If at first - getting published

I was asked by Hector Mackenzie, editor of the Ross-shire Journal, whether the publisher of More Deaths Than One , (YouWriteOn.com), was my first port of call or had I approached any other publisher beforehand? My response...

'The typescript of More Deaths Thn One must have added to what a publisher rather rudely calls his 'slush pile' in many a West London office! Publishers and Agents alike. You can typically wait six weeks or more for any response and when it comes it will almost certainly be a stereotyped rejection. I've been told that one first novel in two thousand ever sees the printers' ink. True, you can comfort yourself with the thought that many, many authors from Mark Twain to J K Rowling received lots of similar rejections, but it doesn't help. Your book is your baby and you know how beautiful it is and cannot understand when others don't! Yes, I received some encouraging comments but half the time I knew full well that my seed had simply fallen on to stony ground for any one of a hundred reasons, many of them unconnected to me or to the quality of my carefully constructed submission.'

In reluctant defence of the industry, asking a publisher of novels to stake probably ten thousand pounds on bringing out your work, which is that of an unknown author, is much akin to asking for the moon. Think about concocting a new brand of toothpaste and writing to Procter and Gamble asking them to make and sell it for you! However well-prepared your request it is unlikely to be granted. Of course you can think about the reaction of the rejector when your literary work sells its first million, but so what? Best to move on. Get the thing printed and then you have something to sell. If it is good enough it has a chance to rise like cream to the top of the milk. Self-publishing costs little except your time and really very little of that compared to the time you spent dreaming up and writing down your story.

Ditto your selling of the thing which for most authors will be the hardest bit, but ... 'if at first you don't succeed try, try again'! By the way; myself, I'm finding it all good fun.

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