Monday, August 18, 2014

How Do You Figure Out What to Send to Who?

Dear Readers,

If you submit very much, I am sure you have received a rejection letter at least once or twice in your lifetime.

Do you often wonder exactly what a publisher is wanting or needing.

I have received rejection letters that read 'Sorry, but your story isn't right for our list' or 'we feel it does not quite lend itself well to our list,' or 'after careful consideration, we have decided to pass on your manuscript,' or, sometimes the letter will say 'your story isn't quite there yet,' or 'it is charming, but.'


I have gone to their sites. I have gone to Amazon and 'looked inside' their published books, I have read them at the library, etc., to get familiar with what they publish.

But, some publishers publish such a variety of books for children - all quite different - that I have a hard time figuring out just what is 'right' for their list. I don't see a pattern.

Although I very much appreciate getting a rejection letter, since some publishers do not send them out any more if they are not interested in your book, I wish I understood more what the publisher wanted.

Anyone out there with a crystal ball?
How do you work your way through the maze of publishers and figure out what to send to who?

Maybe one answer is to make our story so special that a publisher cannot turn it down, even if it isn't right for their list?

So, until I can do that, I will keep writing, keep revising and keep submitting.


Janet Smart  of the Blackberry Patch

Confused, But Still Love to Write

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Getting My Writing Room Organized - with my Little Library

I have a bookcase!

Well, actually, I have lots of bookcases. But, I now have one for the little walk-through room I call my office.

My office is really our old laundry room where we have a small upright freezer, a pantry, a Hoosier cabinet and other old kitchen stuff ---- and a little enamel top table that I use for a desk.

my bookcase (that I am still getting organized)

shelf filled with various 'writing' books

shelf filled with my 'idea' and reference books

Now, whenever I need to look up anything, all I need to do is roll over in my chair and browse through my little library of helpful books.

Titles of some of my getting idea books are: The Book of Bizarre Truths, Inventions That Changed the World, Kids Say the Darndest Things, Sears Roebuck and Co. 1909 Catalog, Scholastic Book of Lists, American Nicknames, Garfield's Book of Excellent Excuses, Going to School in 1776, What Your 5th Grader Needs to Know, The Quotable American, Mistakes that Worked, 97 Ways to Make a Baby Laugh, American Folklore and Legend, Great Thoughts and Funny Sayings and The Book of Answers, etc.

Some of my writing books are: Various books on writing poetry, Nothing Rhymes with Orange, Writing in History, Writing From Personal Experience, Write your Life Story, Thesauruses, Writing Picture Books, From Inspiration to Publication, Children's Writer's and Illustrator's Market, various Dummy and Idiot books, Creative Writing, Painless Writing, Write Right!, etc.

It was a learning experience just putting the bookcase together :o)

It must be helping, since doing this a few days ago, I have sent in two submissions!

Clutter hurts creativity and output! So I challenge you to get uncluttered.

Are you organized? Do you have your helpful books all in one easy place to get to?

Happy Writing!