Video: Not-So-Frequently Asked Submission Questions

In the same vein as my previous post about less frequently asked questions about querying, I’m now posting the follow-up: Not-So-Frequently Asked Questions about submission for agented authors.


In the video, I answer the following questions:

  • What if it doesn’t sell?
  • Should I research my editors? Should I interact with them?
  • How should I behave online while I’m on submission?
  • How is being on submission different from submitting to agents?
  • What if it DOES sell?
  • What information should the agent be sharing with me while I’m on submission?
  • What do I do to stay calm while I’m on submission?
  • Why does it take so long?
  • What’s the “Big Five”? What’s an imprint?
  • What should I do next if my book doesn’t sell?
  • What does it mean if an editor praises my book but still rejects it?
  • What if the publisher wants to change my title?
  • How do agents pitch books to publishers?
  • Everybody else is getting book deals and I’m not! Is it just never going to happen for me?
  • Can my agent dump me?
  • How important is luck?
  • What about direct submissions to publishers without an agent?
  • What can I expect in terms of an advance?
  • What’s the one piece of advice you would offer to someone who’s newly on submission?

No longer yours

This is far from a new idea–I’ve seen it expressed several times–but now I’m experiencing it myself and I’m going to reflect on it.

When you write a book, get it published, and release it into the wild, it becomes no longer yours.

That may sound like an obvious statement, but the nuances are a little more complex. You know when your work is published that people you don’t know and will never meet are now hearing your words in their heads. You know you’ve made them think about things they wouldn’t have thought if you hadn’t thought them first and written them down. You know your work gets its wings and flies to places you’ve never been, carrying ideas in its wake, spreading messages far and wide.

But what’s really interesting about it is seeing people treating it like it’s . . . well, something other than your weird little baby. Reacting to it like it’s public property–because it is. Reviewing it positively and discussing its potential influence on academic mattersPosting quotes from it that they found inspirational and getting hundreds of people to share them with others. Getting excited because their copy arrived and taking pictures of it to blog and tweet. Seeing it criticized and seeing others get my backRecommending it to people to help understand themselves and each other. Telling personal stories about why my book is important to them.

It’s mine, but it’s not just mine anymore.

The book has become part of the conversation. Part of the world. Part of the fabric of existence as we go on from here. It’s something others can access to inform their lives, and it’s something that is now being casually recommended to strangers by other strangers so they can understand an experience we’ve all had. These people have oftentimes paid money for the privilege of letting me “talk” to them for an appreciable length of time. My words were taken seriously, digested, enjoyed, passed on. They are being read now. They will continue to be in the future.

And for many of the people who read it, who I am as a person isn’t actually important. So many readers absorb the content of a book without even thinking about the person who wrote it, without thinking about why they wrote it, without trying to connect to that person (even though they’ve done so in a pretty intimate way if you ask us). The way they think of us sometimes, if they don’t know us in person or online, is just as content generators–a disembodied set of words and opinions that made a thing and sold the thing.

I like that.

No, not because I like being dehumanized or separated from my content, or because I don’t like when people DO try to connect personally (because I do like that), but because now they don’t have to know me to hear my words. They don’t have to be part of my world for me to be part of theirs.

It’s a good feeling.

Published Book: The Invisible Orientation

Well, I did it, folks. The Invisible Orientation: An Introduction to Asexuality is published.

BookCoverIt is now possible to buy it anywhere you want to; I’ve made a list of places I’ve found selling it on my Purchase Page.

Are you interested in seeing its reviews so far? Check it out on Goodreads and Amazon, or look at some of the featured reviews on its page here.

AND if you want to, you can get an autograph for your copy. I am making bookplates available to buy online and have me sign for you, or you can do Authorgraph if you want a signature for your eBook.

I would love for folks to order it to their libraries or check into whether their schools can get it for sexuality and psychology resources. If you’d like an easy-to-print flier to give to someone who can order books for your library or institution, I have the DOC or the PDF available for you!

I hope everyone likes it as much as I liked writing it. 🙂

 

Interview: Left to Write

Dannie Morin interviewed me for her “Awesomesauce Authors” feature on her blog, Left to Write. It’s a great little article on my experience as an asexual author, discussing my writer’s journey, what inspired me to write the book, my favorite and least favorite things about writing, what I love about my book and what was challenging about writing it, what has surprised me about the publishing journey so far, and a few fun personal questions.

Read the interview on Dannie’s blog!

 

New Video: Rejection

Now for a video on one of the most universal subjects for authors: REJECTION.

In this video I discuss my personal rejection experiences, share my first rejection letter and laugh over my most condescending one, and give you an idea of how and in what capacity I’ve been rejected over the years–from the perspective of a person who did eventually get to “yes.”

Published Short Story: “Your Terms”

“Your Terms” was published in Timeless Tales today.

Read it here.

pandorasbox

As you should be able to tell from this cover, Timeless Tales is a fairy tale magazine and all of the stories for this issue are Pandora’s Box–inspired. It’s the last story in the pack, with a page following it that explains my inspiration along with some bio stuff. My contribution takes an unusual look at Hope, casting her as a modern woman with a case of agoraphobia. The story makes a point about invisible disability/illness and why it’s so important for people to stop framing such things in the context of “inspiration” for others. People with illnesses and disabilities need their stories and lives to be about themselves.

Accepted short story: “Her Mother’s Child”

My coming-of-age fantasy short story “Her Mother’s Child,” written in October 2013, was just accepted for publication by Kaleidotrope. It’s a mother/daughter tale set in a secondary world, with interwoven themes of growing up, parent/child relationships, goddess culture, elemental magic, and ladies who love ladies.

I’m told it will not be published until 2015, but I’m patient! Hope you are too, lovely readers.

Cover: The Invisible Orientation

Looks like my book has been assigned a cover!

BookCoverThis may not be the final design, actually, but for now it’s representing the book on Amazon and Goodreads and other book-selling sites, and if it changes I’ll give you that news too! For right now it’s what my distributor will see at a conference, I’m told, so we’ll see if they have input and if they do it might get a different design.