1. FrankieWuh
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    FrankieWuh Active Member

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    I want to get my novella out there - but where?

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by FrankieWuh, Apr 10, 2014.

    So here's the thing: last year I finished a novella (approx. 50k words) and I sent it to an agent. They gave me ideas on how I should edit it down, and now it's almost done. Unfortunately the agent doesn't do novellas because they are a difficult market to crack (and there's not much profit in it), but I want to get it out there anyway, whether its through a traditional publisher or self-published.
    Question is, who (or what method) should I choose? These days there are more choices than ever, maybe too many. (I feel like I'm going to a Chinese buffet but being told I can only have one dish. They all look so tasty but I know a few of them are going to be bad for me.)

    So ... Any advice on the means of getting this story published will be a huge help.
    Thanks!
     
  2. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    Kindle has become the new home for novellas. They suit the format very well. Self publish after a professional edit and commission a designer for the cover art.
     
  3. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Successful writers like Stephen King and Jim Harrison have done it by combining three or so novellas into one book. Check out King's Different Seasons or Harrison's The Woman Lit By Fireflies to see what I mean. (BTW, The Woman Lit By Fireflies is one the best titles I've ever seen!)

    So, write another novella or two, and try to sell them as a collection.
     
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  4. FrankieWuh
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    FrankieWuh Active Member

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    I've considered Amazon (on my list of possibles), and I have a cover in mind (I've decided to create my own cover first before I fork-out for a pro, anything to keep the costs down). But what about Amazon's own publishing arm? Are they any good? Does anyone here have any experience using them? Is there an equivalent elsewhere that I should consider?
     
  5. FrankieWuh
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    FrankieWuh Active Member

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    I've read King's Different Seasons, and Four Past Midnight - both are great collections (will look out for Harrison's Woman Lit by Fireflies too, thanks for the recommendation!).

    My only problem is that I'm not sure I have another novella in me and I'm too impatient to wait for one to just appear. I'm working on a novel right now, and the next two projects are also novels, so really I can't see another novella coming my way for the foreseeable future. Rather than shelve it, I would like to see it out there. I'm not terribly bothered about making lots of money (that would be nice, but not crucial), but having it published in some way (traditional or digital) this year would be good.

    I'll finish the current novel this year with a view to sending it to publishers next year. I'd like to go to them with something on my CV that says I've sold x (or hopefully xxxxx!) copies of my novella so far, just to show that I'm building some kind of readership.
     
  6. Keitsumah
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    Keitsumah The Dream-Walker Contributor

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    I am in a writing group and one of the members is Victorine Leiske. Look her up -she is self-published and now her first novella is going to be translated into german. She also will answer when you contact her. :D And if you want double assurance instead of being skimmed, tell her Sydney sent you.

    Currently helping her edit Accidentally married and she leaves me rolling on the floor laughing every time. She's an AMAZING cover artist as we'll and I wouldn't be surprised if she mentioned your novella on her blog to help publicize it if you let her review it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2014
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  7. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I guess it depends on what you mean by 'get(ting) your novella out there.'

    There are plenty of publishers that published novellas of the 50,000 word length, some even in print. They're mainly smaller in size. But not all publishers are created equal, and some do little more than you could by self-publishing, other than provide a lousy cover, poor editing and no marketing--but keep a percent of sales, if any. Others will do a decent job editing and providing good cover art and help market, and sales may be such that you'll earn a decent bit of income--and so will the publisher. You'd have to do a lot of research, and the better publishers tend to be very selective and your novella would have to be of the quality (and genre/content/storyline) they publish.

    Self-publishing is an option as well. But even if it's professionally edited and has quality cover art, if it is just placed 'out there' without focused and sustained efforts at marketing, it's almost guaranteed to become one of the hundreds of thousands of titles that languish in obscurity and garner only a handful of readers at best.

    Even with a focused marketing effort, there's a good chance that the novella may not do well in gaining readers. There's a lot of competition out there.
     
  8. FrankieWuh
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    FrankieWuh Active Member

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    Brilliant, and BIG THANKS - I might do that.

    When self-publishing I'll need every publicity tool at my disposal (I've even just made myself a twitter account, and a website is on the cards), but just as important are allies. Not just allies such as Victorine, but on this forum too. Encouragement and advice is priceless to aspiring writers, so thank you all :)
     
  9. FrankieWuh
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    FrankieWuh Active Member

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    Yeah, it's a good job I'm not aiming to be the next Hugh Howey or someone. I guess just having it published will be a good thing; a modest success (selling a couple of hundred copies) would also please me no end. Anything more than that would be a bonus in my view!
     
  10. Krishan
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    Krishan Active Member

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    If your goal is to sell copies of your novella, Amazon KDP might be a good way to go. If you don't mind giving it away for free, there's also Wattpad - this route might get you more readers, and help grow your online presence more quickly.
     
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  11. FrankieWuh
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    FrankieWuh Active Member

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    I think Amazon KDP is where I'll be heading with this one eventually. When finished it'll be 50,000 words there or thereabouts. I've been looking at getting in communally self-published, or going to a small press too.
     
  12. Gingerwoman
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    Gingerwoman New Member

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    Ironically Amazon's own publishing arm....(I assume you mean all their imprints like Montlake Romance) Is harder to get into than a LOT of other big publishers because it appears to be strictly agent only therefore you can't just choose to submit to Amazon imprints like Montlake Romance you have to be with an agent who submits to those imprints. Depending on what you wrote though a lot of publishers who have digital first or digital only imprints may be interested in a novella.
    I don't think many agents are interested in collections of novellas for print publication except maybe in a very popular genre. I think it would be a hard sell to most agents.

    I'm afraid I recently read an agent's blog where she said she is not interested in hearing from self published authors who've sold less than 10,000 copies and that she will not be accepting any more queries from self published authors with less than that number sold. Some agents don't want authors to have self published first, others are fine with it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2014
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  13. FrankieWuh
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    FrankieWuh Active Member

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    That's good to know. Was wondering about that. Heard a similar thing about self publishing, so I might consider a pseudonym.
     
  14. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    meaning what?
     
  15. FrankieWuh
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    FrankieWuh Active Member

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    It's self publishing but using others skills and experience to help get your book out there. Kinda like a writing group where the goal is to publish your book under the same publishing name as everyone else. In the group I've become involved in, there are traditionally published authors, semi-professional editors (editors who this isn't a day job, but are up to the task!), a cover designer and skilled IT bods who can talk me through getting it out as an ebook. They even have a website dedicated to promoting the books, and loads of experience, either of traditional publishing, or self publishing. One of the authors has sold in excess of 50,000 copies of his first book alone, so he isn't doing so badly. None of this help costs the author either. Skills are traded, so everyone benefits without it hitting the author's income.

    That's just one of the options. I also like the other options put forward here (and the ones PM'd to me).
     

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