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View Full Version : 100% rejections for non-fiction book, but not sure why! How do I get answers?



nancyadams
10-22-2007, 04:48 AM
I'm curious. I have a strong platform via a website with an international reach and wide interest. I'm not a professional writer, but have writing skills. I've reworked my query four times to what I think is very good. I've had 6 bites. Yet, my score is 100 to 0....in favor of the rejections. And I have no idea why!! I've asked--no response.

How does a person find out? I ponder: Is it because there are already books out on the subject? Are my writing skills not up to par? Do they think there's not a large enough market (even though there is and I present statistics)?

:Shrug:How do I find out why I keep getting rejections?

Nancy

bookfreakguy
10-22-2007, 05:00 AM
These are rejections from agents or publishers?

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 05:06 AM
These are rejections from agents or publishers?

Agents: 98%

JoNightshade
10-22-2007, 05:09 AM
Nancy, what's your website traffic like? I'm wondering if you might be quoting a number that sounds big to you but just isn't big enough that it would be significant to agents.

veinglory
10-22-2007, 05:10 AM
If the email rejections were vague you might try a follow up just asking for some expert hints on what you could improve.

K1P1
10-22-2007, 05:11 AM
Have you gotten someone knowledgeable, that you trust, to review and critique your query letter? Or posted it in Share Your Work for comments?

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 05:25 AM
Nancy, what's your website traffic like? I'm wondering if you might be quoting a number that sounds big to you but just isn't big enough that it would be significant to agents.

On the website, which is just over a year old, I currently have 5000 hits daily, of which 1000 are unique. But....my topic involves strongly estimated 100 million just in the US, Canada, and developed European countries. The topic really goes beyond my website. It shocks me that I would get such across-the-board rejections when I see non-fiction books on the shelf with titles like "How to wear makeup". :ROFL: :Shrug:

Nancy

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 05:27 AM
Have you gotten someone knowledgeable, that you trust, to review and critique your query letter? Or posted it in Share Your Work for comments?

Yes, I have. My query is now top-notch. And I give statistics of the large body of potential readers, of PhD's who would be glad to recommend my book, of the website...it's maddening and bizarre.

Nancy

johnrobison
10-22-2007, 05:30 AM
Well, with all due respect . . . something is missing from this story. With 1,000 people coming to your site every day, and a topnotch query, I don't see why you don't have more positive response either.

Without more knowledge of your query, site, subject . . . there is not much more anyone can say . . .

bookfreakguy
10-22-2007, 05:33 AM
I wish I had a simple answer for you. I sent my query to 25 different agents. Agent No. 25 finally took it - a very reputable agent, too. Go figure, after 24 rejections (none of which told me why, unless it was because "we're not taking on new clients at this time."). Now my agent has sent the ms to publishers and the first six have rejected it. This is my first book, so I'm happy that I've reached the point I have, but to try and figure agents/publishers out is a book in itself.

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 05:36 AM
If the email rejections were vague you might try a follow up just asking for some expert hints on what you could improve.

I started to do that a few weeks ago....and was ignored. I even had one agent's assistant tell me she LOVED the book, and would be glad to tell me how I might "improve" it on her own time based on the agents she tried hard to convince....but never heard back from her.

Really maddening. In addition to the questions I mentioned pondering on above, I find myself also asking: is too much information on the website for free? Yet, I make it clear that there is more in the book than on the website.

Or, it there something going on in the agents' worlds or publishing business that I don't get?? WHY would a book that is unlike ANY other book that had the same topic be so roundly rejected.....and yet there seem to be so many lollipop non-fiction books on brick-and-mortar book shelves??

I don't get it and would LOVE to get SOME kind of answer. :flag:

Nancy

Uncarved
10-22-2007, 05:39 AM
You'd probably need to share a bit more with us instead of us trying to guess. What is the topic? What was your platform other than the website? What makes you an expert on that topic other than the website? More information from you and perhaps we can find the needle in this haystack

Provrb1810meggy
10-22-2007, 05:40 AM
Nancy, have you put your query up on SYW? Even if your query is fabulous, posting it won't hurt. Also, there's a lot of people who think they have great queries, but end up improving them dramatically due to advice on here. I'd give it a shot.

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 05:46 AM
John, I totally understand why you would question it like that. I QUESTION IT!! HOW could I be rejected with such a strong website, a strong subject, and a different perspective that other books out there on the same subject?? There is another author out there who has written about this same subject, and she's very well-known in this particular field. BUT......my work has a different focus, even with the same subject, and is far more hands-on than her work. I find myself falling into stupefied bewilderment, wondering if agents think nothing else needs to be said...or paranoia that there is a conspiracy to keep her as THE author on the subject. :roll:It's maddening. I can only keep saying that.

Nancy


Well, with all due respect . . . something is missing from this story. With 1,000 people coming to your site every day, and a topnotch query, I don't see why you don't have more positive response either.

Without more knowledge of your query, site, subject . . . there is not much more anyone can say . . .

ColoradoGuy
10-22-2007, 05:55 AM
What's your website link?

K1P1
10-22-2007, 05:56 AM
The only thing I can think of is that for some reason the agents/publishers don't think they can sell it. Is there only the one other book on the subject? How is it selling? Are there books on similar topics that are selling well? If you can convince them it's a profitable product and that you are both qualified to and capable of writing the book, then you'll be able to sell the idea. Is it possible that they don't think there's a commercial market for it?

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 06:03 AM
You'd probably need to share a bit more with us instead of us trying to guess. What is the topic? What was your platform other than the website? What makes you an expert on that topic other than the website? More information from you and perhaps we can find the needle in this haystack

I'll tell you: I'd love to share the answers to your questions IF I could do it non-publically..i.e. not right here on a public site. I was once sarcastically criticized by a gal for feeling the need not to be public, and since I can't change how I feel about the need to be private, all that disrespect did was drive me away from writers sites for awhile.

So....if I could find some writers or even a agent or two with experience, who know what it means to be confidential, who will be as tactful as possible to someone with a tender heart, and a place to do it privately, I'm game and interested.

I'm an expert in my field; I have a premier website; I'm not a professional writer but good enough; I'm not a caustic person; and I have competition in this non-fiction field. And...I have a book waiting in the wings that I KNOW has many willing buyers...if only I could figure out WHAT IS GOING ON!

Nancy

johnrobison
10-22-2007, 06:22 AM
It sounds like you have the same feeling of many new or aspiring writers . . . "someone is going to steal my idea!"

I don't know how to assure you that's very very unlikely.

You're not likely to find writers or agents with experience unless you first open up about what it is you want to do.

veinglory
10-22-2007, 06:27 AM
I think follow up emails often get no response, but framed in a certain way (asking for help in improving to approach other people not as a 'second chance', self-deprecating) they can sometimes elicit something useful.

ColoradoGuy
10-22-2007, 06:32 AM
I think follow up emails often get no response, but framed in a certain way (asking for help in improving to approach other people not as a 'second chance', self-deprecating) they can sometimes elicit something useful.
That approach worked for me after my first round of queries got no bites. The tone I strived for was matter-of-fact, respectful, not whiney, but still somehow self-assured. I don't know if I managed that, but several agents who first rejected me did respond, and their responses were invaluable in composing my next round, which scored me an agent.

ColoradoGuy
10-22-2007, 06:34 AM
It sounds like you have the same feeling of many new or aspiring writers . . . "someone is going to steal my idea!"

I don't know how to assure you that's very very unlikely.

You're not likely to find writers or agents with experience unless you first open up about what it is you want to do.
I agree with John. And if you're really at the top of the heap anyway, no one can scoop you.

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 06:43 AM
It sounds like you have the same feeling of many new or aspiring writers . . . "someone is going to steal my idea!"

I don't know how to assure you that's very very unlikely.

You're not likely to find writers or agents with experience unless you first open up about what it is you want to do.

When I mentioned my need to speak of it privately on another group, I got two handfuls of all-knowing assessments as to why I might feel that way...and why I shouldn't feel that way. But all those attempts to arm-lock me into feeling different--don't. lol And that desire not to talk about it on a public website also doesn't take away my desire for feedback, either. Perhaps I should create a private yahoo group and invite those in who are willing to confidentially help a fledgling writer in the way SHE needs it (privately) and who is totally baffled as to why a book like this would be 100% rejected.

Nancy

johnrobison
10-22-2007, 06:48 AM
Since you have 1,000 website visitors daily, why not make the pitch there? They're already aware of what you're about.

I certainly receive all manner of advice and commentary through my site, which has a similar level of traffic

ColoradoGuy
10-22-2007, 06:52 AM
When I mentioned my need to speak of it privately on another group, I got two handfuls of all-knowing assessments as to why I might feel that way...and why I shouldn't feel that way. But all those attempts to arm-lock me into feeling different--don't. lol And that desire not to talk about it on a public website also doesn't take away my desire for feedback, either. Perhaps I should create a private yahoo group and invite those in who are willing to confidentially help a fledgling writer in the way SHE needs it (privately) and who is totally baffled as to why a book like this would be 100% rejected.

Nancy
Perhaps, but I think you're being unfair to us. None of us are all-knowing. You asked for advice, we gave it to the extent we could; but anyone's advice would be better if he or she knew more. After all, it's the details that matter, so please don't fault us for asking for those crucial details.

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 07:15 AM
Perhaps, but I think you're being unfair to us. None of us are all-knowing. You asked for advice, we gave it to the extent we could; but anyone's advice would be better if he or she knew more. After all, it's the details that matter, so please don't fault us for asking for those crucial details.

Umm...ColoradoGuy, there has been no fault-finding from this end as to everyone asking crucial details. Read the above again. Crucial details are apparently needed. What I've been saying is that where crucial details are needed, I in turn need to refrain on a public site, but would be more than willing to discuss privately.

Nancy

ColoradoGuy
10-22-2007, 07:19 AM
Um.. Nancy. I did read your post again. And this is what I read:

. . . I got two handfuls of all-knowing assessments as to why I might feel that way...and why I shouldn't feel that way. But all those attempts to arm-lock me into feeling different--don't.
A lotta guys would read that as a complaint about our responses.

veinglory
10-22-2007, 07:26 AM
Opinions are like gifts. You don't always get what you want, you don't always get what you need, and the truth isn't a democracy. But you can always throw nasty gifts in the trash... when no one is looking.

But I have learned that the editors I argued with the most turned out to be right, and my feelings often wrong.

Susan B
10-22-2007, 07:38 AM
Nancy,

I've faced an uphill climb myself--but I did get an agent and we are close to finalizing things with a publisher. I am not a writer by profession. So I know it can be done.

I understand the wish to be somewhat "anonymous" on a public forum. But it does make it very hard for anyone to give you helpful feedback.

In a post on another thread, you mentioned you were writing a medical book with a "lay" slant. So I would guess the problem with the poor agent response must be one of 3 things:

1) A query that needs re-working

2) A topic (ie, medical issue) that seems to have too limited an audience for the mainstream publishers. Kind of like the terrible fate of people with unusual "orphan" diseases, where there's not enough money for research or even adequate medications. It is unfair--but the inevitable consequence of living in a profit-driven society.

3) A topic (medical issue) that does have broader interest. But then the problem is: Probably others have written about it. What makes your approach unique? What is your "platform"? The basis of your expertise?

In the case of my book (a music memoir, as I've noted) the barrier has been #2. It's a bit esoteric, from the standpoint of editors at "big houses." The answer has been to focus on smaller/independent/university presses, who focus on specialized areas of interest and aren't so restricted by the "bottom line" to the exclusion of all else.

This has been talked about extensively on the "life story" forum. One contributer (with a mental health memoir--and an agent) recently made a deal with a big health publisher--Hazelden/Health Communications, I think. You might check there.

Hope this helps. Also hope you will share a little more info!

Susan

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 08:30 AM
Um.. Nancy. I did read your post again. And this is what I read:

A lotta guys would read that as a complaint about our responses.

If you pulled that sentence out of context with everything else I kept saying....

triceretops
10-22-2007, 08:31 AM
I suffered through 75 rejections on my non-fiction book. Comments came back like "Best outline and proposal I've ever read", "Dinosaurs books always sell", "Excellent writing here--you know your subject." And other such glowing responses. Problem was--no solid platform. Since I was writing about one of the second largest Megafauna Ice Age finds in the U.S., I was told that I had to have a degree in paleontology or geology, AND have several papers or articles already published on the subject.

From what I can glean of your book, it appears to have a medical slant/topic. Do you have a degree in this field? If you don't, get someone who does to co-write, or lay down a hefty recommendation for you. Website hits are NOT going to hack it as a platform, and I don't care if have a million. Have you done any speaking engagements on this?

I suspect that it is a platform problem, but I haven't got too much to go from your information.

My agent gobbles up non-fic all day long and actually prefers it, since his major money deals have been heavy in this area.

Nancy, PM me and we'll talk about a referal. No promises, but my agent will certainly give you the low-down on what's missing, or what's needed.

Tri (Chris)

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 08:33 AM
Opinions are like gifts. You don't always get what you want, you don't always get what you need, and the truth isn't a democracy. But you can always throw nasty gifts in the trash... when no one is looking.

But I have learned that the editors I argued with the most turned out to be right, and my feelings often wrong.

I wish I could find some to argue with. lol. Knowing why the rejections would help. And I wish I had thought of asking then sooner. lol

nancyadams
10-22-2007, 08:37 AM
Susan! Congratulations! :) I'll also check the other forum. Thanks.


Nancy,

I've faced an uphill climb myself--but I did get an agent and we are close to finalizing things with a publisher. I am not a writer by profession. So I know it can be done.

I understand the wish to be somewhat "anonymous" on a public forum. But it does make it very hard for anyone to give you helpful feedback.

In a post on another thread, you mentioned you were writing a medical book with a "lay" slant. So I would guess the problem with the poor agent response must be one of 3 things:

1) A query that needs re-working

2) A topic (ie, medical issue) that seems to have too limited an audience for the mainstream publishers. Kind of like the terrible fate of people with unusual "orphan" diseases, where there's not enough money for research or even adequate medications. It is unfair--but the inevitable consequence of living in a profit-driven society.

3) A topic (medical issue) that does have broader interest. But then the problem is: Probably others have written about it. What makes your approach unique? What is your "platform"? The basis of your expertise?

In the case of my book (a music memoir, as I've noted) the barrier has been #2. It's a bit esoteric, from the standpoint of editors at "big houses." The answer has been to focus on smaller/independent/university presses, who focus on specialized areas of interest and aren't so restricted by the "bottom line" to the exclusion of all else.

This has been talked about extensively on the "life story" forum. One contributer (with a mental health memoir--and an agent) recently made a deal with a big health publisher--Hazelden/Health Communications, I think. You might check there.

Hope this helps. Also hope you will share a little more info!

Susan

sgunelius
10-22-2007, 07:04 PM
What's your website's Technorati rank and Alexa rank? 1,000 visitors a day doesn't mean much without the rank as that's one of the things an agent might check to determine the reach of your site more so than a number of visitors (and 1,000 per day might seem small to some agents).

I have to agree with everyone else that it's impossible to help you without knowing your book's subject and more about your platform. If your website is the only part of your platform, then that would be my guess as to your problem, but again, it's impossible to guess without more information.

How many query letters did you send out in total? You had six bites, but how many in total rejected you based on the query letter? That's important to know to determine where the problem might come from.

Also, are there a lot of other books on the market similar to yours? Are they big sellers? Can you give us the title of a similar book on the market?

Again, it's hard to help you with just broad, high-level information. Everyone here would love to help you, but it seems like our hands are tied right now because we have too little information.

talkwrite
10-23-2007, 01:11 AM
Nancy;
I'm a series acquisitions editor in non fiction and maybe I can help. But I went to your public profile to find your web site and it's not there. If you let me see your query I can give you my take on it.

triceretops
10-23-2007, 01:29 AM
Hey, what about our resident publishers and editor here at AW? We've got Priceless, Hapisoft and Behler. Correct? I hope I spelled those right. They could surely read a query/proposal and advise.

Tri

Lauri B
10-24-2007, 07:46 PM
Nancy, if you pm me I can take a look at it and give you some feedback.

nancyadams
10-24-2007, 08:55 PM
Hi Tripletsmom. I probably sent out 200 queries--not sure. Out of that, probably 100 rejections. I should count. lol. And yes, there are other successful books on this SUBJECT, but not the way I present the subject. And I would consider them best sellers of the "subject". And I'm fairly sure that it's part of the problem--agents think everything to be said has been said. They are dead wrong.

I apologize that this seems hard since I'm not sharing enough. I have a reason. I was just hoping someone would spit out enough general ideas that I could say "Yup, maybe that's it". One or two have, and I appreciate it.

Nancy


What's your website's Technorati rank and Alexa rank? 1,000 visitors a day doesn't mean much without the rank as that's one of the things an agent might check to determine the reach of your site more so than a number of visitors (and 1,000 per day might seem small to some agents).

I have to agree with everyone else that it's impossible to help you without knowing your book's subject and more about your platform. If your website is the only part of your platform, then that would be my guess as to your problem, but again, it's impossible to guess without more information.

How many query letters did you send out in total? You had six bites, but how many in total rejected you based on the query letter? That's important to know to determine where the problem might come from.

Also, are there a lot of other books on the market similar to yours? Are they big sellers? Can you give us the title of a similar book on the market?

Again, it's hard to help you with just broad, high-level information. Everyone here would love to help you, but it seems like our hands are tied right now because we have too little information.

nancyadams
10-24-2007, 08:57 PM
Nancy, if you pm me I can take a look at it and give you some feedback.

Thanks. I'll get to it asap. Nancy

Prevostprincess
10-25-2007, 06:26 AM
All I can offer with the information given is this: Do you have any relationship with the other author you mentioned whose book is somewhat similar? Can you ask her what her experience was like? Maybe she has some insight and would be willing to share.

JanDarby
10-25-2007, 06:53 PM
And yes, there are other successful books on this SUBJECT, but not the way I present the subject. And I would consider them best sellers of the "subject". And I'm fairly sure that it's part of the problem--agents think everything to be said has been said. They are dead wrong.

Have you looked at your book from the point of view of the random reader? If there are twelve (just picking a random number here) books on the hookstore shelf about your subject, and a reader walks into the bookstore, doesn't know you or, really, anything about the subject except that she wants to read about it, what is going to make the reader choose yours?

Presumably, they won't know who you are (no celebrity-name recognition to influence the decision, although you may have to overcome other celebrity-names in their decision), they won't know who has the "right" answer or the "better" way of presenting the material. They won't know who is more complete or more nuanced or whatever. They'll have the cover and maybe the back cover copy to go by. What is it about your book that can be shown to t he reader in just a few words that will make the reader think, "Aha! This is the right book on the subject for me"?

If you haven't already, that's the angle you need to present in your query letter: "Readers will choose my book over all the others, because ...."

Think of it, not from inside you, where you know it's the best book out there, but from the point of view of someone who doesn't know anything about the book, and only knows there are other books on the same subject. What makes yours stand out to potential readersa? Not "how will they benefit if they happen to choose it," but "why will they choose it."

JD

Mac H.
10-25-2007, 07:59 PM
You may find that publishers like the author of a book on medical subjects to have some kind of qualification ... even 'Dr' John Gray got a phony PhD which gave some borrowed credibility for his relationship books.

You mention elsewhere that your book offers 'excellent alternative methods to help [patients with the progressive disease] that doctors aren't mentioning'

One question in the minds of publishers and agents may to wonder WHY doctor's aren't mentioning these alternative methods.

If you could get a doctor or two on board you might possibly improve your chances.

Good luck,

Mac

Susan B
10-26-2007, 06:21 PM
Maybe you could try North Atlantic Books, a small (but solid) alternative publisher in Berkeley:

http://www.northatlanticbooks.com/

I heard about them from a local independent bookseller. (Not the press where I've ended up, but might be a good choice for an alternative health book--they seem to publish a lot in that area.)

Susan

talkwrite
10-26-2007, 06:26 PM
You may find that publishers like the author of a book on medical subjects to have some kind of qualification ... even 'Dr' John Gray got a phony PhD which gave some borrowed credibility for his relationship books.

You mention elsewhere that your book offers 'excellent alternative methods to help [patients with the progressive disease] that doctors aren't mentioning'

One question in the minds of publishers and agents may to wonder WHY doctor's aren't mentioning these alternative methods.

If you could get a doctor or two on board you might possibly improve your chances.


These are excellent points. I also receive proposals on topics that have no professional support. We tend to see these as POV's. If you are a recognized name, your POV might sell, otherwise we publishers can't take the risk.

JAG4584
10-27-2007, 01:47 AM
I think Nancy has some great advice here and from what I can gather the simplest and may be the easiest place to start is right at the beginning with the query letter. Often this will make or break a great project.

I sent out what turned out to be a good query as the responses from agents were positive and I had an abundance of requests for my proposal. This is the sign that the query worked. If you have no interest keep trying as patience and persistence it does in deed work.

My thoughts would be to regroup and to gain professional expertise to help you review the query and to re-work your proposal as this is how non-fiction is sold.

I agree that it is difficult utilizing this forum as many agents do not like to be conversed about, many folks fear that somebody may steal their ideas or obtain private information about them and frankly this day and age a person can never be to sure of anything. Better to be safe than sorry.

There is a ton of great information here and I know that you will find you way here Nancy.

Joycecwilliams
11-04-2007, 07:12 PM
Hi Nancy

Besides your website, what is your platform?
You may want to try to get published in some magazines first or some newspapers.
I think most publishers and agents are looking for something more concrete than a web page.

Best of luck

Lavinia
11-06-2007, 07:05 AM
Nancy-It looks to me like the advice you've received here has gone as far as it can without knowing more. Six rejections is honestly not a lot. If you believe in it, keep sending it out. Agents and publishers are subjective; one day they may not be able to see just how your manuscript could possibly sell and then the next, because of any number of circumstances, they could see it perfectly. Just keep at it.

One thing you might try is to go to a writer's association conference. There is one here in the Pacific Northwest that would be great but they are all over. I've been told that entering the writing contests associated with them are a good way to get your manuscript read and critiqued. Also, if you choose one in which you can meet with agents, you can do so and they often ask you to send a portion of the manuscript. With these personal requests, if they still reject the manuscript, they usually give you some kind of input. So maybe that would help.

Beyond that, without really knowing more specifics, I'd say that you would need to find some trusted but impartial people to review what you're doing. But remember, your book may be perfectly fine-you may just need to find the right person at the right time to find representation.

Karen

tombookpub
11-08-2007, 06:08 AM
NancyAdams says: "Or, it there something going on in the agents' worlds or publishing business that I don't get??"

Comments: Consider the tens of thousands of books publsihed every year. Consider that all agents are extremely overworked. Consider that an agent only wants to invest time in proposals that are near the top of the "cream of the crop." Consider that an agent can feasibly "go to bat" for you for a select number of publishers whose ranks are reduced by the recent mergers.
All these reasons are well hidden behind such pat QL replies as "not a good match for us" or "we are not accepting new clients now."

Sophia2
12-02-2007, 03:30 AM
I'll tell you: I'd love to share the answers to your questions IF I could do it non-publically..i.e. not right here on a public site. I was once sarcastically criticized by a gal for feeling the need not to be public, and since I can't change how I feel about the need to be private, all that disrespect did was drive me away from writers sites for awhile.

So....if I could find some writers or even a agent or two with experience, who know what it means to be confidential, who will be as tactful as possible to someone with a tender heart, and a place to do it privately, I'm game and interested.

I'm an expert in my field; I have a premier website; I'm not a professional writer but good enough; I'm not a caustic person; and I have competition in this non-fiction field. And...I have a book waiting in the wings that I KNOW has many willing buyers...if only I could figure out WHAT IS GOING ON!

Nancy

1. They like experienced and published writers. Have you had any articles published?

2. Have you had any academic papers published?

3. Many authors have self-published a few books before publishers/agents get interested.

4. Publishers like well known names and people who tour to promote their work.

5. Writing style, subject matter, size of market, title, can all make a difference.

I was at an exhibition talking to a director of a publishing company and all I had to do was mention the title and she replied 'please let me have first choice'.

The whole package is very important. However, the right agent for the right title is also imperative.

Sophia

Sophia2
12-02-2007, 03:34 AM
NancyAdams says: "Or, it there something going on in the agents' worlds or publishing business that I don't get??"

Comments: Consider the tens of thousands of books publsihed every year. Consider that all agents are extremely overworked. Consider that an agent only wants to invest time in proposals that are near the top of the "cream of the crop." Consider that an agent can feasibly "go to bat" for you for a select number of publishers whose ranks are reduced by the recent mergers.
All these reasons are well hidden behind such pat QL replies as "not a good match for us" or "we are not accepting new clients now."

Also the news on the ground is that a lot of distributors are dropping small publishers both in the US and UK. There is certainly a downturn due to the economic climate. Sadly, the publishing industry is suffering due to mergers, technology and lack of pro-active marketing. As anyone looked at publishing figures and statistics recently?

Sophia

Sophia2
12-02-2007, 03:40 AM
Nancy, if I remember correctly, James Redfield had 165 rejections. So he self-published. Then when he sold 250,000, a publisher was banging on his door.

If your website and product is that good, why don't you self publish through a company like authorhouse who can get you into the distributors?

Sophia

escritora
12-23-2007, 11:16 AM
Excellent proposals can be turned down for the following two reasons:

1) Voice. The publisher/agent may love the idea but not the voice of the writer. Perhaps they believe the book should be written with a quick and dirty approach, and your specific style of writing doesn't match the tone they want. Or perhaps your voice is whimsical and they are looking for a more practical approach.

2) Sometimes a strong web presence isn't enough. For specific topics, one may need a national audience (TV appearances, syndicated columns, known leader within the field).

Nancy I believe I may know your expertise (based on a quick internet search), I have a non fiction book published in that genre. If you'd like, you can PM me and we can take it from there.

Sophia2
07-26-2008, 04:42 PM
Its also important to remember that the publishing industry is shifting fast and publishers are doing their best to keep up with it. Like all industries some follow like sheep and others like to innovate and be leaders in the field. Publishers are also impressed if you have had the confidence to self-publish and have had success. When an author is prepared to put their own money on the line, the publisher has more confidence in the product.

Over confidence can also be a set back, you might be a specialist in your subject area but they are the experts where publishing is concerned.

Uniqueness, authenticity and innovation is KING.

Sophia

Sophia2
07-26-2008, 04:46 PM
Projects that don't sell can be put on a back burner, move onto a new project and continue to build up your own catalogue.

Sophia

Bluestone
07-26-2008, 08:15 PM
Nancy, it's been quite a few months since this thread started, but as it was just revived today and I read through it with interest, I thought I'd ask:

Have you made any progress? I'd love to know if you've had better luck after all this advice and the PMs going on behind the scenes.

smoothseas
07-26-2008, 08:30 PM
Is your website not a 'public place?'