I feel like an idiot. I knew better but went ahead and did it anyway, with predictable results. The one saving grace is that I will be able to redeem myself. You see, about 9 months ago I submitted another novel to my publisher, Dundurn. Foolishly, I thought that having been published by them once, that I would get my work looked at faster than if it simply went into the slush pile.
Didn’t work out that way. Maybe it was quicker by a month or two, if that. Seems to me 9 months is about the time it took them to accept my first novel, A Dark and Promised Land. This isn’t the only experience of this kind of thing I’ve run into as a writer; although I’ve published dozens of articles with the magazine Pacific Yachting, there are times when I float an idea to them that they simply don’t respond, or it takes them weeks and even months. And I even have the email of the chief editor.
The sad fact is that publishers of all stripes are swamped with content, and any one author is just cattle, unless you happen to be one of the dozen or so national literary elites that everyone fawns over. Although they wouldn’t have product without those of us creating it, as individuals we are meaningless drones, any one of which is completely replaceable.
It’s not just the editor’s fault, however; with so many media competing for eyes, profit margins are razor thin, and every editor is harried beyond belief and has little time for handholding or giving preference. You would think it would make their job easier having a stash of competent writers in the Rolodex, but it doesn’t seem that way. Each time I approach an editor, I seem as unknown and anonymous as the last, and it doesn’t get any easier getting a work looked at and accepted. That’s sure not how I thought it would be.