If you’re familiar with my blog postings from 2017 and 2018, you know my writing career has been full of starts, stutters, stops, and restarts over the last three decades. While I’ve learned a lot about writing and the publishing business through conferences and networking, there’s been limited success. I’ve completed four novels—one has been hidden away, one has been put aside for future consideration, and two are currently in play. The 2005 publication of Suspect was not successful or even memorable, and my short-term experience with a publisher in 2016 was disheartening.
But there’s always hope, right?
In 2017 I pitched both Mistaken Identity and Connections to an editor and an agent. I received some good comments from one and nothing from the other. I took those comments and the advice that I received from the editor I worked with in 2016 and set about polishing the two manuscripts.
My next task was to send out more queries. The internet is great, but it was quite tedious to find viable editors, publishers, and agents to approach, even with the help of Writer’s Market. This is not news to any unpublished writer. Many publishers require a writer to go through an agent. Some are no longer accepting new authors or unsolicited submissions. Nevertheless, I found a dozen feasible prospects in January 2019. It was a start.
While all those I queried were accessible through the internet, only a few accepted email queries with attachments. A few accepted email queries only and would ask for chapters if interested. About half provided a link to either the Authors.me or the Queryme.Online website, each of which provided a platform for the author to submit a profile and manuscript.
The first time I used Authors.me it matched my work to other perspective editors and publishers as well as the publisher who “sent” me. I was able to do a quick look up to research the match and agree to or decline the opportunity. I was also provided a link to my profile so that I could monitor progress for all my submissions.
Queryme.Online linked me directly to the particular editor/publisher’s account and provided me with a link to monitor the status. As is typical, some of the queries were rejected immediately while others went unanswered for many weeks. Painfully slow progress was visible through the review cycle on Authors.me or Queryme.Online.
As time went by, I questioned if working on the third novel in the series was a waste of my time since neither of the earlier series novels had been published. I considered starting a totally new book with a fresh idea. Still, I was determined to continue sending out queries. In addition, I made plans to attend a couple of regional conferences to do pitches and network.
Unfortunately, the notion that I might never be published made itself comfortable in my mind.
And then I received the email I had been waiting for. A publisher was interested.
Considering the Offer—in my next blog.
Hi Beth, I would love to read your novels. ~Suzanne Dell-St. Clair (Unity)
Thanks, Suzanne. First one is due for release in the Spring.