78 Reasons Why Your Book May Never Be Published and 14 Reasons Why It Just Might

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Penguin, Jun 7, 2005 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 224 pages
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For the hundreds of thousands who buy writers’ guides every year, at last there’s one that tells the ugly truth: writers who can’t get published are usually making a lot of mistakes. This honest, often funny,  book shows them how to identify their own missteps, stop listening to bad advice, and get to work. Drawing on his experience as founding editor of MacAdam/Cage, Pat Walsh gives writers what they need—specific, straightforward feedback to help them overcome bad habits and bad luck. He avoids the optimistic, sometimes misleading directions often found in publishing how-to books and presents the industry as it is, warts and all. Here is the first guide that tells writers just what the odds against them are and gives them practical tips for evening them.
 

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Contents

You Do Not Revise Your Book or You Will Not Revise It Again
1
You Think Too Highly of Yourself
3
You Think You Are a Natural
5
You Think Writing Is Easy
6
You Listen to False Praise
7
You Do Not Know What You Are Talking About
8
You Do Not Care About Language
9
You Cannot Tell a Story
10
The Slush Pile Like the Publishing Industry Does Not Make Sense
49
Enthusiasm Does Not Come from the Slush
50
You Missed Your FirstChance Glance
51
You Got Cute and Made a Fool of Yourself
52
You Made Stupid Mistakes
53
You Got Lazy or Impatient
54
PART SIX AGENTS PROVOCATEURS
54
You Accidentally Went into the JunkMail Business
55

You Preach
11
You Do Not Realize That Nobody Cares
12
You Are a Copycat
13
You Do Not Have Style
14
You Have Too Much Style
15
You Do Not Kill Your Little Darlings
16
You Use Bad Metaphors and Similes
17
You Sacrifice Clarity for Art
18
You Do Not Know Grammar
19
You Do Not Care About Syntax
20
You Do Not Know Enough Vocabulary
21
You Read Your Writing Aloud Too Much
22
You Have a Tin Ear for Dialogue
23
You Do Not Know Your Audience
24
You Do Not Trust Your Audience
25
PART THREE THE PUBLISHING GAME
25
You Do Not Understand How Publishing Works
26
You Do Not Understand the Bestseller
27
You Do Not Understand the Selling of Books
28
You Do Not Understand That Publishing Is Not a Game of Words
29
You Do Not Understand the Game of Managed Risk
30
You Do Not Understand the Soft Science of the Profitand Loss Statement
31
You Do Not Understand Comparable Titles
32
You Do Not Understand the Agent Connection
33
You Do Not Understand Advances
34
You Do Not Understand the Auction
35
You Do Not Understand the Authors Role in Publishing
36
You Do Not Understand Publicity Promotion and Marketing
37
PART FOUR THE OTHER PUBLISHING GAME
37
You Fell for SelfPublishing Hype
38
You Think SelfPublishing Will Get You Taken More Seriously
39
You Signed with a PaytoPlay Agent
40
You Go to Writers Conferences for the Wrong Reasons
41
You Found the Wrong Book Doctor or Editing Service
42
You Listened to Some Bad Advice
43
PART FIVE SLUSH DIVING
43
You Will Rot in the Slush Pile as the Publishing Houses Lowest Priority
44
You Are Kidding Yourself If You Think You Are Not in the Slush Pile
45
There Is Too Much Slush
46
You Are in Bad Company
47
You Are an Uninvited Guest at the Publishing Party
48
You Do Not Know What You Are Looking
56
You Did Not Research Agents
57
You Did Not Go to Published Authors
58
You Submitted Your Work Too Early
59
Your Query Is Queer
60
You Cannot Stop Talking About Yourself
61
You Cannot Describe Your Own Work
62
You Lied
63
You Do Not Understand the AgentAuthor Relationship
64
You Sullied Your Name
65
You Scare Away Agents
66
The Dark Side of Agents
67
The Agent Rejection
68
PART SEVEN ACQUIRING MINDS
68
You Dont Know What Editors
69
You Do Not Know What Most Writers Do Not Know
70
PART EIGHT BAD MOJO
70
You Have Bad Luck and Bad Timing
71
You Accept Bad Luck and Bad Timing
72
You Are Caught in a Topical Storm
73
You Blame the Publishing Industry for Your Lack of Success
74
You Do Not Take Advantage of Opportunity
75
You Are Sticking to Your Guns
76
You Do Not Go On to the Next Book
77
You Do Not Take Positive Action
78
PART NINE THE GOOD NEWS
79
You Wrote a Good Book
80
You Are Honest with Yourself
82
You Do Your Homework
83
You Make Yourself Stand
84
You Have High Hopes and Reasonable Expectations
85
You Have a Healthy Perspective
86
You Take Advantage of Time
87
You Are Patient but Persistent
89
You Are Flexible
91
You Learn from Rejection
92
You Take Calculated Risks
94
You Take Yourself Seriously
96
You Make Your Own Luck Chapter 14 You Have
97
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About the author (2005)

PAT WALSH was until recently senior editor of the independent publisher MacAdam/Cage and was previously a reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle. He is the author of 78 Reasons Why Your Book May Never Be Published and 14 Reasons Why It Just Might (Penguin).

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