Getting Published Question

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Question:

Hey, I have been writing for a few years now. I am only 15 years old but I feel I have a strong writing talent for someone my age. I am wondering if I should begin to try and be published yet. Here are my questions: What age do most writers start at?Are there any laws that would prevent me from getting published or paid due to my age (in Canada)?When I do send in a book to try and get it published is there anything that I could do to help it be picked?

Answer:

Tip-1:
I do not think there are any laws prohibiting you from publishing your books, but I strongly suggest against it....Develop your writing, you may think you're good now, but think how good you'll be in a couple of years. I used to think I was a fantastic writer at twelve, now I look back on those stories and cringe.
You don't want to make another Eragon do you? Well, maybe you do. I guess he made lots of money, but I'd rather be known for quality work...If you do pursue publication, then good luck!

Tip-2:
I can't give you any information about the publishing industry, but what I can say is if you have yet to do so, it would be a good idea to do at least 1 writing course first.I had finished writing my book when I was 19, and I was sure that it was publishable, but I then did a writing course by correspondence, and now I realize just how hackneyed my first attempt was, and now my writing is ten times better.I'm not saying that your work couldn't be good enough to be published, but you are at a great age to start honing your skills before trying to take up writing professionally.

Tip-3:
The only problem with sending out manuscripts is that you need to either have an agent, or have them appraised; otherwise a publisher won't touch them. And while I am not sure about whether or not an agent takes any money up front, I know that appraisal can be very expensive (especially for a 15 year old)

Tip-4:
Agents don't get paid unless you get published, so you don't lose anything if you get rejected.

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