Blog

The Truth in Publishing
Thursday, August 11, 2022 by Cindy Sproles

Image by Gerd Altmann from PixabaySo, (I realize you should not start a sentence with so, but this is necessary. Oh. Not but either. However? Nope, not that one either.) Let me start again. :)

I’ve recently worked with some writers who are newbies. It’s so refreshing to work with those who are just beginning. Their enthusiasm rubs off and it, if I’m honest, it’s like a sweet balm to my heart. I love listening to their aspirations, dreams, and desires as a writer. They’re excited and everything they do exudes excitement.

They attend conferences filled with excitement and dreams and then...it hits. Reality. Part of our jobs as faculty at a conference is to offer encouragement, direction, and assistance to new writers. We want them to understand that within this business, (or at least the Christian end of it), there is room for everyone.

Faculty members spend hours in preparation, study, and doing critiques as we ready ourselves for the next conference. When we meet with a conferee who has a particularly unique piece of work, we may ask, “Send me that work. Let me take a closer look.” And all we hear are crickets.

I’ve often wondered why. I never missed sending something to an editor or publisher who requested it. But apparently, this is a real issue since at the last conference I attended, I ask for five people to send me their work and here I am, a month out, and NOT ONE PERSON sent me their work.

This is where the so, comes in:

SO, I want to breathe some truths into you about publishing. Take them in, think about them, and then take action where necessary.

  1. When an editor or publisher asks to see your work they mean it. A conference is the one place of grace where writers can meet face to face with publishers, acquisition editors, and editors. Meeting with these folks is like getting a gift card from Starbucks. This is your one opportunity to have an invitation into the door without an agent. Most publishers do not accept unsolicited (i.e. un-agented) manuscripts. So, when they ask you to send your work, it’s an honest invitation. If you were starving and someone offered you a double cheeseburger, would you turn it down? I hope not. Nor should you take lightly, an invitation to send your work to this door that has just been flung open for you. If your work is requested, send it as soon as possible.
  2. Rarely does a contract come to a brand new writer. Writing is a craft and it has to be learned and honed. There are few who walk into this business with a picture of perfection. Self-publishing divisions will encourage you with a contract and that’s well and good if you take advantage of the skills offered within their companies to help you turn out well-written work. For the most part, for a writer to receive a contract from a traditional publisher (and remember there are exceptions to every rule), it takes six-eight years to finally reach the level of writing required for publication.
  3. What are the odds of a publisher taking a time-sensitive book from a new author and publishing it? Well, folks might say they’d like that manuscript so they can get it out before xxxx day. SOO, here is the truth. Unless you’re a celebrity, most publishers are not going to snatch up your time-sensitive book. There, again, are exceptions, like a school shooting survivor, for example, with a unique story but for the most part, it rarely happens. What saddens me about this is yes, a story and writer may be really good, but unless you are served a contract at that moment, your work is still going to go through “the process.” That means the publication board, editors, marketing experts, and the publisher themselves. The process takes time. IF you submit to a publisher at their invitation, the odds are better, but if not, well...there’s the email coming into the editor. The work goes on the bottom of their knee-high acquisitions stack. It can take weeks or months for an editor to get through the stack and find your work. The process still has to happen.
  4. CAN I BE ANY MORE DISCOURAGING? LOL. I hope not. But for me, the subjects we talk about are smothered in loving encouragement. Conference after conference I speak with discouraged conferees who come into the business with a picture in their mind of how things work. I see many walk away disappointed and never write again. But, when you can see the real picture and have the information, you can set appropriate goals.
  5. Publication is wonderful but most need bloody knees.  It is wonderful to see your book finished and in print and it means even more when you’ve trod the road of rejection, climbed the ladders of learning the craft and swam the waves of possibilities. Educate yourself. Be realistic with your goals and before you know it, your time will come.
  6. Never underestimate God’s timing.  Please don’t rush the process. God has a plan and when we run ahead we run out of His will for the work. Learn what He is teaching you along the way and when the timing is right by His hand, you will be published SUCCESSFULLY!
Share This Blog:


Comments

Theresa Parker Pierce From Granite Quarry NC At 8/17/2022 1:36:00 PM

This was full of truth. I am in year three and the newness has not worn off. I’m learning and but by very ~ very slowing growing. I am at the turning point of discouragement but I plan to dig my heels in only because Cindy, Heather and Elaine (you know who you are) have spoken fresh life into the

Reply by: Cindy Sproles

Good for you. Just do it.

Elizabeth H. Van Lie From Montrose, Co 81403 At 8/17/2022 1:08:27 PM

I can only say it must have been God's will when I showed Eddie my possible devotional and he called you in on it. Bit by bit, it is still in the hands of readers as I continue to pray it brings people into God's presence.

Reply by: Cindy Sproles

It was and still is a great devotional.

michael richard From At 8/17/2022 12:37:37 PM

Wonderful article Cindy! Blessings Michael

Reply by: Cindy Sproles

Thank you. Glad it was helpful.

Mountain Breeze Writer


Previous Posts

Fog, Mist, Morning
Cindy Sproles
9/29/2022

From a Rooster to a Hen
Cindy Sproles
9/24/2022

Writing from the Hip
Cindy Sproles
9/19/2022

Soggy Scrubby and the Long Goodbye
Cindy Sproles
9/13/2022

Wramping Up for ACWC
Cindy Sproles
9/10/2022

Rest Not, Want MORE!
Cindy Sproles
9/3/2022

Reality for Me
Cindy Sproles
8/17/2022

The Truth in Publishing
Cindy Sproles
8/11/2022

Beyond
Cindy Sproles
8/4/2022

Working with an Editor
Cindy Sproles
7/7/2022

Two on the Way
Cindy Sproles
2/26/2022

The Party's Overrrrr!
Cindy Sproles
2/22/2022

2022 Encouragement for the Writer
Cindy Sproles
1/4/2022

Every Day is New
Cindy Sproles
1/1/2022

Beginning Anew (An Eldercare Note)
Cindy Sproles
12/31/2021

Five Ways to Kill Your Publishing Opportunity
Cindy Sproles
12/30/2021

A Dollar Wisely Spent
Cindy Sproles
12/28/2021

Silent Night
Cindy Sproles
12/25/2021

Back Pocket Projects
Cindy Sproles
12/21/2021

Things are Back on Track - I think!
Cindy Sproles
12/18/2021

Wonky is Hard
Cindy Sproles
4/25/2021

Present Yourself Approved and Professional
Cindy Sproles
1/28/2021

Integrity - An Authors Valued Trait
Cindy Sproles
1/8/2021

Homonyms – Did You Sea/See Them Their/There?
Cindy Sproles
1/8/2021

Writer Self-Care - Welcome 2021
Cindy Sproles
1/4/2021

Hope in a New Year
Cindy Sproles
1/1/2021

One More Christmas Thought - Taken from ChristianDevotions.US blog
Cindy Sproles
12/25/2020

A Christmas Saga - Joy in the Season
Cindy Sproles
12/24/2020

When Writing Grows Hard
Cindy Sproles
12/22/2020

Permission to Quit - No Way
Cindy Sproles
12/18/2020

The Power of the Pen
Cindy Sproles
12/15/2020

The Good, The Bad, and the Memoir
Cindy Sproles
12/11/2020

The Immeasurable Power in You
Cindy Sproles
12/8/2020

Scratch It Till It Bleeds
Cindy Sproles
12/5/2020

Closing Up Shop - Renting or Selling Our Parent's Home
Cindy Sproles
9/5/2020

Humility in Writing
Cindy Sproles
7/7/2020

Let it Percolate
Cindy Sproles
7/3/2020

Mentoring - A Wise Choice
Cindy Sproles
6/29/2020

Divorce My Words?
Cindy Sproles
6/23/2020

Icy Self-Talk Will Freeze Your Writing
Cindy Sproles
6/19/2020

The Power in You
Cindy Sproles
6/16/2020

Waiting
Cindy Sproles
6/12/2020

Who Really Sells Your Books
Cindy Sproles
6/9/2020

Social Media When You Aren't Social Media Minded
Cindy Sproles
4/20/2020

What Really Is Important
Cindy Sproles
4/12/2020

In the Midst of Chaos
Cindy Sproles
3/17/2020

The Heart of God
Cindy Sproles
2/14/2020

Writing in a Pickle
Cindy Sproles
1/30/2020

The Adult Day Care Alternative
Cindy Sproles
1/23/2020

Social Media Blitz
Cindy Sproles
1/19/2020

The Joys of Aging
Cindy Sproles
12/30/2019

The Reality of Who We Are?
Cindy Sproles
12/22/2019

Publishing Trends
Cindy Sproles
11/30/2019

Be Thankful ANYWAY
Cindy Sproles
11/28/2019

Writing Your Mission Statement
Cindy Sproles
11/19/2019

Perseverance to Write
Cindy
11/16/2019

Common Sense Tips for When You Write
Cindy Sproles
11/9/2019

The Battle is Fought
Cindy
10/15/2019

Twelve Tidbits of Wisdom from Top Christian Writers
Cindy Sproles
10/5/2019

Pray with Fire
Cindy Sproles
10/3/2019

The Easy In
Cindy Sproles
9/24/2019

The Art of Self-Editing
Cindy Sproles
9/10/2019

Questions, Questions
Cindy Sproles
9/6/2019

15-Minute Appointments - Important Networking
Cindy Sproles
9/3/2019

Don't Close Your Eyes - Bob Hostetler
Cindy Sproles
2/5/2019

Love Your Faculty
Cindy Sproles
10/17/2018

Forging Ahead after Rejection
Cindy Sproles
7/17/2018

cindysproles.com Privacy Policy
Cindy Sproles
6/4/2018

Closing Up Shop - Guiding Seniors to Letting Go
Cindy Sproles
4/9/2018

Publishing Naysayers
Cindy Sproles
3/16/2018

In Prayer - I Write
Cindy Sproles
3/3/2018

Keep Them Reading
Cindy Sproles
1/12/2018

Encouraged - Even When . . .
Cindy Sproles
1/2/2018

Christmas Tears
Cindy Sproles
12/18/2017

Holiday Elder Care - Be an Elder Elf
Cindy Sproles
11/12/2017

Grateful for a Dream I Didn't Know I Had
Cindy Sproles
11/9/2017

Keep Them Reading
Cindy Sproles
11/1/2017

Chicken Soup for the Soul - Writer Call Out
Cindy Sproles
10/27/2017

Five Ways to Assure Your Work will Find the Slush Pile
Cindy Sproles
10/24/2017

23rd Psalm Revisited
Cindy Sproles
10/21/2017

Contentment in Writing
Cindy Sproles
10/19/2017

5 Common Sense Tips to Better Writing
Cindy Sproles
10/10/2017

Overshadowed
Cindy Sproles
8/21/2017

Chicken Soup for the Soul Callout - Stories about Love
Cindy Sproles
8/21/2017

Five Keys to Overcoming Rejection
Cindy Sproles
8/12/2017

Writing Call Out - Chicken Soup for the Soul
Cindy Sproles
8/10/2017

When Words of Encouragement Wane
Cindy Sproles
6/28/2017

Writing Truth with Love
Cindy Sproles
1/13/2017

Oh To Be A Writer
Cindy Sproles
1/4/2017

Why Write?
Cindy Sproles
1/1/2017

Scammed
Cindy Sproles
6/21/2016

The Pain of Unsolicited
Cindy Sproles
3/9/2016

Not Alone: A Literary and Spiritual Companion for Those Confronted with Infertility and Miscarriage
Cindy Sproles
11/21/2015

Thankful Despite . . .
Cindy Sproles
11/20/2015

Stepping Up to Na-No-Wri-Mo
Cindy Sproles
11/16/2015

The Gift of No Gifts
Cindy Sproles
11/2/2015

Writers Be Encouraged
Cindy Sproles
10/15/2015

Keep ‘Em Reading – It’s the Writer’s Responsibility
Cindy Sproles
8/13/2015

Saying Goodbye
Cindy Sproles
7/17/2015

Overcoming the Fear of Writing Failure
Cindy Sproles
7/8/2015

Making the Move – Home to Assisted Living
Cindy Sproles
6/17/2015

I Kid You Not
Cindy Sproles
6/6/2015

Hearing the Call to Foster – Renee McCausey
Cindy Sproles
1/13/2015

Throw Out the Crutches
Cindy Sproles
1/10/2015

So You Were Asked to Be A Beta Reader?
Cindy Sproles
1/10/2015

REJECTIONS – Aaughhh!
Cindy Sproles
1/5/2015

The Bachelor – Stephanie Reed
Cindy Sproles
12/14/2014

The Making of a Servant
Cindy Sproles
11/30/2014

Miracle in a Dry Season Review – Yvonne Lehman
Cindy Sproles
8/27/2014

Write Anyway
Cindy Sproles
8/26/2014

World Blog Tour – Catching Up with Cindy Sproles
Cindy Sproles
7/22/2014

The Progression of Life
Cindy Sproles
7/17/2014

Instrumental Writing Helps – Aaron Gansky
Cindy Sproles
7/4/2014

The Question Saga
Cindy Sproles
6/29/2014

Defy the Night – REVIEW
Cindy Sproles
4/28/2014

When the Work is Hard to Do
Cindy Sproles
4/1/2014

My Heart Belongs to Him
Cindy Sproles
2/14/2014

Review of The Vicar’s Wife
Cindy Sproles
2/2/2014

The In on Self Publishing – Part 2
Cindy Sproles
12/29/2013

The In on Self Publishing – Part 1
Cindy Sproles
12/26/2013

In a Pickle
Cindy Sproles
10/1/2013

Bigger and Better
Cindy Sproles
9/27/2013

Putting SOCIAL back in Media
Cindy Sproles
8/10/2013

After the Conference Ends…
Cindy Sproles
8/8/2013

Here a Tweak, There a Tweak, Everywhere a Tweak, Tweak
Cindy Sproles
8/2/2013

Can You Hear Me Now?
Cindy Sproles
7/23/2013

Golden Years, Cherished Moments
Cindy Sproles
3/20/2013

Broken Heart Syndrome
Cindy Sproles
9/26/2012

What About Our Elders
Cindy Sproles
8/24/2012

A Minute – A Lifetime
Cindy Sproles
8/10/2012

Water, Water – Who’s Got the Water
Cindy Sproles
7/31/2012