Jan 12 2013

Let The Submission Process Begin!!!

Posted by Mathias

Last week I officially started sending out queries for my epic fantasy novel Under the Darkened Moon.  I started by selecting five literary agents and sent them all queries.  I followed their submission guidelines and sent what they requested, whether it was just a query, a query plus a synopsis, or a query plus a synopsis plus sample pages.

A couple days later I got my first official rejection.  It was a rejection based only on a query letter and a synopsis and not the actual story itself, but a rejection none-the-less.  Now I am looking at my set of next five lit agents to send letters to. (more…)

Oct 30 2012

Quick Ways To Lose Valuable Trust

Posted by Mathias

Selling books is just like selling any other product.  First you have to have something to sell.  Then, you have to convince people to buy it.

One way to convince people to buy your book, or any product for that matter, is to establish trust with your potential readers.  Trust is valuable.  It is so valuable, that it should be guarded as though it were the most precious thing in the world.  Give your potential readers a reason to distrust you, and you may find it hard to ever sell another book.  Or, at least sell enough books to make writing worth your time.

There are some really quick ways to loose trust.  But, in our zest to sell our product, we might not even realize that we are doing them.  That is dangerous.  So let’s look at some of the ways we lose our reader’s trust, shall we?

(more…)

Oct 01 2012

Fantasy-Faction Anthology Starts Releasing Long List

Posted by Mathias

The Fantasy-Faction Anthology has begun releasing it’s long list of 30 stories from which the six for publication will be selected.  The anthology received about 1,700 submissions.

The first five titles for consideration were released yesterday, and over this week the remaining 25 will also be announced.  And no, my submission Second Chances did not make the cut as of yet.  With so many submissions, the odds were never really in my favor, but I thought I would try anyway.

So far, the fist five titles on the long list are:

You Have Only One Chance by Vasso Christou

Winter Unicorn by Rose Taylor

Alderwood Bodies by Steve Erdal

Ninety-nine Macaws by Leslianne Wilder

The Dealer by Miah Saunders

Jul 29 2012

The Writing Contest Crap Shoot

Posted by Mathias

Writing contests are crap shoots. Just because you don’t win doesn’t mean your work sucks. First of all, the more entries there are, the stiffer your competition is. Your story can still be great but loose because others stories were simply greater.

There is also the problem of the specific tastes of the judges themselves. I don’t care how unbiased they try to be, they still have their preferences to what they do and do not like.  And if you’re not what they like?  Well, the odds are stacked against you even further. (more…)

Jun 09 2012

If Someone Asks For Honesty …

Posted by Mathias

Realize this, I beg you.  When someone asks you for your “honest opinion” about something, odds are they don’t really want your “honest opinion” unless it means you agree with them and are willing to stroke their ego.  If not?  Well, then what they really want is you to lie and make them feel good by doing so.

Authors are notorious for this sort of thing.  If you are not willing to tell them that their latest manuscript, or even published book, is “five-star” quality, hold your tongue unless you are willing to be cursed at and argued with until the cows come home.

Jun 03 2012

A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Quote for You

Posted by Mathias

“It is known that there are an infinite number of worlds, simply because there is an infinite amount of space for them to be in. However, not every one of them is inhabited. Therefore, there must be a finite number of inhabited worlds. Any finite number divided by infinity is as near to nothing as makes no odds, so the average population of all the planets in the Universe can be said to be zero. From this it follows that the population of the whole Universe is also zero, and that any people you may meet from time to time are merely the products of a deranged imagination.” – Chapter 19 The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

May 27 2012

I Feel Better After This Advice

Posted by Mathias

My friend Dan is a literary agent.  Unfortunately, he and his agency don’t deal with Fantasy novels so he cannot accept my manuscript.  But he has given me some names and suggestions about who I should submit my novel to and has given me great advice on my novel Under the Darkened Moon to help me out along the way.  But none of his advice has been as valuable or helpful as this:

“You hear about how 95% to 99% of all manuscripts are rejected right?  Well, I don’t know that you should have to worry about the odds being that high against you.  First of all, you have two things going for you that those 95% to 99% don’t have!  First is that you have written one heck of a manuscript for being a first time author.  I am very impressed with it.  Secondly is that you are going to make sure that you submit your manuscript to the right people!  I know you are because we have talked about this.

See, those there are the two reasons why so many books get rejected.  They are either not submitted to agents or publishers who deal with the material the author is writting about or what is submitted are horribly written first or rought drafts with zero thought put into them.  Plus, remember this please, that high rejection rate includes all the rejections of every manuscript sent to every potential agent or publisher.  You submit to 99 times and are rejected by all 99 then you are at 100% rejection rate.  But when you submit to the 100th and are accepted you are in that 1%.

I really hate how people in my industry try scaring off new authors with daunting figures that makes getting published look like an insurmountable moutain.  It is hard.  But when people put the time in they can be rewarded.  Now go and submit!  I am not saying you will get offers and ink a deal.  However I do deeply feel that anyone who rejects your manuscript is going to wish they hadn’t.”

This kind of encouragement makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.