When is the time to walk away? #TuesdayThoughts with Doris (@mamaD8)

Hello, lovely peeps, Doris here. As the title says I’m pondering when enough really is enough and you throw in the towel, walk away, hit the high road… whatever you want to call it.

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I’m talking publishers, of course.

When you realize that for whatever reason, you and that particular publishing house are just not a right fit anymore.

I’ve talked about not all publishers being created equal on the Quills before here.

Suppose, however, that a publisher you’ve been previously happy with, is just… well insert a reason of your choice here.

What do you do, when on the face of it everything is fine? You sell reasonably well, they pay on time etc, so no red flags as such, and yet, there are small things that niggle. Those small things get persistently more annoying. Not so much of a niggle, but a giant thorn in your side which you simply can’t ignore anymore?

Well, you have a choice to make. Do you carry on ignoring your concerns, especially when you see other authors voicing said concerns to the publisher in question, and they get shot down, or do you stop subbing to that publisher.

The easy answer is, of course, if you’re not happy, stop submitting to them. What, if you have series to finish, however. Typically, any publisher has first refusal on any sequels, so then what do you do?

It’s a dilemma, for sure, and there are no easy answers. Only incredibly hard choices. No author likes to leave their readers hanging, knowing they’re eagerly waiting for more stories in a series. However, that may just have to happen, or at the very least wait out the contract terms until you can get your rights back and sub the series elsewhere.

Sometimes you can re-name characters and fit them into a series elsewhere, or, start a spin off series of sorts. Either way it’s a mess, not to mention that sinking feeling at leaving something behind that was once a good thing.

Then there is the whole, not trying to commit professional suicide thing. The publishing world is small and you don’t want to be known as the author who always complains, etc.

However, your concerns, no matter how small or big, are worth listening to, and when your publisher is not willing to do that… it really only leaves you one option.

Pack your bags and leave onto pastures new.

Another very good reason to never put all of your eggs into the proverbial basket, because you never know what the future holds.

Whatever you decide to do, do it in a professional manner, however. Especially, as this whole thing is so subjective. What really bothers you, might not even register on another author’s radar. If you find your concerns echoed, however, by several authors in the same house… well, you have your answer.

There you have it, me at my most philosophical self.

Do stay naughty, folks.

D xxx


Finding Your Niche: Freaky Friday with Michelle Roth

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Well, hey! Would you lookee there! I’m back for another Freaky Friday with Michelle Roth. This week I’ll be kind of piggy-backing on what Raven talked about yesterday. In she talked about a recent rejection and how that stung.

Believe me. They do. No matter how many books you’ve got under your belt. No matter how many times you’ve gotten the “Thanks but no thanks”… it still burns.

I’m naturally a self-centered person, so I thought … HOW CAN I MAKE THIS ABOUT ME?

No actually, it got to thinking about my own rejections. One of them stuck out to me, and that’s the one that I’ll be talking about. This particular rejection is the most awkward of them all. It’s the AVOIDABLE one.

This rejection was kind and gentle in a way that it didn’t particularly have to be. It basically told me that the story that I wrote wasn’t the type of story this particular publisher was looking to tell. It was well-written, and would probably find a good home somewhere else, but… not with them.

The book wasn’t anything like ANYTHING they publish on a mass-scale. I gave absolutely NO thought to the type of books they published, the length, the particular tropes, etc.

Admittedly, it was my first time subbing a book anywhere, so I didn’t have a whole lot of experience to go on. But essentially I wasted my time AND their time by not thinking about my intended audience.

So, my advice? Once you’ve written and edited your book copiously in the manner you see fit, take a look at the publishers that are accepting open submissions. Find one (or more) that fit you.

If you’ve written a book where your main character is a high powered lawyer from Chicago who gets handcuffed and spanked on page 16 by his Domme girlfriend, then you should be targeting places that sell those type of books well. Perhaps Harlequin Historical is not the place for you. 😉

I know that was a rudimentary example. You’d surely use a bit more care than that, but you get my point, yeah?

If you’re writing BDSM, look for publishers that embrace that. Shifters and vamps? No sense trying to get a company that does strictly contemporary to publish that. They probably won’t.

Most publishers will tell you exactly what they want, what they don’t want, and what you should be sending them on their submissions page. Do yourself a favor (unlike me when I first subbed) and read that!

Till next time!