Previously I discussed the guidelines for submitting nonfiction manuscripts. Now we are going to discuss the process for reviewing fiction submissions.
Everything discussed in submittion nonfiction applies here as well. But it’s a little bit more delicate. The fiction market is oversaturated. Everyday hundreds of books in various genres are being published, the bookstores are reluctant to stock any works of fiction which are not written by renowned authors and big publishers, and the readers too, are very meticulous in choosing the next book they want to read, and are less prone to risking their money on new authors, unless they have heard or read about them. So, the path for new novelists to get some exposure in the market is very challenging. Naturally, publishers too, are quite careful about the books they decide to publish.
However, we do look for new authors. Actually, we are quite up for the challenge of finding and introducing new talent, especially if it has anything to do with the Middle East. We are happy to risk our investment on rising starts. But they need to be really good.
First of all, when you submit your books, give us a full proposal. If your proposal is incomplete, we won’t read them, as you should be caring about your book as much as you expect us to care. Please give us a ‘full’ synopsis. This is the first thing we read, to decide whether we like the story or not. So the more information you give us in the synopsis, the higher the chance for the editor to move on to reading the book itself. In the synopsis, you should explain the main plot, and then start telling us how the story begins, what happens, what is the main focus, who the characters are, what the challenges are, and how the story ends.
If we like the plot, then we will move on to reading the first chapter. Here, you only have a couple of pages to impress the editor. If I don’t get it in the first two pages, I’m sure I won’t get it at all, and for it to be publishable, you need to hook the reader in the first two pages, in the first page, in the first paragraph; because that’s where your readers will look at, to decide whether they want to read the rest of the story.
Send us also your promotional blurbs for the book: You should try to pitch your story to the editor, and if you can’t sell your book to the one person that can open the gate, he or she won’t be to sell it to thousands of readers.
So, this is it for now, more to come later.