Friday, June 3, 2016

An Open Letter To The Male Authors Out There

Dear Gentlemen,

I was answering another round of new submissions today and once again saw a disturbing trend. I have had to pass on over half of the manuscripts today because you are submitting projects that do not fit the guidelines of what the Greyhaus Literary Agency is looking for. As you are aware from your "extensive research of agents" as you have stated over and over again in your query letters, you would know that this agency ONLY accepts traditional romance and women's fiction. The agency does not accept:

  • Political thrillers
  • Crime novels
  • Self-Help books
  • Exercise and Work out books
  • Non-fiction commentaries on current political issues
  • Military novels
  • Epic Fantasies that make Game of Thrones look like an elementary school reader.
I do understand that you probably believe that your story is so unique and amazing that we should make an exception for your book. Unfortunately, that is not how the business world works. This agency represents a specific line of books and that is it.

Let me explain it this way. I often tell writers at conferences this same comparison. Let's assume I own a company that makes amazingly sexy lingerie. Do I take this into a Lowes or Home Depot that only handles hardware and construction material to have them market my product? No! Do I expect that these stories will change their marketing plans to accommodate my product? No!

It is important to note that agencies (and publishers) focus in on specific areas because they understand the genre and they are specialists in that area. Although they may be able to find a way to market your book, they will not be able to do it justice.

Now, maybe some of you are just very excited about your project. You are so excited that taking the time to review the guidelines that we (and this includes the other agencies and publishers) have put out there on our websites is not worth your time. Let me say, it really should be worth your time. We really don't want to waste your time sending out queries to locations that will never look at your work.

You may ask why I am targeting just one gender? Why not target all writers? The simple truth is, when I review my submission databases, the majority of the time when I am rejecting a story because it is not a genre I acquire, it is coming from a male author. Many of these are even sent from the actual website so you would have had the chance to read those guidelines.

I should also add that what worries me even more, are the number of authors with a Ph.D. or other advanced degree who should understand the value of research.

So, my recommendation is to take the necessary time and do your research first. There are probably agencies and publishers out there who are interested in your 500,000 word count military political thriller with an erotic fantasy spin. Unfortunately, here at Greyhaus, it is simply not something we acquire.

For this reason, I am humbly passing on your project and wish you all the best with your writing career!

Good luck!


1 comment:

  1. This post made me smile. I so understand the fervent wish that an agency would make an exception--but I know that doesn't happen, and your reasons make perfect sense.