In my spare time, what little I have of it, I occasionally pick up my 2009 Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market book and search for potential buyers for my series The Price of Innocence. Why? I guess it’s a vain attempt to convince myself the grass is greener on the other side of the fence and I’m worthy in the eyes of my traditional published peers who raise their brow over my “vanity.” (I think I need counseling – LOL).
It took me 18 months to write my first fiction work. I contribute that lengthy time to my agonizing over the story, research, writing, and editing of my debut novel. Of course, that included a period of self-doubt, loss of interest, writer’s block, and trepidation. When I finally finished and sent it to Xlibris, one month later it was available for purchase.
For self-affirmation (as if my great five-star reviews on Barnes & Noble are not enough right now), I occasionally look for a place to send it off to a traditional publisher to pick up the three-book series. If you’re going to dream big, you might as well dream big. However, I’m appalled at the information I find in the Writer’s Market as to time lines for reviews.
• Response to query – 1 to 4 months
• Response to manuscripts – 3 to 8 months
• Published book after acceptance of manuscript – 6 to 18 months
Even today, if by some odd chance I received a contract, I wouldn’t see my book in print or on the shelf of a bookstore for another 18 months or longer. I’ll be a victim of corporate “budgets.” In the meantime while I’m waiting for release, I’ll will not make one dime.
However, today, my book has been released, and it was my “budget” that put it out there a heck of a lot quicker than a traditional publisher. I’m getting quarterly checks from sales now – not two to three years in the future. Even if I received an advance, only the good Lord knows how long I would have to wait to receive another royalty check (paying me a less than what I make now).
Someone tell me the sense in this logic, please! I still don’t see it. All I can say, if a traditional publisher does like my work and they shove a contract under my nose, I’m going to negotiate that I not be required to pull my book from the market for 18 months waiting to be re-publish under their name. What a fool I’d be! I guess my current real-life career as a paralegal with a title of “Contract Specialist” will pay off! (I don’t need an agent to understand legal contract language.)
Well, enough ranting. My next royalty check should be coming in a few weeks, while possible traditional publishing houses fiddle around with my manuscript.