1. Eddyz Aquila
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    Eddyz Aquila Member

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    Small or big publishing house?

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by Eddyz Aquila, Aug 31, 2009.

    I was wondering which is the best way to go in regards to your publishers. Say you have an agent and request that he only accepts offers from big publishers, what's better in regards to the attention being given to your work? Some might say that smaller ones give you better attention, but bigger houses have more people and more experienced, no?

    By attention I mean people devoting their time to work with you on coming up with the final edition of your manuscript that ends up the shelves.

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. marina
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    marina Contributing Member Contributor

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    I have no idea, but with the slim odds of getting published in the first place, I wouldn't put any limitations on an agent regarding what kind of publishing house from which I would accept offers.
     
  3. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    And in the case of the few publishers you can go to directly, you're better off looking at the content of the books they publish, not how big they are.
     
  4. Eddyz Aquila
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    Eddyz Aquila Member

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    Obviously you look at the content of the books they publish, but you don't want them to simply "bail out" on you, not making any effort to polish and then publish the book accordingly, so this is why I was asking what might be better.
     
  5. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    In general, I believe it is better to go for the bigger houses first and work your way down in size to the smaller houses.

    Off the top of my head:

    The larger houses have better distrubution and will get your work into more places it can easily be purchased. Having it available through Baker and Taylor, etc, means it can be ordered, which is good, but it's not the same thing.

    Larger houses can get more prominant reviewers to review your work.

    You will have a full-time editor that will work with you. (Many smaller publishers have editors who work on the side, or when they can fit it in after their day job).

    A larger publisher for print editions will probably do offset printing--a print run of your novel in the thousands. It will likely be better priced than what a smaller house that probably uses POD technology.

    Success at a larger house will open more doors to more future opportunities.

    Larger publishers tend to pay better.

    With a smaller publisher, you may get more individualized attention, but most agents are not going to focus on submitting to smaller houses first as the compensation for them just isn't there. Most agents get 15% of what the author earns. Many small houses don't offer much of an advance, if any advance against royalties at all, which is even a greater disincentive for an agent.

    It is easier to get blurbs from major players in the industry (ie authors) if an author is being published by a large/major house.

    With a smaller publisher, the author will have a longer time in print. Often with larger houses, the author basically has about 6-8 weeks to make a big splash, as many bookstores rotate books that haven't sold out, and returns often begin several months later, but even a big house doesn't expect to make a profit on an author's first novel.

    There is nothing wrong with going with a small publisher as long as the author recognizes what a small publisher can and can't do for an author's work.

    Terry
     
  6. arron89
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    arron89 Banned

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    It sounds like an awful idea. Big publishers get to be big because they make a lot of money publishing very marketable books. If they're not convinced that your novel is capable of becoming a best-seller, or at least selling very well, winning awards, etc, then you might have a hard time convincing them to take you. No publisher is going to put out a book without having edited and polished it first, its not in their best interests. The only thing you should consider is what the publisher publishes and whether you are a good fit with them.
     

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