Dear Author Friday: How Can I Get My Book Published?

Dear Author Friday is a question and answer (Q & A)  series where I respond to readers and friends about my life as a contemporary romance writer.

Dear Author

There were two factors that helped me get my books published: preparation and accepting rejection.

The first tip I’d give an aspiring author is to prepare. Preparation can be accomplished in a variety of ways such as: reading books from authors published in the genre you want to writing in, taking courses or workshops, entering contests, and if possible, speaking with published authors in your targeted genre. Once you have a workable draft of your manuscript, join a critique group and above all, accept constructive feedback. All of these things will help in the end so that you provide a quality product for agents and editors to review.

However, rejection is another story all together. About three weeks after I’d made my first submission to an agent, I received my initial dose of rejection. I was crushed. During the entire walk from my mailbox back to my front door, I sobbed.  Why didn’t she like the story that I’d poured my blood, sweat and tears into? Thankfully, I’d saved a copy of what went out. Six months ago, I stumbled across it, read the first page and stopped. Heck, I would’ve rejected it, too.  The story didn’t have a plot!!!  Not only that, my writing sucked. My pose was choppy, there were pages of narrative that didn’t move the story forward and I switched POV’s so often I thought my brain would explode.  And as an aspiring author travels the road to publication, they’ll encounter other forms of rejection, too. Instead of allowing frustration to take root, examine the reasons behind it. Sometimes, the story isn’t what a particular agent or editor is looking for. That doesn’t mean the story isn’t good. It simply means the match isn’t there.

A couple of books I’d highly encourage aspiring authors to purchase are: Building Better Plots by Robert Kernen and Writing Novels that Sells by Jack Bickham.

Remember, preparation and accepting rejection are the keys to landing on the New York Times Bestsellers List.

Until next time – stay well and be blessed!