The Writing Newbie

Writing is an adventure. Enjoy the journey and write the way you love!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Publishing 102

Let’s talk about our biggest dream shall we? Getting published.
I already gave some tips on publishing like that you need to make sure your story is absolutely ready before you send it to the publishers.
Here I’m going to assume that you’re aiming straight for a publisher instead of an agent. I’ll write about agents later. With publishing you have two options: Self-publishing and normal publishing. Let’s talk about normal self-publishing for now.

Alright, first I’m going to clear up some comment mistakes made about publishing:

1) It doesn’t cost you anything. When you try to get your book publish the only thing it will cost you is the stamp, envelope and paper you use. Any self respecting publisher wouldn’t let their clients pay. You’ll get your money in the form of royalties (which is a percentage of the money your books make) and the publishers will get theirs when they sell your book.

2) Age, sex, religion, skin color—any of that, it doesn’t matter at all when you try to get your book published. The publisher doesn’t care if you’re black or white or if you’re only 16 years old. All they really care about is if the story is good and if it will sell.
3) Publishing at a big publishing house doesn’t mean that your story will be a best seller. Though it is true that a lot of book stores will automatically get the books that certain big publishers publish. So your book will probably be in more stores, which will increase the chance but not ensure it. To get your book under the spotlight you’ll need good marketing. And the book itself has to be good if it becomes a best seller. It’s in the hands of the readers.

Alright back to publishing. Here are the steps that you need to make when you want to get your book published:

1) Rewrite & Polish your story x5
2) Figure out what genre your book is and who your audience is. Is it YA (young adult) or is it for kids?
3) When searching for a publisher be sure that you contact those who actually want to publish the kind of book you’ve written. It’s no use sending a romance novel to a publisher who only publishes horror. Or a children’s novel to a publisher who is only looking for YA or adult novels.
4) When sending in material make sure that you stick to the rules. If they just want a query letter, don't send your manuscript. If you don't stick to the rules, they'll think you're a complete newbie (don’t worry it’s not a bad thing. Just let the publisher know that you’ve taken your time and done your homework with this) and if you can't even follow those simple rules, impossible to work with.
5) Make sure that you send it to the right person. If you have a writers market or something like that, make sure that it’s still up to date. If the publisher has a website check it to be sure!
6) Make sure that what you send in is spotless without any mistakes.
7) Send it and hope for the best. With publishers it can take up to 6 months before you get an answer. Don't sit around waiting--it will drive you mad. Go write something else. Start a new story. Get your mind of things.

I hope that this helped you a bit in the hard world of trying to get published. I’ve taken a break from it myself, because I need time to finish my third book and rewrite the first (I made the mistake to send it way too early). But I’ve been there and had to figure all of this out on my own. So if you have any questions at all don’t hesitate to leave a comment!

Here is a link to with 33 Writing Terms You Should Know. It’s true, you should know them, it will make getting published a lot easier.
Here are some examples, taken from the site:

Simsub (Simultaneous submission): submitting the same piece of work to more than one magazine/publisher at the same time.
Multisub (Multiple submission): sending more than one work to the same magazine/publisher at the same time.
MG (Middle Grade): generally speaking, readers between 8 and 12 years old.
YA (Young Adult): generally speaking, readers between 12 and 18 years old.
MS/MSS: MS means manuscript. MSS is the plural, manuscripts.

Good luck with getting published everyone! And keep me updated with how it works out for you! ^^

Keep writing

Xx LordKiwii


  1. Yay, this cleared up a lot of my questions about publishing. Thank you yet again for sharing your writing knowledge with the rest of the world! :D

  2. haha ^^" I'm glad it helped! :)