Are there and Book Editors here at mn?

(66 Posts)
KerryMum Wed 05-Mar-08 11:00:22

particularly novels.

PeatBog Wed 05-Mar-08 11:55:20

yes, fence, it was 'upstairs' at the time, now all over the shop after the 'reorganisation'

KerryMum Wed 05-Mar-08 11:55:45

is it as hard to get published here as in the States?

KerryMum Wed 05-Mar-08 11:56:14

I have friends in the States who say it is virtually impossible to even get an agent.

policywonk Wed 05-Mar-08 11:56:26

100x! What were you doing at RH?

KerryMum Wed 05-Mar-08 11:56:28

would agents be used much over here?

Threadworm Wed 05-Mar-08 11:59:39

Yes I think agents are much used here. And it's hard evebn to get them to pay attention to your stuff.

UnquietDad Wed 05-Mar-08 12:00:12

I'm not an expert on the US market, but it's hard to get published anywhere.

An agent has to love your work and take you on. My agent has taken on one new person in the past year or so. Then they have to get an editor who loves your work too, and who can persuade all their colleagues it is wonderful. Then they have to get it past Sales and Marketing.

Then if you finally get a contract it will be for a paltry advance which you think must be missing a zero somewhere.

And a year later, they smuggle the book on to the shelves under cover of darkness, hide it in the back of the shop in the wrong section - if you are lucky enough to get it in any shops at all - and it will sell 727 copies. They know this because they have only printed 1000 and expect 25% of them to come back. They then tell you it is your fault that the book wasn't commercial enough to sell well. And drop you.

Meanwhile your friends bang on about JK fucking Rowling all the time and you want to shove their heads in the oven.

KerryMum Wed 05-Mar-08 12:00:51

coughing fit from blowing off the cobwebs but here it goes....

PeatBog Wed 05-Mar-08 12:01:19

Yes, agents are very much used over here. Most books that get published - the vast majority in fact - come through agents. I'm so out of touch, I wouldn't know which agent is best for a supernatural thriller, but you need to send it to the right sort.

Once you've worked out who that might be, though, it will (eventually) get read.

also, re your previous queries, don't worry about having to get your own work copyedited at this stage - the pubs will look after all of that once they've taken you on.

fencesitter Wed 05-Mar-08 12:01:30

PeatBog, you must be massively in demand if you can charge £20 an hour for copy-editing fiction! I thought I was doing well getting £18 [considers re-invoicing current job]. Hmph!

policywonk Wed 05-Mar-08 12:02:25

I'm afraid UQD is very much on the button with that analysis.

snowleopard Wed 05-Mar-08 12:05:17

Ha ha UD! I'm a writer/editor (not fiction though so haven't got much to contribute here) and I live in the same area of Edinburgh as JK.

I have heard "Oh so you are like JK Rowling then... you must be friends with her!" about 100 million times.

No I'm not. No I don't. And if I could compare myself to her don't you think I would have a slightly larger house?

KerryMum Wed 05-Mar-08 12:05:18

oh missed that post UQD. sad

Still I will persist.

Have been writing since a child and has always been what I KNEW I must be doing with my life.

Life has just waylaid me for 10 years or so.

But it's time.

If I knew an established author can I ask for help or is that not a done thing?

PeatBog Wed 05-Mar-08 12:05:21

UQD, sadly yes.

Fence, £20/hr is for on-screen, major editing ('change whatever you want' hmm), which saves them money on typesetting, and which I seem to be doing more and more (tis tres dull deleting commas and spaces).

Otherwise it varies, but around £18.

KerryMum Wed 05-Mar-08 12:05:49

have won silly school awards and the like for my writing.

snowleopard Wed 05-Mar-08 12:10:06

UD is right in general KerryMum, but still, you've written the thing which is a major step, and I wouldn't give up hope.

Get a copy of the Writers' and Artists' Yearbook and select some publishers and agents and send them a one-page summary and the first three chapters. Send to lots of people and don't hang about waiting for replies - but you might hear from some.

Also, if you want to write, working on your next novel is a good idea - if an agent or publisher likes you they'll be hoping you do more.

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