) were lost into the void. Ultimately, after three months, the publisher did pay out (again, it wasn't pro rate) so I did get everything resolved. I tried to be patient throughout, and ultimately, I feel I made the right call.

Though it's not ideal, many token markets are running on a shoestring budget - it may just be one or two people financing the zine through their own money which means yes, they do run into cases where they can't pay immediately. It's part and parcel of working with them. As with most professional contacts, I think it's best to keep your cool and say polite until it seems like you absolutely will not be paid, at which point you should absolutely consider going the route Cameron suggested (since the book is sold through Amazon, you actually have recourse, where if it was just an online zine, there wouldn't be much you could do).

Offline JRTroughton

Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #80 on: December 02, 2015, 06:44:25 PM »
Not the same publisher or story as my last moan, heh! Thanks for your thoughts though.

It's a different short story mag. I queried as per the advice on their site after having no response for 2 months. They said the story was now with the final editor and they just needed a few more days. It's now been over two weeks. I don't want to be pushy, but... I want to know.

Offline tebakutis

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Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #81 on: December 22, 2015, 04:40:20 AM »
With a few days off work, we're back to cold querying! I recently received some encouraging feedback from the editor at Angry Robot regarding my espionage SF novel (he thought it would sell, just not to them) so I figured I might as well pile up a few more rejections while I had the time. This is a different book than the cyberpunk book I'm working on here, and much further along.

Over the past two days, I've gone through a list of 48 agencies and queried 10 of them (the other 38 didn't have anyone looking for a book like mine). It consistently amazes me how long it takes to double-check each query letter, and how mentally exhausting it is to put together multiple queries. It's not pleasant, but at least it's done now.

Most of the agencies I queried either don't respond if not interested, or take eight to twelve weeks, so I expect to start getting nos by late February/early March. Those that don't respond by the end of March, of course, are saying no by silence.

Assuming no agent bites in this particular round, I'll probably toss the book directly to Baen in April (they have about a year turnaround) and, if that doesn't pan out, self-publish two years or so from now. Having now done two books that way, I'm comfortable with it, and given the positive feedback I've gotten from the 20-25 or so people who've read my book, including several published authors, I'm comfortable hiring my own editor and launching the book after my fantasy series wraps up, and if enough agents pass, why not?

Next up (tomorrow!) I'm going to drop critiques in the Writer's Group, and then we're jetting off for the holidays!

Offline SarahW

Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #82 on: December 28, 2015, 06:13:59 PM »
About to publish my next poetry book. I only self-publish at the moment, because there doesn't seem to be a market for the Magical Realistic Dark Comedy Sitcom/Tragedy middle grade at the moment.

I'm trying to decide at the moment what I want my next plot to me, so I haven't written as much as I should lately.

Offline Nora

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Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #83 on: December 29, 2015, 03:33:52 PM »
You want an adventure in publication? Here's the status of my Wendigo short story with tor.com :



So in red the refusals, in green the acceptances, and in purple, my submission.
I've officially reached the longest number of days that any submission recorded on The Grinder has had before entering that weird gap.

187 days.
So maybe tomorrow I'll wake up to my refusal letter, or maybe I'll enter the 40 more days of void that just *might* represent stories being passed to serious editors for final review?
But it's not official numbers, it only comes from the data of The Grinder. So it's also possible that some stray refusal/acceptances happened in that gap.

Clearly overthinking stuff here, but I feel like a 9 months pregnant woman : I'm so ready for this to come out!  >:(
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Offline Lady Ty

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Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #84 on: December 30, 2015, 03:06:26 AM »
So that means, even in terms of refusal you've come along long way unscathed, which is encouraging and indicative of quality. On the other hand can understand your frustration. Interesting progress chart, follow quite a lot of PR media from Tor and they seen to be very switched on, lively publishing house. Keep us updated, fingers crossed for you ;D
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Offline Nora

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Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #85 on: December 30, 2015, 09:49:02 PM »
Cheers Lady Ty.
It's official, I've stepped out of the usual reported days on the graph. Means little. Especially when you see the bloody list on Grinder and you find someone who got rejected after 324 days!
"She will need coffee soon, or molecular degeneration will set in. Her French phrasing will take over even more strongly, and soon she will dissolve into a puddle of alienation and Kierkegaardian despair."  ~ Jmack

Wishy washy lyricism and maudlin unrequited love are my specialty - so said Lady_Ty

Offline JRTroughton

Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #86 on: February 07, 2016, 01:51:40 PM »
My latest adventures...

Sold the last story I was discussing - Mother Salt and her Sisters -  to Fantasy Scroll Magazine. Should be out sometime this year.

Had The Magician's Whisper get through to the 2nd round at Clarkesworld before being rejected. That's in slush somewhere else now. It's been rejected by 6-7 top tier markets but I really think it has something.

Have The Moonlight Circus story with Apex. It's past slush and sitting at number 6 in the queue so I presume I'll hear something over the next week. The wait is killing me!

Struggling to maintain any focus on new stories or The Novel at the moment. The last month or so has been so full on I've lost a little direction with my writing.

Offline CameronJohnston

Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #87 on: February 08, 2016, 10:22:26 AM »
My latest adventures...

Sold the last story I was discussing - Mother Salt and her Sisters -  to Fantasy Scroll Magazine. Should be out sometime this year.

Had The Magician's Whisper get through to the 2nd round at Clarkesworld before being rejected. That's in slush somewhere else now. It's been rejected by 6-7 top tier markets but I really think it has something.

Have The Moonlight Circus story with Apex. It's past slush and sitting at number 6 in the queue so I presume I'll hear something over the next week. The wait is killing me!

Struggling to maintain any focus on new stories or The Novel at the moment. The last month or so has been so full on I've lost a little direction with my writing.

Good news! :) Well done on selling to Fantasy Scroll Magazine and fingers crossed for the other two stories! Getting to the second round of Clarkesworld does mean it has something, and was probably just not quite right for them at that time.

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Offline JMack

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Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #88 on: February 08, 2016, 06:54:10 PM »
Good stuff, @JRTroughton!
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Offline JRTroughton

Re: Adventures in Writing
« Reply #89 on: February 08, 2016, 06:58:09 PM »
Cheers guys. :)

I've been struggling to find the energy to keep going with The Novel of late, so a bit of short story success would be most welcome! Fingers crossed.