Friday, May 13, 2016

Do You "Know" Who You Are Submitting To?

It is really a shame that I end up rejecting so many authors simply because the person has sent a project that would never have worked for me here at Greyhaus. Far too many authors simply print off a list of agents and start cranking out those emails and submissions without taking the time to really know if the project is right or not. But, there is a bigger issue. How well do you know this person you are handing over your project to?

Before I go any further, I do need to stress that this doesn't just apply to editors and agents, but also to those of you who want to take the self-publishing route. It is beyond important to take the time to really get to know who you want to take care of your "baby" that you worked so hard on.

Here comes my "Captain Obvious" statement... Every editor, agent, or publishing company does things differently. REALLY????

But let me be serious here. While we all might offer the same services, the approaches we take to the process do differ. Along the same lines, the "atmosphere" of the company you want to work with will be very different. For anyone who has ever worked in the same industry but for different companies will know exactly what I mean. How much of an open door policy do the bosses and administrators have? What is their policy for dealing with conflict? How aggressive are they when it comes to marketing? This is just a basic list, but I think you get the idea.

What frustrates me is the approach I see too many authors take. They simply send projects out and which ever company says yes first "is the best one." And yet, how many times do we see these people in situations years, or even months later, in situations they wish they were not in. I will tell you, there isn't a day that goes by when I read a submission from an author who says, "I tried to publish with X company, only to find out that Y was happening." Did they not investigate?

As an agent, I take the same approach when sending out submissions. While I might have a paranormal romance I want to sell, and I know of a lot of places that take that type of project, I still determine what is going to be the best approach for my author on a personal level. Will this author really be able to work with the climate and the personality of that company? Is this a right match.

Now, I know what some of you are saying. There is no way to find out about these people. I am sorry to say this, but there is a lot out there. Authors do talk. Companies do have pretty transparent websites that give you a sense of who that company really is. It may not be in writing, but the personality does come out. It is just up to you, as an author, to keep  your eyes open.

1 comment:

  1. I'll be going through that process soon with a cozy mystery I've written. Looks like my homework is cut out for me.