I Am Not A Wall

Posted: 20th April 2011 by onyxhawke in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

There are times when I become convinced that people who send me their work think they are trying to cook spaghetti and not get a book published. These people have me half convinced my submission guidelines are all written using Polish words, Bantu grammar, and that they still only appear on my website about as often as one can find Brigadoon, and even then only in .10th font. The occasional paranormal romance wouldn’t and doesn’t bother me, those are marketed so similarly to urban fantasy its often a judgment call as to which label to Spackle on it.

What irks me, gets my dander up and turns be into a powderkeg faster than you can play Brass Monkey, is people who just throw stuff at me to see if it will stick. Honestly, I’m as prepared to parse good late imperial Japanese death haiku as I am Edwardian romances and sending either of them to me just gets me cheesed off. Also, sending me railroad tales of bygone days will rile me up faster than Ricky Ricardo when Lucy has some’splainin’ to do. Just so we’re clear my hackles will rise, and I’ll likely get carried away with myself the next time I see something from someone asking me to represent their kids Biblical study guide.

Look, I know People Are Strange and that the stress of failing to get their book published quickly is something that will put a burr under any ones saddle  But please don’t pass it like a hot potato as if it were gonna stand on a turnbuckle rip off its trademark catch line and dump a brewskie down its throat.  But good times are just around the corner, and I’m sure that not only will I be able to go dozens of submissions without getting something by a writer in a league of their own but that many of my readers will be published.

  • So I should mix my novel with FluoroEtch so it sticks? 😉

    • You'd have a better shot than some of what I get.

  • Are you saying you think I'm high?

    • This begs for a High Ones joke, but I don't know if you know Pini Elves…

      • Pini? They sound sharp.

        • Well, that's a matter of oPinion… O;>

          • Is that the same company as Epinion?

            • Don't think so. Though an initial blurring of letters had me wondering about epipenions, which would presumably be opinions about devices to treat allergies…

  • Hm. So the novel about the Brass Monkey owned by Strange People eating Hot Potatoes and Spaghetti in an Edwardian railroad carriage of bygone days (just from the hints in your post above) is unlikely to find favour in your court, I take it… [grin]

    • Well, if its a steampunk, I suppose it might make the cut…

  • I have two comments on this because I am wearing two hats.
    Firstly, I had the fortune to get through to the second round of your slush pile competition a couple or years or so back. I found your comments enormously helpful and have now cleared these problems. However, it is only common courtesy to present the best work one thinks one has and in the best condition one can get it into at that time. This involves following the guidelines and reading what sort of genre the agent is interested in acquiring. And yep, I am still honing the book, now reduced in size and a great deal better, in part very much thanks to you.
    Secondly, I have been an online editor of a magazine for around eight years. During that time I have seen countless inappropriate submissions made because people did not read the guidelines as to content suitability. These stories would have then been out of circulation for a month to six weeks before being rejected. I have also seen many submissions from people not willing or able to proofread. Yep, this can be corrected if the story is beyond stellar and a must buy, but generally this was not the case. I so hear you on the spaghetti cooking.
    People don't seem to remember that the big name authors, like Stephen King, did not make it overnight. There was a whole lot of work,learning the craft, and dedication involved. Added to that is catching the right market at the right time. I would add to that not irritating agents by jumping the gun and inflicting them with stuff that has not been workshopped or critiqued by offline groups or persons.
    Sending you a cyberspace beer in sympathy.

    • Glad to know my comments helped.
      And thanks for the suds, a talk, dark and cool stout is just the thing.

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