Home > Getting Published > No One Said Getting Published Was Easy

No One Said Getting Published Was Easy

So you have a completed manuscript, hopefully critiqued for plot holes and grammar and overwriting. Agents, I’m told, don’t even look at fiction manuscripts by starting out writers unless it is in the range of 70,000-100,000 words. Kafka’s Metamorphosis is less than 70,000 words, you say. Lets face it, if you were Kafka, you wouldn’t be worrying about getting published.

Snarkiness aside, the word count rule is not absolute. Nothing is. But if you want to increase the odds of your of getting published, it pays to follow the rules. Over 100,000 words also makes it harder. I’m aware Pillars of the Earth is 11,000 pages long. Wasn’t Ken Follet’s first book, though. Get published first. Then break the rules.

A tip about agents: they hate it when you call your work of fiction a ‘fiction novel’ – that’s what novels are (or should be) – fiction. James Frey wrote a good piece of fiction, but called it a memoir, and got called on it. So how you label it (initially – for the agent, later – on for the world) does matter.

This is the first of many articles I hope to do as I try to find a toehold in the world of blogging. Let me know if you like this article or hate it or whatever.

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Categories: Getting Published
  1. January 13, 2011 at 8:14 am

    Good work, Rasana! I found it useful, and I’m sure many others will, too.

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