Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Oh, for some good news

When I started this blog, I presented myself as someone with great journalistic experience but little knowledge of publishing. I was a man with high hopes. I had an undying belief in my project. I figured it was just a matter of time before some agent felt the same way.

I feel the same today. I'm just a little older and a little wiser about how all this works.

There are two ways to get your foot in the door as an author. You have to hit the right agent the right way on the right day ... have the pixie dust fall, as one agent put it ... or you have to be so gifted as a writer that you can't be ignored. I don't think many writers today fall into that second category. I have read too many who have hit the right combination because they write the right stuff ... stories of spies, medical examiners, cops, wizards, sorcerers, vampires and the like. They all hit the right agent the right way on the right day, or else they had such a long list of established work that a publishing house is comfortable going back to him or her on a regular basis.

The way publishing is going these days has forced those changes. Borders is dead, and Barnes and Noble is trying to find ways to keep from dying. E-books are rising. Self-publishing is becoming attractive even for authors with serious skills who can't find the combination to the lock in the agent-publishing house world. That might be my reality in the not-too-distant future. But I am waiting for my latest round of queries to go through the system, and I am going to approach two agents who showed interest earlier but eventually decided not to seek more from me. Maybe things will be different with the changes I have made.

I will be published, and I will work my butt off to make it a successful venture. I have never taken the easy way out, and I won't start now. In the meantime, I have started another novel unrelated to this first work. I have at least two other good ideas rattling around, and there is the possibility of doing followup novels to my first story if things click as far as sales. I am in this for the long run. I will make this work.

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