Would be authors often ask us one of two questions – 1) How do I get published? and 2) What are you looking for in a submission? Here are some of our answers as well as tips we’ve learned over the years from authors, editors and publishers. They are in no particular order. (The third thing people always say when they find out we are publishers is that they’ve always wanted to write a book.)
How to Get Published
1. Write – this may seem obvious, but often isn’t. Many writers bandy about the acronym BIC – Butt In Chair. You can’t write a book unless you actually sit down and do the work.
2. Write some more. The first thing you write won’t be very good. You will have to revise a lot. And then revise again.
3. Join a writers group. They will help you hone your craft and give you constructive feedback on your work.
4. Go to writers conferences. You will meet other writers and learn from published authors, agents, and editors. You may also have an opportunity to submit your writing directly to the editors and agents at the conference.
5. Have your work professionally edited. This is very important. You want to put your best foot forward as you may not get a second chance.
6. Write a really good cover letter.
7. Write a really good synopsis.
8. Research agents and publishers to find those who are looking for the type of book that you’ve written. Do waste your time sending your chick-lit novel to an agent who represents thrillers or mysteries only.
9. Submit your work according to the guidelines of the agent or publisher that you’ve selected.
10. Start work on your next book.
11. Write the book that you are meant to write. Don’t try to follow the latest trend because it will be over by the time your book gets published.
What is Luminis looking for in a submission
1. The first thing we look for is quality writing. If your cover letter sucks, then it goes to reason that your book might suck, too! (See #’s 6&7 above)
2. The second thing we look for is a story that is compelling. Is this something that we want to read? Is it interesting and meaningful – (see our tagline)?
3. When we are reading your ten page submission or manuscript, does it make sense, does the story flow, do I want to continue reading?
4. Are the characters well developed?
5. Luminis publishes meaningful fiction that entertains, so that means we aren’t really looking for chick-lit or mysteries, or adventure stories or crime novels.
6. Be patient – the publishing world moves slowly.
7. Be persistent. Keep on submitting your work and follow-up on your submissions (although you may never hear from some of the agents and publishers.
This list isn’t exhaustive or definitive, but we hope it is helpful! If you’ve written a good book, then it will get published!