Immortality of Vampire Fiction vs. The Industry

frustratedWARNING: I'm venting a little here today.

The Nelson Literary Agency posted some advice/information in their newsletter about the difference between a “good” manuscript and a “salable” manuscript. You can write a great story, good grammar, character development is tight and storyline is solid. But if the editors don't want it, they won't buy it. I quote the following, but I'm going to put my own adaptation in brackets because I've been told the same thing about my manuscripts (both vampire and steampunk/dystopian):

“For example, dystopian [vampire] stories are hot right now in the young-adult [adult/erotic] genre. As a result, for the past twelve months, editors have been inundated by dystopian [vampire] projects. They are tired of them, even though these titles are still releasing and some are doing quite well. Readers are still enjoying dystopian [vampire] novels, but editors don't want to buy them anymore. So right now, no matter how well written your dystopian YA [vampire novel] might be or how cool the premise, if an agent is taking a look at it, she is probably thinking she can't sell it and will pass on offering representation. That's the bald truth. The timing just plain sucks, and as an agent, selling projects is all about perfect timing: landing the right project, on the right editor's desk, at exactly the right moment.” (my emphasis on the underline)

More than anything else, I think this is a prime example and reason as to why self-publishing is so successful. Yes, you get the crap out there…I totally understand that. But the Big Six (as the big publishers are known as) publish crap, too.

What frustrates me the most is the editors KNOW there is an audience for these books – such as in the aforementioned Dystopian YA and my genre of topic, vampires – and yet because they're tired of reading them, they don't want to see them anymore. This is a business, people! Not your time to have a leisurely read! Print what the readers want!

OMGOne agent told me the reason why editors won't even look at such manuscripts (e.g., vampire, dystopian, steampunk, etc.) is because they're tired of getting a bunch of crap manuscript with the same stories. My response – and I can say this because I'm an editor – OMG get over it! That's your job as an editor. READING MANUSCRIPTS. If you don't like reading crap manuscripts, get another freakin' job. The sad truth is there is a TON of crap out there; it comes with the territory.

I belong to a group called I Love Vampire Novels and they have been my biggest supporters of my self-published novels – my Bonded By Blood Vampire Chronicles. Their FB page boasts over 100,000 LIKES. And I'm sure there are a lot more vampire lovers out there than just 100,000. This group and others like them, J.R. Ward, Charlaine Harris, Laurell K. Hamilton and Sherrilyn Kenyon are all proof people love vampire stories and they sell well.

But the editors are tired of them. :\

No problem! We'll just self-publish and make 70% off our book sales and the Big Six can continue whining about how their industry is failing. Enjoy the trip down!

Thanks for letting me vent! If you made it this far, thanks for putting up with me! Do you feel just as passionate about this topic? Does it really matter to you? Do you have your own experience about the industry you'd like to share? How about from a reader's perspective? Am I completely whacked in my reasoning?

That's my two pence…

Arial 😉

 

Tips on Getting Published

Improving your grammar skills will help you get publishedCAN One Increase Their Chances of Getting Published?

Absolutely!! I'm putting on my editor's hat today to share some tips on how to increase your chances of getting published. One of the first is to study your craft…and I can tell you there are MANY writers who don't do this. This alone can help you stand out above the rest and get you published.

I'm appalled at the crap that comes flooding through submissions. And I STILL–OMG STILL–get authors asking, “Do we have to send in a polished manuscript, even to an agent?” Seriously????? Why would you want to send anything less? If these authors think getting their manuscript cleaned up for submissions is time-consuming, then they are definitely not ready for the editing process. And then, after so many rejections, they become self-published. It breaks the heart!! Writing should be taken seriously as a career, which means LEARNING YOUR CRAFT! Never stop studying and always strive to improve.

Here's an excellent resource for some FREE grammar assistance: Writer's Digest – Grammatically Correct by Anne Stillman. This link is to a free download excerpt of the book and worth the view. Lots of great advice in this snippet.

Another way to improve your writing and your chances of getting published is Continue reading

Direct Access to Editors

Grand Opening

It is with GREAT pleasure and much excitement that I announce my new business endeavor with my dear friend/fellow editor pal AJ Nuest. Today is the first day of our Grand Opening celebration and this is the announcement we're lucky enough to post as guests on several upcoming blogs:

September 1-15th marks the official
Grand Opening of Mystical Press Services!!!

This means 50% Off all our classes
and services through September 15th!

http://mysticalpress.com 

In case you haven’t yet heard about our website, allow me to introduce you to a place where you just might find the fulfillment of your dreams. That’s right! The talented folks at Mystical Press want to help you reach your publishing goals!

How do we do that? I’m glad you asked!

Mystical Press is the culmination of an idea that came from two authors and professionally trained editors—AJ Nuest and Arial Burnz—where we help authors bridge the gap between the form-letter rejection and publication. In fact, we believe in this venture so passionately, our tagline is “Helping authors achieve their dreams.

At Mystical Press our primary goal is to help writers. As authors, we understand the frustration of not receiving constructive and useful feedback, the aggravation of navigating the murky depths of the publishing industry and that, sometimes, authors just need a place to vent. Well, we’re here to tell you, the insanity can end! Continue reading

Update on MIDNIGHT CAPTIVE – Book 2 of BBB Vampire Chronicles

I've had a few of my readers begging me for Book 2 of my Bonded By Blood Vampire Chronicles, so I thought I would post an update on where I am with it.

I'm so sorry! I should have listened toAmanda Hocking and NOT put a release date on future projects until the book was near completion. I stated at the end of Book 1 that Book 2 would be done in October 2011. My day job (editing) picked up and I just have not had the time to write.

I did put a lot of effort into the novel in December and was about three-quarters of the way done with the first draft…and then the holidays hit and then Star Wars: The Old Republic came out and I also got sick (see previous spew about that). Read more…

Qualities of a Good Critique Partner

I've heard a lot of comments by many in the publishing industry that the occupation of a writer is a lonely one. You sit at the computer (typewriter or yellow legal pad, for you nostalgic types), alone with your thoughts and the voices you hear, crafting your tales. Though that part of the process may be a solitary experience, there's a bigger picture. I've been writing for many years and along the journey, there are many people a writer needs to further their career along: beta readers, critique partners, editors, publishers, cheering section, readers and more. The journey to getting published is rarely done without others and they all have their place and importance. Since I recently found my critique partner, that's the one I'll focus on today. (Click on the links above if you're interested in learning more about the other people that contribute to a writer's journey.) Continue reading