Before I get into full swing on Pt. 2, I have a couple things to talk about.
1. Sorry for this post being a day late. I started a new blog yesterday, The Disney Honeymoon Challenge, and all my spare time found itself wound up in designing and posting over there.
2. I wanted to talk a little about audience. This blog, for instance, has a pretty limited audience. It’s intended for writers. Whether they write blogs, fiction, or nonfiction doesn’t much matter, but the blog focuses on writing topics, so that’s who it’s geared for. I imagined that, on WordPress, writers would be quite a broad audience. But, the new blog has already seen more views in a day than this one has ever seen in one day. And here’s my thoughts why.
First of all, it’s Disney. Disney is a huge, extremely recognizable name. It also is generally loved. Millions of people are obsessed by all things Disney. Myself included. So, there’s that. But it’s also about relationships, love, and marriage, and how these things are reflected in Disney films. Suddenly I have a blog that is relatable to just about everyone. And it shows.
Already I’ve had several people ask me if the new blog’s initial success makes me feel bad about this blog. The answer is, ‘no’. They are two totally different animals. And the writing blog is more for my own well-being and understanding of my craft.
The Disney blog is for fun!
But, having two blogs is definitely time consuming. Already I’m wondering if I’ve bitten off more than I can chew, but I’m not one for giving up. I’ll find a way to balance two blogs, writing, editing, wedding planning, and 40 hour work weeks…
Now, back to Lecture #10!
We left off talking about Agents. What they do, and what to look out for when you go about acquiring one. But now, let’s talk about the Arguments Against Agents.
The Eternal Rewrite.
—-> How much time do you want to give to this Agent? If you’re editing before they’ll agree to represent your work, you’re not getting paid. So set limits. How many rewrites are you willing to do for this Agent? Do you agree with what they’re saying about your manuscript?
—-> Send to other Agents while you revise for this one. Don’t limit yourself.
Incentive to Go Bigger.
—-> They might not fight to get that extra money.
—-> You need to know the business, demand rejection letters, know where and to whom they’re sending your work.
—-> Be proactive, work with your Agent
Remember, an Agent is there to give you advice, NOT manage your career.
Getting a good Agent is about the same as getting published. But, keep in mind that Sci-Fi/Fantasy Houses tend to do their own quirky stuff, an Agent may not even be necessary.
Brandon then realized that we probably don’t have much understanding of the Book Market, so he broke it down for us.
Nonfiction > Fiction
Children’s > Adult
Romance > Everything Else
Thrillers > Everything Else
And Sci-Fi/Fantasy is WAAAAAAY down here. But, Sci-Fi/Fantasy tends to be very open to new authors.
You need to be an expert on Publishing Houses and Genres. The more you know, the better your chances.
And then there’s a little tidbit: 40% of people who buy a book online have looked at a physical copy in a bookstore.
So, Brandon lists Sci-Fi/Fantasy Publishers:
Simon & Scheuster
Look up Editors, look at the books they’re producing—-> Buy them, read them, learn what they’re looking for. Also, pay attention to Book Labels. Who are your favorite books published by? Read the acknowledgments.
Knowing specific editors at TOR is very important, they are basically autonomous, and publish things they like.
So, how do you get to know editors and agents?
Go to conventions!
—-> see them at panels
—-> ask them detailed questions about what they’re working on
Big cons that you need to start attending are:
World Fantasy Convention
The Nebula Weekend
See if an Editor you like writes a blog, if they do read it, leave comments!
Also, there are submission guidelines for a reason. Read them, understand them, and adhere to them. Don’t get your manuscript tossed without being read because you didn’t use the right font.
Someone in the class asked if they should register a copyright before sending their manuscript out. Brandon laughed. Basically, your work is NOT going to get stolen in New York. Publishers want your skill, not your ideas.
Remember, ideas are cheap.
So, don’t register a copyright, it immediately labels you as a noob.
And then Brandon said something that made me happy. He said we should be doing it all. We should be writing short stories and getting them published, while submitting our longer works to Publishers as well as Agents. Do it all!
I then wrote, ‘Google this shit. This is hard, but you have to do it.’ Obviously, Brandon didn’t drop the S-word in his lecture, but occasionally, I leave motivating messages to myself.
Anyway, I’ve ignored ‘The Portrait’ for a few days, and I need to get back to it.
Have a great day, Blogland!