Saturday, 5 July 2008

Does Age Matter When Submitting a Manuscript?

Tell Me a Story - advice

AJ, I have two questions. I've heard from various people that some publishers make their choices based on the genre of the book that they are reviewing. My book is, well, it's trying to be fantasy (I'm still in the process of writing it and I should be done in at least five months if I keep working on it consistently). I was just wondering, is that statement true or false? And the last question is should I wait until I'm older to try and get it published? I know I don't know much now, and I'm thinking my thoughts on things may change, but I'm more worried that they won't accept my literature because of my age regardless if it's good or not. Libby J.

Libby J, it's certainly true you should be sure the publisher accepts books in your genre. It would be a complete waste of your time and their's to send a horror story, to a publisher who specializes in romantic suspense ... The best thing to do is check for suitable publishing houses in a trade book such as Writers' and Artists' Yearbook They describe who publishes what, and how to write a letter of submission. They also give information on reputable agents, which might be useful.

In terms of age, publishing houses don't normally question how old an author is. They'll only be interested in whether your work is up to scratch. My main concern is whether you have sufficient maturity of writing. You'll probably be up against writers who have years of experience, so be prepared for rejection - but having said that, rejection happens no matter what the age. It's an unfortunate fact of a writer's apprenticeship.

You certainly show signs of maturity in posing questions about your age and ability, so maybe you ARE ready. I certainly wish you well.
Good luck.

Treachery: a romantic supense 

Without Reproach: a romantic suspense