Kootenai River in NW Montana, near Canadian Border

Kootenai River in NW Montana, near Canadian Border
photo by Gene Tunick of Eureka, Montana

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Tip O'Day 351 - Catch 22

Guest blogger Stephanie Osborn on “Things They Don’t Tell You In Author’s School - Part #4.” (When I invited fellow writers and book lovers to submit guest posts, Stephanie was the first to climb aboard – with not one but eight Tip O’Day suggestions. I thought it might be interesting to revisit those early posts from the third week in January, 2011.)

Getting your foot in the door can end up with a smashed foot.

Thing Four: The old adage, "You can’t get published without an agent, and you can’t get an agent without being published," isn’t true – but it isn’t far from it. Many of the big publishers won’t even look at anything that isn’t handed to them by an agent. With some of them, it’s impossible for the budding author to even find contact information.

Contrariwise, most agents won’t look at anyone who isn’t published. (There are a few. But your story had better be good, and polished to the nth degree.) However there are some good publishing houses out there that DO accept unagented submissions. The trick to these is that, unless you know somebody, your submission goes into a "slush pile" and will remain there for some time. Slush pile submissions are read in the order received, so your baby will be there for however long it takes for the company’s readers to dig down to it. Be prepared to be patient.

Dixon’s comment: Consider getting your first publication credit from a small, regional press. Also, many authors e-publish and hope that sales on Amazon and other sites may entice a major publisher to pick up their book.


  1. I am in fact pleased to read this webpage posts which
    carries tons of useful data, thanks for providing these information.
    Also see my page: de Sibert of California

  2. Excellent post. I used to be checking continuously this weblog and
    I'm impressed! Very helpful info particularly the closing phase :) I deal with such info a lot. I was seeking this certain info for a very long time. Thank you and good luck.
    Also see my webpage :: economic development