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Plant Success Seeds for Your Next Conference Now

fruits-863072_640 (1)

Pixabay.com Choose a few seeds to plant for success for your next conference now.

“Plant Success Seeds for Your Next Conference Now” by Joan Y. Edwards

You have the magical seeds needed for your success. Your inner mojo or magical power is there for you to use 24 hours a day.  Look for it. Plant it. Nourish it. To help you grow in confidence, you need to grow in skills and abilities. Plant these seeds for your success at your next conference.

pixabay.com/Choose a few seeds to plant before the conference.


Before the Conference

  1. Believe in you. Activate this belief. BELIEVE IN YOU AND YOUR ABILITIES. That’s the first seed for success. Believe in you. You can do all things necessary for your success.
  2. Set your goals. What skill do you most want to improve? Attend the workshops that will help you improve that skill. I hope that by attending a conference, you’ll learn a new skill or marketing technique that inspires you to reach your goals. You have what it takes for success. You may have to look through different eyes, through a different window to see it.
  3. Visit the web pages of three presenters that interest you. If they have a website, read the about me section. Check out their books at your local library or on Amazon or Barnes and Noble.
  4. If you have specific questions for presenters, write them down on 3×5 cards and ask them at the conference during the workshops. If you don’t get a chance to ask them in person, most handouts or websites give contact information so you can write and ask them later.
  5. Get business cards with your name, address, phone number, email address, website, and blog. Many people put an image and link to their publishedbooks on the back. Use www.VistaPrint.comwww.Gotprint.com, or local print shop. You can also create business cards on your computer.
  6. Writers: Prepare a postcard, business card, bookmark. Use your book titles and pitch blurbs. Get these giveaways printed at www.VistaPrint.com, www.Gotprint.com, or other print shop. You can also create them by hand or with your computer.Illustrators: Prepare a portfolio of 10-20 of your illustrations. Make sure these are the kind of illustrations that you enjoy creating. Prepare a postcard with a sample illustration on it. If you have illustrated a published book, put it on one side and put a different story’s illustration on the back of the postcard. Share with people you meet at the conference. Also send one of your postcards to the art directors for publishing companies represented at the conference.r illustrators. Get bookmarks and or postcards printed at VistaPrintGot Print, or other print shop. You can also create them by hand or on your computer.
  7. Buy a new spiral notebook with a bright colorful design, a composition book with a black and white cover, or a sketch book.This way all of your notes are in one place. You can put it in front of your computer when you get home, and transfer your handwritten notes to your computer. You can add information from handouts by scanning them into your computer, or by typing what you want to remember from the handouts.
  8. Writers: Buy two pens that are dependable and write just the way you like a pen to write. Put them in your pocketbook to take with you. Illustrators: Take a pencil, a ruler, and a white eraser.
  9. Write a pitch for three of your manuscripts. Print out your pitches on 3×5 cards, 4×6 inch cards, or plain 8.5 x 11 printing paper. Carry two copies of each pitch with you to the conference. Put one copy in a folder and the other in your pocketbook. Practice giving your pitch in front of a mirror. Use eye contact. Memorize it. If your pitch is longer than on 3×5 index card, it is too long.
  10. Take comfortable clothing to wear in your favorite colors to keep your spirits high. Take a sweater or blazer, in case the air conditioning is too cool for your inner thermostat.If you’re hot, you can take off the blazer. A good work attire for writers/illustrators is a pair of jeans, a shirt, and a blazer. Linda Rohrbough says that you want the editors to think you just left your computer to meet with them. Be comfortable. If you feel better being all dressed up, dress up. It’s important for you to be comfortable and feel distinguished. Wear comfortable shoes.
  11. Check your laptop, iPad, or iPhone. Charge its battery. Bring your charger to the conference.
  12. Copy the  full manuscripts of your Works in Progress and other pertinent information you may need for the conference to a portable drive or flash drive for your laptop or use a cloud data holder. If you use Dropbox, you can put your manuscripts in it and access it from your iPad or iPhone or other electronic devices. It allows you to see your manuscript from all devices. Check it out before you leave home to make sure it works.
  13. Check out the directions to the conference. Find the restaurants that are located close to the conference that serve the kind of food you can eat.

pixabay.com At the Conference: Nourish the Seeds at the Conference

At the Conference

1.Take notes.

Take notes using your new spiral notebook or composition book or take notes on your laptop or other device.

2.Hand out business cards.

Hand out business cards to everyone with whom you talk. Ask for their businesscards, too. This will give you resources to check after the conference. The more you do this, the more comfortable and natural it will be for you. Make a goal of handing out at least 10-30 cards and getting an equal number in exchange.

3.Talk to people sitting beside you in a workshop.

Do you feel lonely and out of touch with people? Talk to the people who sit beside you in the workshops. Exchange names, email addresses, and business cards with them. Here are possible questions to start your conversation:

“What are you writing?”

“Are you in writing group? Is it online or face-to-face?”

“How do you find time to write (illustrate)?”

“Do you (draw) write best in the morning or at night?”

4.  If you meet a publisher or agent, ask them questions about themselves and their projects.

If you happen to meet an agent or editor in the elevator or at lunch, remember he/she is human, like you. Ask one of these questions or one of your own:

“What is your favorite project right now?”
“How do you know when a book is right for you?”
“What’s your advice for writers(illustrators)?”

5. Writers: Be ready to answer questions about your writing with a pitch.

After your question for an editor or agent, there is a great possibility he/she will ask you, “What kind of writing do you do?” This is a perfect lead in for your pitch. Hold your head high. Look the editor/agent in the eye. Pretend he’s your best friend and tell him your pitch.

Illustrators: Be ready to answer questions about your illustrating. Tell people three things you like to draw and if your like to portray humor, the dark side, nature, etc.

6. Take a short walk for exercise in between sessions.

7. Get plenty of sleep.

8. Eat healthy fruits, vegetables, and proteins. Drink plenty of water. This will keep you alert and focused.

9. Enjoy yourself and learn as much as you can.

10. List twenty things for which you are thankful each morning before you get out of bed.

11. Thank the presenters and the organizers.

12. If you are inspired by a book you hear about or see in the bookstore at the conference, buy it or borrow it from your public library.


After the Conference


1. Sleep, if you’re tired.

Accept yourself and others as you are. Focus on what you want. Be thankful for what you have. Be grateful for where you are. Put the fun back into your writing.

2. After you’ve rested, read and organize your notes from each workshop.

Edit your notes and add information from your handouts. You can scan pertinent information from the handouts into your computer.  Write at least three major things you learned from each workshop. You can write down more details if you want.

3. Make a top ten list of things that you learned at the overall conference.


4. Write/Revise Your Writing/Illustrating Goals

After this information soaks into your mind, body, and spirit, write/revise three writing/illustrating goals using the skills and information you learned. (Be patient with yourself.)

5. Writing Skill/Genre Goals

a) Read ten books in your chosen genre and three books on the craft of writing and/or illustrating.

b) Revise your favorite manuscript and submit it to an editor or agent.

c)  Revise 3 of your favorite illustrations. Choose one to create a new postcard and send to a prospective publishing company.

6. Marketing Goals

a) Learn a new technology.

b) Submit manuscripts/sample illustrations to different agents and/or editors often.

c) Join or create a critique group.

c) Join my Pub Subbers Yahoo Group, a group to encourage you to submit your manuscript/portfolio often (monthly if possible). To join, write me and tell me why you would like to join at joanyedwards1@gmail.com. Members postsuccesses, ask other members for help. etc. Members receive automated reminders for the weekly steps to get your work ready for submission.

Pub Subbers
Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Week 4

d) Prepare a book presentation for schools/organization.

e) Prepare a proposal to present a workshop for a writing conference.

f) Prepare a pitch for a manuscript. Go from a page summary and then focus on the words to hook readers. Keep shortening your pitch: 200-100-50-25 words. The ultimate goal is a pitch that is 140 characters long (approximately 25 words) that fits in Twitter. If you have all these different lengths, you will have a pitch to use in your cover letter, proposal, and for the rave blurbs for the back cover of yourbook. Your pitch is the magnetic tool that will entice people to buy your book.

7. Networking Goals

a) Create a website and/or blog.

b) Join a critique group.that focuses on genres you write or illustrate.

c) Give book presentations/workshops for schools and organizations

d) Create an author/illustrator page on Facebook and post news of your publishing journey.

e) Create a Twitter Account.Tweet your blog posts and your publishing news.

f) Visit the websites of three people who shared a business card with you.  Email them. Here are possible points to include in your email. Remind them of how you enjoyed talking with them. Thank them for sharing a resource. Congratulate them on their manuscript, portfolio, or book. Compliment them for being brave if they read their story at open mike. Thank them for giving you a new way to look at a problem.

g) Make a list of your followers on Facebook and Twitter. When you get your book published, they will be helpful in spreading the word about your book.  Interact with at least 25 of them on a regular basis.


  1. Amy Bishop. http://www.projecteve. “Do I Still Need Business Cards for Networking?” http://www.projecteve.com/do-i-still-need-business-cards-for-networking/
  2. Deborah Shane. “What to Do Before Attending a Conference?” https://smallbiztrends.com/2014/04/what-to-do-before-attending-a-conference.html
  3. Kristen Lamb, “Getting the Most Out of Writing Conferences:” http://warriorwriters.wordpress.com/2010/04/07/getting-the-most-out-of-writing-conferences/.
  4. Margo L. Dill, “Writers Conferences: Five Reasons Why You Should Go NOW, and How to Get the Most for Your Money:” http://www.wow-womenonwriting.com/13-FE-MargoDill.html/.
  5. Marita Littauer, “Four Keys for Writers ConferenceSuccess:” http://www.right-writing.com/conference-keys.html/.
  6. Travelle. “How to Prepare for a Conference:”http://www.huffingtonpost.com/travelle/how-to-prepare-for-a-conf_b_8413424.html
  7. Yvonne Russell, “Getting the Most out of a Writers’ Conference:” http://www.growyourwritingbusiness.com/?p=47/.

Thank you for reading my blog. Each time you read one of my articles, you honor me.  I hope your success is better than you ever imagined.

Click on comment and scroll down to the bottom of the page.



Never Give Up

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2012-2017 Joan Y. Edwards


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Why Not? Day 8 Make a List of Good Publishers. Go Ahead.

Why Not image Copyright © 2017 Joan Y. Edwards

Why Not image Copyright © 2017 Joan Y. Edwards

This is the 8th post in the Why Not Series.

“Why Not? Day 8 Write a List of Good Publishers. Go Ahead” by Joan Y. Edwards

  1. You’ve written sentences.
  2. You’ve written paragraphs.
  3. You’ve written an article, poem, short story, manuscript, screenplay.
  4. You’ve written a title.
  5. You’ve written a pitch.
  6. You’ve revised your writing at least three times.
  7. You’ve had your work critiqued by a critique group, a writing partner, and/or a professional editor. You’ve decided which suggestions you’ll honor and revised your manuscript again. You’ve proofread it and had others to proofread it, too.

Now you’re ready to decide where to send your manuscript…a publisher, agent, or contest? A TOUGH decision. If you’ve decided to self-publish your book, make a list of publishers who specialize in helping people self-publish and their fees. This post is not about self-publishing.

Do your homework. Investigate the publisher, agent, or contest. What are their best sellers? Do they publish your genre? What will be your royalty? Are there any required fees?  Do they accept returns? This is a necessity for your book to be accepted widely in book stores. Otherwise, you’ll have to approach bookstores yourself and see if they will sell your books on consignment. If there are fees, they are not traditional publishers. Stay away from them. Go to others.

Decide your criteria. What do you expect from a publisher? For most of The Big Momma Publishers, you must have an agent. If that’s your wish, obtain an agent.

Check the publishers or agents of three of your favorite books in your genre. Read their submission guidelines. Do they accept unsolicited manuscripts?

Study and find more editors, agents, or contests that are good matches for your manuscript. 

After collecting your information, choose three of the most promising ones for submission. Re-read the submission guidelines for each one. Write three reasons why each publisher or agent on your list would be a great choice. Save this information for your query or cover letter. It will come in handy.

If you’re reading information from a guidebook or an online source, DOUBLE-CHECK the latest submission guidelines on the website of the publisher, agent, or contest. Save yourself heartache. Check them again right before you submit your manuscript.

The next in this blog series will be about writing your query or cover letter to go with your manuscript.




  1. Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2017: Who They Are! What They Want! How to Win Them Over! by Jeff Herman: https://www.amazon.com/Hermans-Publishers-Editors-Literary-Agents-ebook/dp/B01LA268C0/
  2. Joan Y. Edwards. “22 Literary Agents Who Are Looking for You:” https://joanyedwards.wordpress.com/2013/09/06/22-literary-agents-who-are-looking-for-you/
  3. Joan Y. Edwards. “40 Publishers Who Accept Unsolicited Manuscripts:” https://joanyedwards.wordpress.com/2013/04/07/40-publishers-who-accept-unsolicited-manuscripts/
  4. Joan Y. Edwards. “Questions to Ask Before You Sign with a Publisher:”
  5. Joan Y. Edwards. “Take These Steps Before You Sign with an Agent:”
  6. Poets & Writers-Creative Writing Contests & Competitions http://www.pw.org/content/writing_contests_0?cmnt_all=1
  7. Sally Stuart. Sally Stuart’s Christian Writers’ Market Guide http://stuartmarket.blogspot.com/
  8. Writer’s Digest Books. Children’s Writer’s And Illustrator’s Market 2017, Writer’s Digest Bookshttps://www.amazon.com/Childrens-Writers-Illustrators-Market-2017/dp/1440347778/
  9. Writer’s Digest Books. Writer’s Market by Writer’s Digest Books 2017
  10. Writing Contests: http://writersviews.com/writing-contests.php


Earlier blog posts in the Why Not? series:

  1. “Why Not? Day 1 Write. Go ahead:” http://wp.me/pFnvK-3t0
  2. “Why Not? Day 2 Write a Sentence. Go ahead:” http://wp.me/pFnvK-3u1
  3. “Why Not? Day 3 Write a Paragraph. Go Ahead:”
  4. “Why Not? Day 4 Write a Snappy Title. Go Ahead:” http://wp.me/pFnvK-3wG
  5. “Why Not? Day 5 Write a Pitch. Go Ahead:”
  6. “Why Not? Day 6 Revise Your Story. Go Ahead:” http://wp.me/pFnvK-3xl
  7. “Why Not? Day 7 Get Your Writing Critiqued. Go Ahead:” http://wp.me/pFnvK-3xj

Thanks for reading my blog. I’d love to hear from you. To comment, click below and scroll down to the bottom of the page.


Never Give Up
Live with Enthusiasm
Celebrate Each Step You Take

Joan Y. Edwards
Copyright © 2017 Joan Y. Edwards


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Submit Again, The Right Publisher Awaits

Image Copyright © 2014 Joan Y. Edwards

Image Copyright © 2014 Joan Y. Edwards

“Submit Again, The Right Publisher Awaits” by Joan Y. Edwards

#2 in Series – Famous Writers Recovered from Rejection, So Can You

Would you return an advance and a contract if the publisher wanted you to change the ending of your story?

If 27 publishers rejected your story, would you throw it into the trash in despair?

If publishers said your story is too disturbing, would you write a different story and intentionally make it even more disturbing?

Who do you think did each of these things? Would you do it?

Read the following stories of ten famous writers who recovered from rejection, to find out who did these things. Follow my suggestions for action afterwards. Go ahead. Guess what my suggestions are. You can check at the end and see if you’re right.

Charlaine Harris published several mystery books. When she tried to get her vampire story, Sookie Stackhouse published, Alexandra Alter stated in the Wall Street Journal, SpeakEasyher blog article that 12 editors turned it down. There were 13 books in the Sookie Stackhouse series that sold more than 32 million copies globally. HBO made a “True Blood”series with Sookie that ran for six years and had 80 episodes.

Charles Shaw’s Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison is a novel about an American marine shipwrecked in the South Pacific. In Book of Lists, David Wallechinsky and Amy Wallace state that virrually very Australian publisher and 20 British firms rejected Shaw’s humorous novel over a three-year period.

In 1952, Crown Publishing Group in New York took a chance on it. By 1957 producers made Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison into a movie with Deborah Kerr and Robert Mitchum. It is a war classic and received several Academy Award nominations, including one for Best Writing.

Chinua Achebe sent “Things Fall Apart” to several publishing houses; some rejected it immediately and claimed that fiction from African writers had no market potential. Even, Heineman educational publishing executives hesitated until Donald MacRae, an educational advisor persuaded them to publish it with these words: “This is the best novel I have read since the war.”

In 1958, Heineman published 2,000 hardcover copies, It has sold over eight million copies worldwide and translated into over 50 languages. It is a milestone in modern African literature written in English, and is one of the first to receive global acclaim. Time Magazine selected it for its list of “100 Best English-Language Novels from 1923 to 2005.”

Chuck Palaniuk first tried to publish his novel Invisible Monsters. Publishers rejected it because it was “too disturbing.” Palaniuk showed them by concentrating on his seven-page short story “Pursuit of Happiness” about a Fight Club and intentionally made it even more disturbing. When Palaniuk expanded it to novel length, changed the name to Fight Club, W.W. Norton published it in 1996. They made a movie from it starring Brad Pitt in 1999.

After Fight Club had sold many copies, Palaniuk was able to publish Invisible Monsters in 1999.

C. S. Lewis. Aaron Earls said on Wardrobe Door.com that publishers only rejected Narnia one or two times, not 800 times as internet poses.

Daniel Keyes wrote Flowers for Algernon. Twelve publishers rejected it. What is interesting about Daniel Keyes and his book is that several publishers sent him a contract and advance money and demanded that he change the ending. Keyes rejected their offers and returned their money advances. Harcourt Brace published it in 1966. They made a movie from it called “Charly” (1968).

Darcy Chan’s story goes from the slush pile to a huge success in self-publishing to being published by a traditional publisher. Her experience is almost unique. In 2011, her self-published novel “The Mill River Recluse” appeared on the bestseller’s list.  And, still, she never found a publisher. Chan sent her novel out to over a hundred literary agents, and twelve publishers, and they all rejected it. She decided to publish it and sold more than 400,000 copies.

In 2014 Chan chose to let a traditional publisher, Ballantine Books, to republish The Mill River Recluse and to publish its sequel: The Mill River Redemption. In an interview with David Njoku on Indie Authorland.com, Chan states that she signed a contract with a traditional publisher to help with editing, research, legal issues, and because they could reach more people than she could with her self-publishing.

D. H. Lawrence (David Herbert Lawrence). André Bernard said in Rotten Rejections that publishers told D. H. Lawrence “For your own good, do not publish Lady Chatterley’s Lover.” According to Biography.com, in 1928 Lawrence’s graphic and highly sexual novel was published in Italy, but it was banned in the United States until 1959, and banned in England until 1960.

Dick Wemmer’s obituary in the New York Times says that publishers rejected his book, Irish Wine 162 times during a period of twenty-five years. Mercury House published it in 1989.

Dr. Seuss. Publishers rejected And to Think I Saw it on Mulberry Street twenty-seven times because it was too different from the other juveniles on the market to warrant its publishing it. It has grossed more than $75 Million.[17] #25 (Rotten Rejections by André Bernard)

Michale Winerip’s New York Times interview with Guy McLain who is the director of the Museum of Springfield History says “The publication of Mulberry Street is a lesson in perseverance.” Twenty-Seven publishers rejected it. Dr. Seuss was about to burn it in 1937 when a classmate from Dartmouth, who was new to the children’s book publishing business, bought it.

Please leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you.

Here’s a three-week plan to get your manuscript, query, cover letter, and/or proposal in gear. Week 4 gets you to celebrate and write another story.


Pub Subbers Join today.

Week 1 Send manuscript off for final critique before submission. Choose publisher or agent. Print Guidelines.

Week 2 Write pitch, query, cover letter, proposal, etc. to make a good impression.

Week 3 Proof read everything. Submit this week.

Week 4 Celebrate life. Write another story.

27 Publishers Who Accept Unsolicited Manuscripts updated August 17, 2014 Now has 27 publishers)

18 Literary Agents Who Are Looking for You

Good luck in your publication. Believe in you and your writing.

Celebrate you.
Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards

Copyright © 2014 Joan Y. Edwards

References in the order in which I used them.

  1. Charlaine Harris.com, http://charlaineharris.com/.
  2. Alexandra Alter. “Charlaine Harris the Vampire Series Slayer,” May 7, 2013, 8:45 a.m. EST, http://blogs.wsj.com/speakeasy/2013/05/07/charlaine-harris-vampire-series-slayer/
  3.  “True Blood,” accessed September 1, 2014, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/True_Blood.
  4. The Editors of Publications International, Ltd. “14 Best-Selling Books Repeatedly Rejected by Publishers,” How Stuff Works.com, Info Space, LLC., http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/arts/literature/14-best-selling-books-repeatedly-rejected-by-publishers.htm/printable.
  5. David Wallechinsky and Amy Wallace, ed. Book of Lists: The Original Compendium of Curious Inforamtion, Canongate, p422
  6. One Hundred Rejections.com, “Famous Rejection #76: Chinua Achebes,” June 2012, http://www.onehundredrejections.com/2012/06/famous-rejection-76-chinua-achebes.html
  7. Time Magazine’s Top 100 All-Time Novels,” Book Guide at Lincoln Libraries.org, http://www.lincolnlibraries.org/depts/bookguide/lists/times100alltime.htm
  8. Famous Rejection #47: Fight Club,” May 2011, http://www.onehundredrejections.com/2011/05/rejection-47-fight-club.html
  9. Aaron Earls. “Was C.S. Lewis Rejected 800 Times before Being Published?”The Wardrobe Door.com, January 13, 2014, http://thewardrobedoor.com/2014/01/was-c-s-lewis-rejected-800-times-before-being-published.html
  10. “Famous Rejection #33: Flowers For Algernon,” March 29, 2011, One Hundred Rejections.com, http://www.onehundredrejections.com/2011/03/rejection-33-flowers-for-algernon.html
  11. “Flowers for Algernon,” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flowers_for_Algernon
  12. Steve Holland. “Daniel Keyes’ Obituary,” The Guardian, June 18, 2014, http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/jun/18/daniel-keyes
  13. “Famous Rejection #64: Darcy Chan,” One Hundred Rejections.com, http://www.onehundredrejections.com/2011/12/famous-rejection-64-darcy-chan.html
  14. David Njoku, April 6, 2013, “Interview with Darcie Chan, Author of the Mill River Recluse,” http://www.indieauthorland.com/archives/2916/Kindle-eBook/interview-with-darcie-chan-author-of-the-mill-river-recluse/
  15. “D. H. Lawrence,” Biography.com, http://www.biography.com/people/dh-lawrence-17175776
  16. Dennis Hevesi, “Dick Wimmer, Whose Persistence Got Him Published, Dies at 74,” May 24, 2011, http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/25/arts/dick-wimmer-74-irish-wine-author-is-dead.html?_r=0
  17. Seussville.com, http://www.seussville.com/
  18. André Bernard. Rotten Rejections: The Letters That Publishers Wish They’d Never Sent. New York: Pushcart Press, 1990.
  19. Michale Winerip. “Mulberry Street May Fade, but ‘Mulberry Street’ Shines On,” http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/30/education/dr-seuss-book-mulberry-street-turns-75.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
  20. #1 Famous Writers Recovered from Rejection, So Can You.


Flip Flap Floodle, a happy little duck whose song saves him from mean ole Mr. Fox’s belly.
Joan’s Elder Care Guide, Release Early 2015 by 4RV Publishing
Website-Gospel-related devotionals, puzzles, and skits for children
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20 Reasons to Submit Your Manuscript

“20 Reasons to Submit Your Manuscript” by Joan Y. Edwards

Pub Sub


When should you submit your manuscript?

  1. When the manuscript is the best you can do at this particular moment in time.
  2. When you believe with unwavering faith that there is a market for your manuscript.
  3. When your manuscript is correct in formatting, spelling, grammar, and punctuation.
  4. When your manuscript content meets the genre guidelines of the selected publisher or agent.

If you don’t believe your manuscript will be published, change your thinking and/or change your manuscript.

Before you hit the send button for electronic submissions, see a picture of the cover of your book, and say: “This company buys this manuscript. Thank you, God for helping me get this book published.”

Before you put the envelope with the stamps in the mailbox or hand it to the counter person at the Post Office, see a picture of the cover of you book and say: “This company buys my manuscript.” Say the Our Father or other prayer as you leave the Post Office.

Question: How many times should you submit your manuscript?

Answer: As many times as it takes to receive a contract for publication.

20 Reasons to Submit Your Manuscript

  1. It’s healthy.
  2. It’ll make you smile.
  3. Your book will get published sooner.
  4. People need the information you are writing now.
  5. People are waiting to read what you write.
  6. It takes you one step closer to publication.
  7. It is a big milestone in your life as a writer.
  8. It will take you to a higher level of thinking.
  9. It frees you to write a new manuscript.
  10. It opens up unlimited possibilities.
  11. It shows your unwavering faith in you and your story.
  12. It solidifies the image of your published book in your mind.
  13. It will excite the child within you for weeks.
  14. It gives you a great reason to celebrate you.
  15. It will create visions of money in your head.
  16. It will give you a reason to be proud of yourself.
  17. It will enable you to take the next step in your writing career.
  18. It gives you a sense of well-being.
  19. It builds confidence in you and your capabilities as a writer.
  20. It will make God proud of you.

What Are Step-by-Step Directions for Submission?

Here are links to pages with step-by-step directions for submissions that lead to publication:

Pub Sub Directions

  1. Week One
  2. Week Two
  3. Week Three Submit your manuscript before the end of this month. Pub Subbing aims for the Third Friday, but earlier or later is fine.
  4. Week Four

Thank you for reading my blog. Please share your thoughts with me. Would you like information on a topic about writing, submission, or what to do to keep on going? Let me know.

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Celebrate you.
Never Give Up
Joan Y. Edwards

Copyright © 2013 Joan Y. Edwards

What Are You Thinking? To Succeed, Reword Your Thoughts (PubSub3rdFri)

What Are You Thinking? To Succeed, Reword Your Thoughts (PubSub3rdFri) by Joan Y. Edwards

Dear Pub Subbers,

Many times we think we set our goals properly. We want to get our book published. We write a manuscript. We send it off to critique groups. We write a cover letter and send it off to a publisher. Negative thoughts bring negative results. Positive thoughts bring positive results.

What are you thinking? Are you thinking of reasons why you can’t get published? Excuses, Hurdles to Jump, Obstacles. Your underground thoughts might go like this:

  1. Money is tight. No one is publishing paperback books now.
  2. No one, but no one is publishing picture books now.
  3. If books cost more $16.99 or more, no one is going to buy it.
  4. No one understands my humor.
  5. You have to be a well-known artist to illustrate children’s books.
  6. Only famous people get books published easily.
  7. Publishers and agents don’t reply.
  8. All I get from publishers and agents is no.
  9. I don’t have time to write.
  10. I’m not going to change my manuscript for anybody.

You can see from looking at these that the author/illustrator would have a difficult time not because of what someonelse is thinking about his work. It’s the author/illustrator’s thoughts that are rejecting the work before it even leaves his house. Change your thoughts to be more receptive to a yes. Send out good vibrations.

  1. Money may be tight for many publishers. However, there is a publisher who will publish my book in paperback.
  2. Some publishers are not publishing picture books. Some publishers are publishing picture books. There is a publisher that gives me a contract to publish my picture book.
  3. Publishers found a cheaper way to market my books.
  4. Editors, Agents, and readers understand my humor.
  5. I am a talented artist. I illustrate children’s books.
  6. My books are published. It was easy.
  7. Publishers and agents reply to my queries.
  8. Publishers and agents offer me numerous contracts. I receive mostly yes responses from publishers and agents.
  9. I have time to write.
  10. I change the things I agree 100% about changing in my manuscript for my editor. I listen to the logic behind the editor’s reasons for wanting to change my manuscript.

After you’ve gotten your focus on what you want and your thoughts in a positive mode, send out your manuscript.

More PubSub3rdFri blog posts: https://joanyedwards.wordpress.com/category/writing/pub-sub-3rd-fri/,

Week One,

Week Two,

Week Three Pub Sub Friday

Week Four – Read, educate, and motivate yourself. (Blog to come soon)

Submit your work. You are worth it. Good luck with all your publication endeavors.

*During July, I’ll send you a copy of Joan’s Plot Diagram if you add a comment to the Winner of Joan’s Plot Diagram post http://wp.me/pFnvK-y4  and tell me that you’d like to receive it.

*Sign up for an email subscription from the left hand column. If
you’re the 50th subscriber, you will win a choice of a free paperback
copy of Flip Flap Floodle or a 1001 Ways to Market Your Books by John
Kremer. Forty-one people have signed up, so far.

Never Give Up
Celebrate Where You Are
Joan Y. Edwards


Copyright © 2004-2011 Joan Y. Edwards

My Interview of Jeff Herman

Interview of Jeff Herman, Author of Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2011.

About Jeff Herman’s Agency: http://www.jeffherman.com/about-the-agency/jeff-herman/

Welcome, Jeff Herman.  Thank you for participating in an interview for my blog. I am honored because I am impressed with your book and by the active steps you take every day to help writers achieve their publication dreams.

Welcome, Readers. Thank you for visiting my blog and reading my interview with Jeff Herman.

Below you will find my ten questions I asked and Jeff’s answers to them. I hope by reading them you will become further convinced that his book, “Jeff Herman’s Guide to Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents” contains useful information that could get you published. I hope that you will be encouraged so much that you will never give up. I hope that we inspire you to take the next step toward your goal.

  1. Who and/or what circumstances helped fill you with the most confidence? How do you keep positive-minded? For me, confidence can be a zig-zagging process, though my bottom-line confidence level seems to progressively improve with experience and maturity. I have learned that the lack of confidence is the most common reason for not trying to do something, but that confidence without knowledge and leverage can be useless. I try to avoid reasons why something won’t happen while focusing on strategies to make it happen. Success builds confidence, but that can also be a trap because new situations may require new methods, and it takes discipline to avoid complacency.
  2. What are three of your favorite books? Why? Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn, because they helped make me a reader. Bonfire of the Vanities, because I still think about it 20 years after reading it.
  3. What inspired you to write the “Jeff Herman’s Guide to Publishers, Editors, & Literary Agents?” I needed to collect the information anyway for my own purposes, so I figured why not package it for sale. When I started out as a young agent it struck me how many aspiring writers were clueless about how to get published, and I personally resented that so many editors wanted to be invisible and inaccessible. I believed, and still do, that opening the gates is what’s best for everyone. Publishing is like a public utility and no one should be prevented from being given a fair shot.
  4. This is the 21st edition of your book. It explains the differences and changes in the mega-publishers, independent publishers, and university presses. The symbols you use for the different genres are very helpful: Romance-heart, Children-school bus, Religious-Cross, etc. In your next edition, are you planning to add symbols to agents pages? Is there any chance you might add a symbol for publishers who accept email submissions or accept unsolicited manuscripts? I like the symbols and think they should be expanded, but I must confess that they were entirely my publisher’s idea.
  5. Why do most mega-publishers and many independent publishers only accept work through an agent? How does an agent help a publisher? What is an agent’s job with a writer? In fairness, editors need to shield themselves from being overwhelmed by unsolicited submissions; there just isn’t enough time or staff to review the vast majority of them. The agent is crucial because she is the screener, and is unlikely to present anything to publishers that’s mis-directed or unworthy. When projects arrive from credible agents, editors figure it’s not a waste of time to take a look. It follows that a writer’s most effective route to getting access to a bona fide editor is to be represented by a bona fide agent.
  6. Your book lists the history of hundreds of literary agents, what they are looking for, and how to contact them. As an agent, you represent clients who write adult non-fiction. What steps can writers take to become your client today? How do you know when a writer is the perfect client for you? How many possible publishers do you have to see flashing across your mind before you sign a new client?  Good questions can be hard to answer. I know it when I see it, and sometimes I don’t know it when I see it. Agents and editors are right and wrong all the time, which is why writers must never throw in the towel. I simply need to intuitively feel that I can sell the project somewhere. Without that feeling, I’m not the right agent, but it still may be a darn good project.
  7. What’s your advice for writers who want to become published? know that no one owes you anything, but that it’s ok to ask for everything, though you shouldn’t expect to get everything. Giving up is failure. Rejection is eventually followed by success a lot of the time. Love the writing and tolerate the publishing.
  8. What mistakes do writers make in their query letters and/or proposals? What can they do to correct them? Poor expression. Boring. Unclear concepts and thoughts. Self-defacing. Resentful and negative. Too many words. Overly derivative and unoriginal. Just avoid these characteristics and you will be above-average.
  9. Self-Publishing has a better reputation than it did six years ago. What are the advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing today? Self-publishers don’t get distribution; have to pay for everything themselves, and lack brand credibility that comes with having a bona fide publisher. However, they manifest the product and could potentially sell a lot of copies for a lot of money in a lot of ways that don’t require bookstore support.
  10. The iPad, the Kindle, Sony and similar electronic readers have opened an exciting new way of viewing books, magazines, and newspapers. Children’s picture book applications for iPad and iPhones are animated and fun for both adults and children. Digital magazines are becoming interactive with statistics that updates as you read it on the internet. This is indeed a fascinating medium for distributing and viewing written material. What advantages and disadvantages with electronic publishing do you see emerging for publishers and writers? How would a good contract stipulate electronic rights? Compare the cost/selling price/profit for hardbacks, paperbacks, eBooks, and eBook applications for iPads and iPhones. Digital formatting will dominate market share in the near future, and will further enable self-publishing. The jury is still out for how this will financially affect typical writers, though my hunch is that it will be positive by generating more revenues in general. Borders will soon be a memory. Barnes & Noble will be forced to reengineer what it does by selling a lot of non-book products, while the independents will manage to find sustainable niches same as they do now. Amazon knew 10 years ago that they will have to sell almost everything and be a commissioned broker for third-parties, and their model is working out. Corporate owned publishers missed the boat by failing to invent their own ereaders. They will continue to be exploited and disrespected by their owners, meaning even less diverse and more bland vanilla front lists. Boutique houses will make a come-back and will profitably publish great books.

Thanks again, Jeff for taking the time to answer my questions to keep writers informed and help me and other writers get published.  Do something good for yourself today.

My humble thanks to Beth Pehlke, Jeff Herman’s publicist for inviting me to interview him and review his book on my blog and for donating three free copies of his book for the contests below. I am very honored that she chose me.

Thank you for reading my blog.

To enter a contest to win a free copy of a book, follow the directions below:

1. Sign up for an email subscription from the “Sign me up” block from the top of the left hand column. The 50th person to subscribe by email from the left will receive a free paperback copy of Flip Flap Floodle or a 1001 Ways to Market Your Books by John Kremer.

2. I will enter all email subscribers at midnight (EST) on January 18, 2011 into a random drawing to win a free copy of Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2011. Sign up for an email subscription from the “Sign me up” block from the top of the left hand column.

3. I will enter everyone who leaves a comment on this post by midnight (EST) Tuesday, January 18, 2011 into a random drawing to win a free copy of Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2011.

4. I will enter each person who leaves a comment on my Review of Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2011 blog post by midnight (EST) Tuesday, January 18, 2011 into a random drawing to win a free copy of Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2011.

5. Read Roxie’s Blog interview with me http://wp.me/pBU4R-BG, then leave a comment on my blog post https://joanyedwards.wordpress.com/2011/01/05/roxie-put-me-in-the-spotlight-on-her-blog/ by noon (EST) on Monday, February 14, 2011, you’ll be entered into a random drawing to win a free copy of Flip Flap Floodle.

I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to share a link to my blog with others. Use email, Facebook, Twitter, or other means to share.

Never Give Up

Joan Y. Edwards




Copyright 2011 Joan Y. Edwards. All rights reserved.

Review of Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents

Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2011: Who They Are! What They Want! How to Win Them Over! by Jeff Herman



Jeff Herman’s Guide is the best jam-packed book of good information for writers I have ever read. It is more than two inches thick and has 1,094 pages. The font size is large enough that I don’t need a magnifying glass to read it. It gives a broad picture of how authors, agents, and publishers work together. It gives vital information about publishers, agents, and book doctors (editors) to help writers achieve the goal of getting their manuscripts published. It has the keys to publication success. It’s sold more than 350,000 copies. I keep it close to my computer and take it with me on vacation. I think if I use the resources inside, I will get my work published. If you can get a copy from the library or purchase a copy, I believe it holds the keys to your publication success, too.

The book has the following ingredients:

1.      Big Publisher Multi-National Conglomerates

2.      Independent United States Publishers

3.      Canadian Book Publishers

4.      University Presses

The first four sections of this book are about publishers. It gives you book publishers and the names of their editors when the book went to press. He gives you the big conglomerates, independent book publishers, and Canadian publishers, and university presses. It has picture symbols to denote different genres: religious (cross), romance (heart), children’s books (school bus), and others for adult, poetry, fantasy, etc. By browsing for a certain icon, you can quickly find publishers who are interested in your genre.

Each category lists the snail mail address, phone number, and website. It tells the history of the company. It lists the titles published. It tells you what genres each publisher is looking for and which the publisher does not accept. It gives submission guidelines. It tells whether a publisher accepts only agented material or if they will accept unsolicited manuscripts. Even though Jeff took great care to print the latest publisher guideline information in his book, it is very important to check the website for up-to-date submission guidelines before you submit a manuscript.

Follow a publisher or agent’s latest guidelines. If you don’t read and follow their guidelines, publishers, editors, and agents deem that you are not ready for publication. To get an advantage in being chosen, follow the submission guidelines.

5.      Literary Agents – It explains the job of a literary agent. It tells you his hobbies and personal interests, too. It lists the snail mail address, phone number, and website. It tells the history of the agency. It tells if he is a member of the Association of Author Representatives. It’s a good idea for your agent to belong to this association. It lists authors the agent represents, along with the published book titles. It tells subjects and categories that interest him and those he definitely, absolutely, positively does not want.

6.      Advice for Writers – Essays about unsolicited manuscripts, query letters, proposals, author-agency contracts, self-publishing, and future of publishing. It contains samples of good query letters and proposals.

7.      Independent Editors (Book Doctors) – Information about editors that Jeff Herman trusts. You can choose one according to their experience, reputation, and the authors for whom they edited manuscripts. Sometimes these editors recommend you to an agent or a publisher.

8.      Resources for Writers – Lists book titles, websites, and blogs that help writers improve their craft in adult and children’s fiction and non-fiction.

9.      Glossary – Contains definitions of important writing terms.

10.  Index – Has page numbers for publishers, editors, literary agents, and subjects mentioned in the book.

My Suggestions for using Jeff’s Guide:

1.      Borrow the book from the library or a friend or purchase it.

2.      Purchase a notebook (spiral or bound) or make a computer file with your favorite word processing software, like Microsoft Word or Microsoft Works.

3.      After you read each section, make a list of ten publishers, agents, and book doctor editors who are a good match for you and your book(s). Write the name of your manuscript you plan to send them. Put page number in Jeff’s book, so you can go back to it.

4.      Highlight three to send query letters or cover letters with manuscript.

5.      Write down the submission guidelines. Put a link to the website. If they accept email submissions, include the email address. Write the name of editor who receives the submission queries. Follow a publisher or agent’s latest guidelines. If you don’t read and follow their guidelines, publishers, editors, and agents may decide that you are not ready for publication. To make sure they choose you, follow their submission guidelines. UsePubSub3rdFri posts to help get your submission(s) ready.

6.      Send off three submissions. Get a certificate from PubSub3rdFri to celebrate your submissions. Reward yourself.

Thanks for reading my blog. I hope reading my blog inspires you to Never Give Up on yourself or your writing.

To enter a contest to win a free copy of a book, follow the directions below:

Sign up for an email subscription from the “Sign me up” block from the top of the left hand column. The 50th person to subscribe by email from the left will receive a free paperback copy of Flip Flap Floodle or a 1001 Ways to Market Your Books by John Kremer.

I will enter all email subscribers at midnight (EST) on January 18, 2011 into a random drawing to win a free copy of Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2011. Sign up for an email subscription from the “Sign me up” block from the top of the left hand column.

I will enter everyone who leaves a comment on this post by midnight (EST) Tuesday, January 18, 2011 into a random drawing to win a free copy of Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2011.

I will enter each person who leaves a comment on My Interview with Jeff Hermanblog post by midnight (EST) Tuesday, January 18, 2011 into a random drawing to win a free copy of Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents 2011.

Read Roxie’s Blog interview with me http://wp.me/pBU4R-BG, then leave a comment on my blog post https://joanyedwards.wordpress.com/2011/01/05/roxie-put-me-in-the-spotlight-on-her-blog/ by noon (EST) on Monday, February 14, 2011, you’ll be entered into a random drawing to win a free copy of Flip Flap Floodle.

My sincere thanks to Jeff Herman and his publicist, Beth Pehlke, for donating three free copies of his book for these contests and allowing me to review his book and interview him on my blog. I am very honored that she chose me.

I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to share a link to my blog with others. Use email, Facebook, Twitter, or other means to share.

Never Give Up

Joan Y. Edwards




Copyright 2011 Joan Y. Edwards. All rights reserved.

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