Good things to think about when looking for help publishing. If it seems to good to be true, it probably is. Also, make sure the agent you are looking at works in the genre you are trying to pitch and that they are accepting clients. Find their website (agentquery.com is a helpful site when you have a name you want to look up) for the details plus how they want to be queried. Each agent is different. A good site to check on predators is pred-ed.com.
Brian Grove has a list of traditional publishers that are accepting submissions but my guess is these are small or mid-size companies. The “Big” companies (simon and shuster, harper-row…) don’t accept direct submissions, you have to have an agent to in with those folks.http://myperfectpitch.com/book-publishers-accepting-submissions-by-category/
My recommendation is self-publish then start looking for an agent or publisher. If your book is selling well, they will be happy to take a look at it.
I’ve self-published a few books (some more successful than others) and even though I may not have a best seller out there I’m pretty happy selling a few hundred books or so, building a following, and if it takes me years to build toward that best seller, then so be it.
If I don’t become a best seller, then I’m not really that put out either.
Once in a while I will receive an e-mail from a “publisher” or an “agent” saying that they would love to publish something that I write in the future, always mentioning their publishing house and always touting the awesomeness of my work.
Be careful here.
A naive novelist might get all giddy and nearly have a back spasm at a letter such as that, but let me be the first to warn you: they may be a vanity press masquerading as a publisher.
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