Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Road Trip Wednesday #108

This Week's Topic:
How far would you go to get published?

We writers can form quite an attachment to our characters and stories. But we also know publishing is a business, and sometimes to make it in said business--to really build a career from it--we have to bend a bit. How far would you go to break into the publishing world?

1st - Jumping on the trend train
2nd - Switch to a well selling genre
3rd - Minor revisions requested to sign with an agent
Home - Major revisions requested by an editor

So, being wonderfully and purely unpublished, I am free to muddle around as much as I like.  And I'm muddling away.  No one is going to ask me to jump on a trend or switch genres, and I'm not going to.  I'm not planning to ever even try to write YA contemporaries, because honestly, high school was kind of boring, and when I was in high school, the last thing I wanted to do was read about high school.  And yet, I've written things that could totally be classed as YA contemporaries, (if they hadn't been quite so explicit).  I've written paranormals.  I've written fiction about a noir-style mermaid world.

For 1st and 2nd base the important thing is to keep in mind the difference between being given a prompt and being told what to do.  I love getting prompts.  Sometimes they catch my imagination and I end up with a 30,000 word novella before I noticed that I started writing.  But I hate being told what to do.  So if an agent says, hey, I've got this contract for a cool fantasy-mystery about demon-fish and I think you're the girl to write it.  I will say, hey, send me the info, I'll check it out.  They say that constraints are the best way to work your imagination, and I agree.  The smaller the focus the bigger my ideas get.  (And of course, the bigger the field for maneuvering in the fewer ideas I have.)  But if anyone tells me, "hey, if you aren't writing paranormals you'll never get published," I will bridle in annoyance and set out to prove them wrong.
(Notably, the only prompt that consistently leaves me cold is Vampires.  I have nothing to say about Vampires.)

For 3rd and Home, really, they're par for the course.  There will always be revision requests.  If it will actually be better for the book, then I'm down with it.  If it's something that rubs me the wrong way, like de-gaying or whitewashing a character, I might fight that.  If it's just something that will be a lot of work?  Well, writing is a lot of work.  Better get on it.

Right now, I'm totally sure that my book is going to be awesome, and as soon as I finish making it so, everyone else will agree.  :D


  1. I agree with all your answers =)
    And good luck with your book!

  2. Wow, what a photo to accompany your post! I agree that it's hard to be told what to do, when it's your writing. But so far, if I give myself time to digest the suggestions I often find they were right and will improve the book. Not in every case, but most of the time!

  3. It's awesome that you are going to stick to what you love to do. I hope all writers do that--or else the writing isn't authentic. Great answer!

  4. Awesome! I love your enthusiasm for the craft! Great answers and good luck!

  5. This is great! I totally agree with what you said about receiving a prompt. I didn't think about it that way.

  6. Yes, prompts or challenges are a great way to stimulate the imagination. Good answer.

  7. I know how you feel about contemporary. It's not my genre either, and no one wants me to try and write it!

    Demon fish? That sounds awesome ;)

    Good luck to you!

  8. Agree with you on all points, and love the picture!

  9. I think we're on opposite ends of the prompt spectrum--the less constraints I have, the bigger my ideas get, haha. But I completely agree with you on revisions. Everyone has to revise, and minor stuff isn't a big deal. But if I don't agree with the major stuff, I'll definitely fight it.

  10. Very nice and honest answer (interesting picture too!) Good luck with your WIP :-)

  11. "Right now, I'm totally sure that my book is going to be awesome, and as soon as I finish making it so, everyone else will agree." Yes. I love this. I agree with all you said, including the part about contemporary. Though it's very big right now I really have no interest in writing it. Ever. (Sometimes I think you're inside my head.)