Thursday, January 24, 2013

Thursday Q&A

This is a question I get a lot:

How do I know who to submit to if my story crosses different genres?

First, and most important, do your homework.  Research the publisher(s) you want to submit to in order to confirm they take ALL the genres within your story. This will ensure the best possible chance for your manuscript and may immediately eliminate a few from your query list. For example, your romance story involves a vampire hero and a mystery at a church; there is love scenes and an inspirational message. Chances are Christian publishers probably won’t take vampire stories, and a number don’t accept descriptive love scenes, so that is one off your list.

Once you have the list of the publishers accepting your cross genres, see if there are certain editors for specific genres and make note of each.

Now, decide which genre is most prominent in your story. Based on the above manuscript, even though the mystery might be strong, I would suggest submitting to the editor in charge of paranormal first, as a vampire hero is a pretty major genre setter.

If there is not a specific editor noted on the site to submit to for this genre (as in the publisher has one main submission email) then make sure you note the stronger genre first, mentioning the others within your query. This way, the submissions editor has an easier time making sure it gets to the right department right away.

All in all, most publishers are good about passing along manuscripts to the proper editors, but doing your homework, as in the above, will give your manuscript the best chance…and that is the main goal.



Questions about writing, editing or the publishing process?  No question is too little, too silly or should be too embarrassing to ask--knowledge is the key that opens many doors. So, go ahead and ask me:

If I use your question on my blog, I will send you a fun-stuffed envelope as a thank you.