Getting Published: Finding a Francis

Last time I promised I would explain more about Francis and so I will (although a little later than I’d planned because of a very pleasant summer holiday in France). Having finished my book and received some truly excellent advice on how to approach publishers from the course I took with Kevin Hogan, I still found myself with something of a problem The publishing world is large.  It’s more than large.  It’s massive.  And it’s not just a matter of there being companies that publish books, there are also literary agents to consider. Do I need a literary agent?  Good question (and one I’ll answer further next time).  I have discovered that many publishers won’t accept an unsolicited manuscript.  This, it seems, is their way of telling you not to bother.  They presumably work on the basis that if your book was any good then a literary agent would want to […]

Getting Published: Finding Inspiration for the Struggle

As readers of my previous blogs will know, I’m condensing the first part of my journey in trying to get my book published because some stages have taken weeks, during which all I’ve been doing is waiting for replies. This raises a really important point: how do you find the energy to keep plugging away when things get tough, either when writing or when attempting to get published? My solution is to keep half an eye out for inspiration all the time.   I received a signed photograph of my favourite guitar player (Eric Clapton) for Christmas and, remarkably, a Fender Custom Shop Masterbuilt Clapton Stratocaster from my family and friends for my 40th birthday. The presence of both of these in my office inspire me. Clapton is a genius in my mind, but that genius was achieved by him playing guitar for hours because it was something he was passionate […]

Getting Published: Who to Target with Your Book

So, having decided that I wanted to try and get my book published by a ‘proper/established/traditional’ publisher how do you decide who to send it to? I had undertaken a course (run by Kevin Hogan) that helped enormously with the development of the book and how  I should approach getting it published, and which included some very good suggestions about what to say when you contacted a publisher, but that still leaves a very big world of publishing and me without much of a road map about where to start. One of the things I discovered quite quickly is that publishers and literary agents ‘prefer’ to have the chance to consider your submission on their own; in other words they aren’t keen on the idea of me carpet-bombing the industry with my book.  It’s easy to see why this solus approach is in the interests of the publishers and agents […]

Getting Published: To Self-Publish or Not?

So, having written my book, and to be honest a question I pondered whilst I was writing it, how should I try and get it published.  I say ‘try’ because we’ve all heard stories about people trying to find an established publisher only to discover that they receive a billion manuscripts a day and only think about looking at a couple; OK a mild exaggeration, but no doubt it’s a tough route to go. What are the options? Self-publishing sounds like one option, but in fact it covers a multitude of possibilities (and let me say right now that I’m no expert on any of them).  These range from essentially paying a company to publish your work for you to sending it to an on-line company who do nothing more than print one off (or send it electronically) when a request arrives.  Paying to be published strikes me as a risky […]