Best story of my recent publishing conference? It’s someone else’s story so I’ll skim over the details. Long story short: Agents rejected a Margaret Atwood story. They didn’t know it was Margaret Atwood. We say it over and over:
PUBLISHING IS A SUBJECTIVE BUSINESS.
However, if you don’t follow submission guidelines, you hurt your chances. If you’re submitting to an agent, ignore the Writer’s Market books and go straight to the agent’s website. Follow their instructions as best you can. The rules apply to new writers. They apply to you. No exceptions. You’re trying to enter a business relationship with publishers and agents. Do not try gimmicks. White paper (or non-wallpapered email) and business forms. No pestering. No sense of entitlement.
Just submit, submit, submit.
Next post: HOW TO FIGURE OUT TO WHOM YOU SHOULD SUBMIT YOUR MANUSCRIPT.