Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Publishing Bandaid

I haven't sent my first book, Homer and Rosie, to even one publisher. I haven't tried to contact any agents. I've researched and made lists but I just can't seem to jump into it. I'm gearing up to start my next book to be called, The Companion, unless I change it, which is likely. I'm really excited about it. It's completely different than my first. But, still, I can't seem to begin the process of trying, begging to be published. Sure, I sent out some stories to magazines when I was taking the children's writing course through The Institute for Children's Literature. But, to date, my only publications were in my local paper. And, for now, that's off limits since they can't afford to pay anyone. Although, I've considered sending them stuff as gifts just for the thrill of seeing my writing published.

I keep telling myself, after my highschool English teacher reads Homer, I'll either continue to revise, trash it or I'll rip that bandaid off and begin to beg for publication.

And, which should you do? Publisher or Agent? Where do you start? I've seen advice that goes both ways. I was thinking agent. I feel like that way, I have an advocate before I start checking off publishers who have crossed Homer off their lists.

What have you guys done or plan to do?


  1. I'm no expert, but my opinion is that an agent is important. I queried a few agents, got a couple of requests for partials, and was ultimately rejected. I came to the realization that my work just wasn't ready yet. My humble advice is to finish writing the second book before querying the first. Unless, of course, you're 100% certain it's ready to be submitted. :) Good Luck!

  2. I just try to publish my work and cross my fingers - the writer's world isn't a pretty one. I've done that with my work A Heart of Ice, publishers accpeted it, I didn't pay for it, and the publication is now pending. Ugh.

    I am also looking for follwers of my blog. Could you please visit and comment on some of my posts at ? Thanks. I'm a writer too, so I'm trying to get my voice heard. Please follow if you like!

  3. Hi Jennifer,

    It might be a little different for me because i write picture books, but I started with editors. After I got my first book published and had a larger body of work (half a dozen solid manuscripts) I started looking for an agent.

    I'd be happy to give you more info if you are interested.

  4. Oh Miss Jenn, what to do...what to do. First of all, don't you dare give up on Rosie and Homer before you finish the revisions. It has heart, AND a market and I want you to see it through. Don't stress over the marketing aspect until it's ready to go. Focus on the writing itself. While you're waiting for your English teacher's critique, start project number two. The best advice I ever received was from author, Laurie Halse Anderson. She said that when she finishes one book, she starts the next. When she started, she wrote twelve books before she sold her first novel, FEVER out of the slush pile. It's easy to get wrapped up in the marketing end of the business before you're ready. I've learned that the hard way. Wait until you have something to take to market, then create a game plan.

  5. Thanks you guys for your words of wisdom! I greatly appreciate them.

  6. Goodness, I feel humbled in such awesome company! My manuscript sits on my desk, yelling at me every day. Editor is as far as I have stepped. I need to read more of you awesome women writers blogs to become keen enough on what to query an agent or publisher would be taking a huge leap of courage to me. That whole fear of rejection,annoying little voice in my head. But...maybe rejection, learning, re-writing, learning more, absorbing from others, and continuing to seek your desire, and pour your passion onto paper is what makes a writer?