June 10th, 2009

Going Pro 101

This guy really hates agents...

Interesting reading. I don't know this author, although he says he's sold 90 books. He seems to really dislike agents.

And yet, if you read around his grumpy-coloured glasses, there's some interesting stuff here.

Sure the agent works for the writer, in the same way your doctor or your professor works for you. The employee/employer relationship as an anology is inexact.

The comments to his post are rather rah rah, but I'd be inclined to say, hey, wait a minute. Sure, I can (and have) sold my own book, but chances are, a good agent can do it better. Of the deals listed in Publishers Weekly, how many are self-negotiated? (And maybe that's because self-negotiated deals don't get written up.) I'd like to get an agent--a good agent--before I write them off as unnecessary.

What do you think?

Market news: Torquere and Dorchester

From Cynthia Sterling's latest newsletter: ("As always, feel free to pass along this newsletter. If any part of it is reproduced or quoted, please give me credit. Anyone can sign up for the newsletter by sending a blank email to CynthiaSterling-subscribe@yahoogroups.com")

Torquere Press is launching a new Pulp Fiction line. The editors are looking for novels of 50,000 to 70,000 words " with true pulp novel / penny-dreadful themes.. Sci-Fi, western, mystery, even beach blanket parties and desert-island castaways - bring it on... We're looking for campy, over the top themes, but framed with solid writing and solid characterization." The books will be published in both ebook and print format. Please send queries, questions and manuscripts to submissions@torquerepress.com with Hard Liquor in the subject line. Note: "All submissions must contain gay, lesbian or transgendered characters. While works do not need to be graphic, they must contain homosexual romance and focus on the interaction between characters." Find all the information at http://www.torquerepress.com/submissions/hardliquor.html


Dorchester is also behind another innovative contest for unpublished writers. Authors ages 18 and older are invited to participate in America’s Next Best Celler, a literary challenge that pairs the emergent cellular generation with the traditional publishing model. The contest will award a guaranteed publishing contract with Dorchester. America’s Next Best Celler utilizes Textnovel’s unique business model that allows authors and readers to create, read and share serialized fiction via today’s most popular and ubiquitous technologies. The site encourages readers to subscribe to developing works of fiction which are disseminated in chapter-length installments via cell phones and email over a period of time. Subscribers offer direct feedback to authors and vote for their favorite serials. 

Dorchester is seeking contest entries in any of the following romantic sub-genres: historical, paranormal, urban fantasy, high fantasy, futuristic, romantic suspense or humorous contemporary. For complete contest details, including rules and regulations, please visit http://www.dorchesterpub.com/contests.html or http://www.textnovel.com/.

Dorchester Publishing is now accepting submissions via email. Find all the guidelines at http://www.dorchesterpub.com/Dorch/SubmissionGuidlines.cfm


Leisure Books is partnering with Rue Morgue magazine in association with horror fiction web site ChiZine, to present “Fresh Blood,” a new writing contest specifically for unpublished horror authors. The winner will receive a contract for publication in Leisure’s 2011 lineup, as well as a contract from ChiZine Publications for a limited-edition hardcover release, also in 2011.

Leisure is looking for finished horror novel manuscripts, either supernatural or non-supernatural, of 80,000–90,000 words. A panel of experts, including Leisure Executive Editor Don D’Auria and editors at ChiZine, will judge entries. The finalists will be announced in November 2009.

Entries should be sent to Submissions@dorchesterpub.com by September 30, 2009. “Fresh Blood” must appear in the subject line of the email. For full entry details, visit www.dorchesterpub.com or www.chizine.com. Leisure Books is an imprint of Dorchester Publishing and publishes two horror titles every month by authors such as Richard Laymon, Jack Ketchum, Brian Keene, and Sarah Pinborough. ChiZine Publications publishes the same kind of weird, subtle, surreal, disturbing dark fiction and fantasy that ChiZine (the magazine) has become known for over the past ten years, only in longer form—novels and short story collections.