For newbie writers, there’s nothing quite like that feeling when you’ve clicked the ‘submit’ button and received the confirmation of your submission. The nervous, tense days of waiting for an often elusive ‘yes’ can be hard, but there will always be that sense of achievement because you actually managed to submit a piece of writing to somebody.
We are thinking about submitting our writing this month, whether to another blog or to a publisher/agent. So far, we have discussed how we can ensure that we are ready to submit, especially if it’s our first time sending our writing to somebody. Today, we’ll be thinking about how we can decide who to submit our writing to.
First of all, I would advise new or little-known writers (myself included) to give their time and attention to popular websites, journals, anthologies, and the like. This will help you to establish yourself, and you will also be able to learn more about publishers and publishing by getting involved with smaller companies or shorter pieces of writing. Anthologies and journals are a great place for beginners to showcase their writing.
It’s important to know the publisher (or website) that you’re submitting to. Who are they? What do they do? Which genres do they focus on? Wherever possible, you should sample some of the things that they have already published so that you know the kind of writing they are looking for. Some publishers may post free samples and excerpts from their books on social media to encourage readership and promote their writers; others may be less prevalent online.
So, before you decide whether to submit to them, you should ask yourself how the publisher promotes their current submissions, books, authors, etc. Do they post daily online, or do they post infrequently? Do they interact with their readers? Do their current books have lots of reviews, and if so, do these reviews comment on the overall look of the books? Think about the publisher’s audience versus your desired audience, and whether they are similar or the same.
There are many factors that should affect your decision to submit to a website or publisher. Some people may tell you to submit your writing to here, there, and everywhere – but you should know who you’re submitting to and why before you send your writing off to them.
This month’s theme is SUBMISSIONS. If you have written something that you would like me to share on this blog on the theme of submissions and publishing, then please post a link in the comments or email me on firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject: Submissions.