I have learned how both rewarding and difficult it is being a writer. Let me just say that it’s a good thing that I have a full time job. I won’t lie about it – there is a lot of competition out there so it is really important to write a good story and get lucky in getting a book published by a real publisher or finding an agent. Most traditional publishers won’t even look at a manuscript unless you have an agent. It can be pretty demanding trying to break in.
I have self-published two novels and a couple of short stories but my goal is to get published by a real publisher. That’s a problem. I have submitted my manuscripts to several publishers and agents only to be rejected for one reason or another. If you love rejection, you can get a lot of practice at it being a writer.
Most critiques are nothing more than a form letter while some can be brutal. I had one editor who ripped me with my use of the word “parsonage”. A lot of critiques are really purely subjective depending on the editor or what mood the person is when they read your manuscript.
One thing I do not understand is when they note some grammatical errors. In the name of Grammarly and Microsoft Word grammar checker you would thing that wouldn’t happen. Somehow it slips in their (see what I did THERE?).
The publishers that send me an email who WANT to publish my book are usually what some call “vanity presses”. These are people who will publish your book but the author has to pay the publisher.
This week I sent my book “Passing Toward The Prize” to a place called Christian Faith Publishing. I had seen their commercial on TV and decided to send them my manuscript to see what they would do with it. First, my manuscript went to their review board. Two days later I get a phone call that they loved it. Now, don’t take me wrong here. I wasn’t jumping up and down about it. Of course they loved it because they want my business right? The reviewer said there were a few minor grammatical errors. I mean, they’re not going to say it was perfect. It’s their job to find something to critique.
I agreed to let them send me the information on the next step in the process. I’m sure you can guess the next step was the details on what I would need to pay. In order to have them publish my book, they want $495 now and $295 per month for 10 months. Now I ask you – who can afford additional $295 in their budget? Not many people I know. Here I am an author who has never been published so how do they think I have the funds when I haven’t made any money yet? Self-publishing on Amazon hasn’t really made it rain. My 1099 from last year of $26.42 is painful reality of that.
So what does a writer/author like me do in dealing with these setbacks? The only way I know how – keep on writing and submitting. Will I ever “hit it big” or get published by a traditional publisher? I will. I mean you have to have goals. Even without a publisher or agent I am still a writer.
I probably should brush up on my grammar to. *wink*