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Hello, I'm new and need advice please!!

Discussion in 'Publishing' started by Addiena, Oct 18, 2011.


    Addiena New Member

    Oct 18, 2011
    Hello everybody. I've ready a few threads on here and you all seem the right people to point me in the right direction!!

    I have been writing at home for many years now for my own pleasure, simply because I enjoy writing. :) I finished my first full novel which my daughter read and loved, and subsequently passed around her friends who also enjoyed it. I have since written a second one based around the same characters which has gone down equally well, and have recently started a third. The first two already completed can stand alone as individual books although all three are about the same characters.

    Consequently my friends and family think I should be sending them off to see if I can get them published. But where to start???? I have never gone down this route before so have no idea how this works or who to approach!

    My books are fantasy, but are aimed at the younger reader rather than adults- my daughter read the first one when she was 10 and is almost 15 now and says the books have grown up with her.

    So can anybody advise me in which direction to go? (Most sights I have looked at just say they don't want unsolicited manuscripts) And is there an agent or published that would specialise in older children's fantasy?

    Any help and advice is very much appreciated and sorry for going on!!:D

    Thanks for reading!
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2011

    HareBrain Lagomorphing Staff Member

    Oct 13, 2008
    Poshville, West Sussex
    "How to get published" is a huge topic, and probably the best place to start (in the UK) is to get yourself an up-to-date edition of the Writers' and Artists' Yearbook. This will not only give you a list of agents and publishers, their specialisms and sometimes their submission requirements, but also includes a lot of useful advice on the subject in general. Once you've absorbed that, you'll be better placed to search this and other sites for answers to more specific questions you might have.

    Hope that helps!
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2011
    The Judge

    The Judge Truth. Order. Moderation. Staff Member

    Nov 10, 2008
    nearly the New Forest
    Hello and Welcome to the Chrons!

    Congratulations on writing -- and finishing -- two books! That is a great achievement. However, can I suggest that before you start submitting to agents, you have the first book read by someone who isn't family. Friends and loved ones are naturally biased and will love everything you have written -- that's their job after all! Unless they are themselves professionals, though, they will not know what is needed in terms of character development, story arc etc etc.

    Getting a book published by professionals is very difficult, and you will only have one chance with an agent. It is therefore vital that you make the book the best you can before sending it out.

    We have a Critiques section here, but it is only open to members with a minimum of 30 counted posts. What I suggest is that you settle in, read around lots of the threads we have about query letters and synopses -- which you will have to learn all about! -- and generally immerse yourself in the site. Then in due course put a piece of your first book up and we can give you preliminary advice. From that you might find someone who is willing to read the whole book and help you further and/or point you in the direction of a writers' group which will be invaluable.

    I know that this seems a very long-winded process and contrary to what your friends think is a good idea, but publishing is a business and the best way to succeed is to approach it as such.

    Anyway, I'm glad you've found us -- why don't you go over to Introductions and you can be welcomed officially into the Chrons family!

    Addiena New Member

    Oct 18, 2011

    Thanks the advice- at least now I've got somewhere to start!:)

    I forgot to mention that I have actually sent email copies of my first book to two local schools where I know the teachers (I am a qualified teaching assistant), but I kept my name off it so the children didn't know it was by me. And it has proven to be very popular I am informed so it is this really that has encouraged me to actually thinking about doing something properly.

    I knew it would be a long, difficult and potentially impossible journey which is why I asked for help! So the advice is much apprecited and I will follow it all through.


    Tirellan Active Member

    Jul 4, 2007
    The good news is that the market for Middle Grade and Young Adult fantasy is pretty strong at the moment. Certainly look at the Writers and Artists Yearbook, consider joining the SCBWI (UK section here http://www.britishscbwi.org/ ) and think also about whether your books would work in the US market, which is very much larger.
    I thoroughly endorse the advice given to get the books read by people who are able to offer critique. That many kids have loved them is very encouraging and suggests that you have good stories, but you'd be surprised by how much better they could become.

    TheEndIsNigh ...Prepare Thyself

    Mar 16, 2008
    I would add: try looking at some of the critiques from ages past.

    Yeah even unto the beginning of time.

    Better still join in the process. But be sure to read the sticky (always at the top of a page) threads about critiquing and being critiqued.

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