The Curtain Pulled Back: What Publishing House Editors Say about Your Next Book
Every November is National Novel Writing Month. Tens of thousands of writers bang out a novel in a month and they think, “Great! I’m done! Now, I can get it published!”
But even if you’ve managed to crank out a great story in just thirty days, getting published is far from a done deal. Publishers are looking for work that meets a certain standard; they are looking at books on multiple levels, with an eye toward how it can be successful and how they can move a book out into the marketplace. There are lots of quality issues to deal with, so publishers and editors can get a little persnickety.
Here’s what New York Times bestselling author Mike Bender has to say about the subject:
“They’re seeing the bigger picture,” Mike says. “They know exactly what’s out there, and they know what the trends are. They know the books in their own library that are being published.”
When Mike sent his second manuscript to his editor, she thought it was a great story, but she also remembered what made Mike’s first book so successful.
“She took me back to the first book and said, ‘Well, what I really loved in that book is that there was an educational aspect to it. Like, you were teaching the kids about this concept’,” Mike says.
“So I had to rethink the way I was writing the book,” he says, “and the manuscript we ended up writing was (geared more toward) teaching it to the kids. There had to be an educational aspect to this book for libraries to want to pick it up in schools. And that’s not something, as a writer, I was thinking about. I was just thinking about story.”
That’s the kind of thing we’re doing over in the Writing Gym. We take good writing and not only help you make it better, but we work with you to make sure your novel meets industry standards.
If you’re serious about getting your work published, I’d love to chat with you. You can book yourself into my calendar, and we can talk about where you are, where you’d like to go, and how you can get there.
Until next time, Happy Writing!