While most publishers will accept a manuscript in digital format it seems that our prospective literary agent will not. He attributes this to the natural inclination of Literary Agents to read while lying as supine as possible, their head and shoulders elevated just enough to see a television or read a printed page. Preferably a single printed page at a time so they don’t strain themselves. With all the reading they have to do it’s hard to blame them for this.
So yesterday we installed a new ink cartridge, fired up the printer and printed out a hardcopy of ‘Rage of Angels,’ boxed it neatly and sent it winging it’s way to New York. Now we wait with breath that smells of bait… uh… something like that anyway.
Linda found this process very exciting; this is the first time that we have sent an actual manuscript to an actual literary agent for the purpose of selling it to an actual publisher. Not that 47North isn’t an ‘actual publisher,’ just that the work we did for them was written ‘for hire’ and did not go through a conventional submission process. Our novel is self-published, so again no process. Etc. So it’s the first time we’ve printed a novel out and submitted it, and that makes it seem real and professional to her. Honestly to me it seemed like a bit of a pain and an unneeded expense, but I have since come around to seeing it her way.
Especially when we looked over the Agent’s website and realized he’s not taking new clients but has apparently made an exception for us and some of the other Foreworld authors. OK, now I feel special. And not in the ‘short-bus-and-yellow-helmet’ way, either. That’s a nice change.
Honestly we were really torn about going the traditional publishing route with this novel. There are advantages and disadvantages to doing so, and compared to self-publishing it’s pretty much a wash in the long run. But self-publishing means that we get product out as it becomes available instead of on a publisher’s schedule and we retain complete creative control (which in itself is a double-edged sword.) But we told an agent that we would show it to him and likewise there is an editor that wants to see it, so traditional it is.
But there is an undeniable ‘cred’ to having your work put out by a recognizable publisher; it’s like receiving a ‘stamp of approval.’ A big publisher also does something for you that you just can’t accomplish with a self-pubbed eBook. They put your book on shelves across the country, where new readers can discover you by accident. That’s worth a lot.
Regardless that is the road we’re on with this one. We’ll see how it works out and or course keep you posted.