Romance Publishers: Finding
the Good Ones
© Judy Bagshaw - All Rights Reserved
You've worked hard over several long
months, perhaps even years to complete, what in your eyes,
is the perfect romance novel. You've polished it until it
shines. Now comes the time to send your precious literary
child out into the world. How do you know that the
publisher you've chosen is a good one? How can you be sure
After working so hard, you certainly
don't want to be conned or taken for a financial ride. You
don't want to see your work treated badly. So, it's
important for you to do your homework. Take a good look at
what's out there and make an informed decision.
Now I should say up front here, that my
experience is solely with electronic publishers, that is to
say, legitimate royalty paying publishers who run their
businesses online. These are small press independent
publishers. That's my frame of reference. But I think many
of the same principles apply when searching out one of the
larger brick and mortar houses.
The internet makes it relatively easy to
research publishers, particularly the indie pubs working
online these days, and there are many. A quick Google
search of electronic publishers will bring up a huge number
of hits. But there are some easier places to start.
Renowned sci-fi/fantasy author Piers
Anthony has compiled a huge listing of electronic
publishers on his website www.hipiers.com Mr.Anthony
has, for the past few years, taken a great interest in the
e-publishing industry, and in fact, has his books published
by Mundania Press www.mundania.com He has
compiled a list which he keeps updated with such
information as who has gone out of business, who has
complaints of poor treatment of authors, who offers a poor
contract, or a good one, who is a classy operation. It is
an excellent place to begin researching homes for your
Another site is Preditors and Editors.
They act as a watch dog group for the
electronic publishing industry, and a red flag from them is
worth watching for. Like Mr. Anthony, they list the various
publishers with comments, and keep their list updated
EPIC, the Electronic Publishing
Internet Connection, has in recent years become the
leading e-publishing professional organization. Citing
that they are the "voice of electronic publishing", they
offer lots of helpful information on their site. Most
notable is their sample contract and the red flags to
watch out for. Great homework for any author.
Another step to take in searching for a
publishing home for your book, is to visit various
publisher's sites. Get a feel for them. See how they
conduct business. Check out their contract, if they offer
it online (many do). Compare it to EPIC's model contract.
Look at their writer's guidelines. See what they're
actively looking for. Even purchase a book or two to get a
sense of the quality of the work they publish. Most ebooks
run $5.00 and under, so this is an affordable thing to do.
Often, even the tone of a website, will tell you if this is
a place you'd be comfortable placing your work. Be wary of
any place that asks for payment for services, like editing.
No reputable publisher will ever ask for money from their
authors for this kind of thing.
There are many yahoo groups for writers,
where you can join and relate to other writers. Places like
WRW (World Romance Writers) and EPIC's social list give you
the chance to ask fellow writers about their publishers and
publishing experiences. There's nothing like getting the
information from an inside source.
Other groups like Books We Love, and Divas of Romance are
promotional groups for authors and publishers. On their
sites, you can visit author pages and see who their
publishers are. Soon you'll see publisher names cropping
up time and time again. These are publishers you might
want to take a closer look at.
The important thing to remember, after
all your hard work to create that wonderful romance novel,
is to do your homework. It's a little bit of work to
protect your precious creation.
Judy's publisher's are Draumr Publishing, Fictionwise, and Pearlsong Press.
About the Author: Judy
Bagshaw has been published since 2000. Writing
romance featuring full-figured heroines, her
publishing credits include 4 novels, 1 collection of
short stories, and short stories in three
anthologies. She was also part of the writing team
for the Ginn Reading Series, and Reaching Readers
Series, used in many elementary schools. Retired from
teaching, she writes full-time from her home in
Ontario, Canada. Visit Judy's