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  Click here to go to the first staff post in this thread.   Thread: Publishing

  1. #1


    I have no idea how this process is supposed to go down. I'm under the impression that most writers start off earning their chops by submitting smaller stories to magazines and such, then slowly work their way up from there, but I'm not familiar with those publications really. Self-publishing is always a thing, but I've heard bad things about that and of course it's my dream to have a book on the shelf of a bookstore rather than just a downloadable epub. So does anyone know how this ball gets rolling?
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  2.   This is the last staff post in this thread.   #2
    Retired Staff Frank LeRenard's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Land of the Finns
    I'm no expert, but it does seem to me as well that most writers start by submitting to smaller publications first, and then move up as they grow in skill and can handle the more competitive markets. With those, you just check their webpages to see if they're currently accepting submissions, follow their guidelines, submit, and cross your fingers. The first several may not pay anything, or will pay token amounts ($10-$50 per story).

    Publication of longer works, though, seems to take two routes these days:
    1.) The traditional route, as in getting an agent and submitting to the bigwigs in publishing, or
    2.) Self-publication and promotion in the hopes that popularity and sales would catch the attention of someone involved with the bigwigs of publishing.

    Both routes benefit greatly from getting to know agents and publishers, of course. Presumably this is why a lot of writers still insist on living in NYC.

    But again, I'm not experienced in this, so maybe wait for someone who's been through the whole rigamarole to answer.

  3. #3
    I wouldn't be opposed to self-publishing if I knew I wasn't hamstringing my attempts at a genuine publishing later.
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  4. #4
    Premium User Oly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    NB/male leaning
    If you don't want to try self publishing searching for an agent is probably the smartest thing you can do.

    If you can't find one, you're either not good enough that they see a marketable talent, or what you're writing is probably too niche or something - in which case fuck it, self publish, if it's anywhere near decent and you promo yourself effectively you'll be able to establish a fan base and potentially be able to snag an agent or deal based on that.

    Disclaimer: I'm a musician by trade, not a writer. My advice is meant to be generic enough to apply to any arts but obviously my ideas are tinted by music business.

  5. #5
    A little experience here from the comics and illustration side. Also a member of SFCanada, so I get to hear a lot from published authors.

    First off, there doesn't seem to be a magic formula for getting published, outside of keep writing, and keep submitting.

    Self publishing seems to work best with authors who've already made a name for themselves. Also, when you publish yourself, you have to take care of things like finding an editor, proofreader, cover artist, etc yourself, and if you want decent ones, it will cost you. A publisher can at least give you some idea if you're ready for prime time.

    As far as where to publish, hit Google and start looking up publishers. The ones who are taking submissions will have a submissions section on their website outlining what they want. Any book or magazine will also have a listing for the publisher's website. The Writer's Market directory has been around for a while, and they have an electronic version

    If there are book fairs in your area, check them out. Science fiction/fantasy/horror cons usually have a few small press publishers in the dealer's room. Talk to writers, and pick their brains. Join a writer's group.

    Hopefully, this will point you in the right direction.

  6. #6
    Agreeing with rbartrop above, but don't pay for Writer's Market. I use The Submission Grinder, which is a free searchable database of publishers. (For anyone who's familiar with Duotrope, this was created as a free alternative to Duotrope when they went pay.)

    For a general guide to how the short fiction submission process works, there's a good article here:

    It's written from the perspective of publishing in furry anthologies, but the process is basically the same elsewhere. Whether you're looking to be published inside the fandom or outside of it, I'd definitely advise writing and submitting some shorter works before you try to get a novel published, just so you have some experience with working with editors and such.

    (More resources generally: -- with the full disclosure that I'm the current president.)
    Last edited by Poetigress; 07-28-2015 at 01:07 PM.
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  7. #7
    What I write is primarily fanfiction, however, all my fanfiction stories are written under the expectation that I'll eventually remove all intellectual property and all reasonable similarities to established work and push them as their own stand alone titles. Hell, one of my stories is missing about a third of its content because the character and story I want to use with it don't fit the derivative work's lore. When I rewrite it it'll be pretty indistinguishable.

    As for publishing within an anthology, that sounds like a neat idea. I wouldn't be opposed to it, but I wouldn't really classify myself as a "furry writer". I'm a writer, and only a small portion of my work involves furry themes at all. Unless you count teenage angst as furry content of course.
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