Tuesday, August 25, 2015

What Greyhaus Is Looking For - Category/Series Authors

I do acquire in all of the category/series lines. I focus primarily on Harlequin, but if an author is also interested in writing for Entangled, I am also open. For the purposes of this post, however, I am going to just focus on the Harlequin lines.

If you are someone wishing to write for a series line, it is beyond crucial that you understand the line inside and out. There are submission guidelines found on the Harlequin and Entangled website so make sure to read those guidelines carefully. Along the same lines, make sure that you read the line extensively. There is a unique voice in series writing, compared to that found in single title writing. Please note, it is not just about the word count.

Writing for a series is about finding your own voice within the parameters of the line. It is not about simply copying another author's story idea, character or plot. If you are submitting to Greyhaus, I am really looking for someone who can work within those guidelines. Make sure, in the query letter, that you can demonstrate to me how you are meeting those guidelines but what you are specifically doing differently. Just a reminder, don't go too far over the edge with those changes. The thing that makes the series lines so successful is that the publishers have done great market research and know what their readers like to see in a story.

I am also looking for someone who can produce. There is an expectation that you will be writing at least three books a year. The nice thing is since many of the lines are about half the size of a single title book, this should not be an issue. Even if you only have one book written, it is a good idea to know what the other books will be that you are planning to write in the near future. Have those ideas outlined or planned. Make sure that those books are all in the same line. These books do not all need to be part of a linked series, but the books should be in the same line.

I should add that because the productivity of these lines is pretty high, you need to be an author who can meet deadlines. Editors have some flexibility with adjusting deadlines, if there is a legitimate reason. If you are someone, however, that finds getting those deadlines can be a challenge at times, then this might not be an approach you wish to take.

When it comes to finding category/series authors, I am looking for writers who are really serious about staying here for a while. This is not just a quick training ground, or just a basic place to write so that you can get on to "bigger and better things". These lines know the power of building an author base for you and this will take time. There is nothing wrong with also writing single title books, on the side, but I will be expecting that your productivity in the early stages of your writing career does not decrease, or at least not significantly.

I have to say, I am someone who personally loves category/series writing. These books are great quick reads and when a reader picks up a line, they know exactly what they are going to get. If you want steamy, pick up a Blaze novel. If you want a story with a great inspirational message, get that Love Inspired line. Interested in exotic Alpha males, head to Presents.

I often joke that I am interested in finding authors for ALL of the Harlequin lines. It's kind of like collecting baseball cards for me. Help me fill up my collection!

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