$700 on the publishing industry roulette wheel...
May 2, 2010 1:54 PM Subscribe
I have written a literary science fiction novel. I am confident that it is salable, but I am so far having difficulty finding an agent. I am considering going to the Backspace Writer's Conference
but am uncertain as to whether the $700 cost would be a good investment.
posted by 256 to writing & language (12 answers total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
So, I completed the third and final draft of my novel in early February. It's 120,000 words long and in the same vein as "Slaughterhouse Five" or "The Time Traveler's Wife." I think it would be equally at home on the science fiction rack or the one simply labeled 'literature.'
I am confident in my writing and am very serious about pursuing a career as a writer.
I've written a query letter and a synopsis. I less impressed with them than I am with the novel, but I still think they're pretty good. I've sent queries out to twenty agents so far, in four rounds of five starting mid-february. I have received rejections from eight of those(two of which requested partial manuscripts before declining), have partials out currently to three, and have not heard back from the other nine.
I was hoping to have generated more interest by now, but I am not disheartened. I am, however, wondering what else I should be doing. One thing that successful writers I have spoken with have mentioned is the possibility of going to conferences to get some face time with agents and publishers.
I live in Philadelphia, which means New York is relatively convenient. Coming up at the end of May is the Backspace Writer's Conference. The thing is that registration is $500, and I figure it will probably cost me another $200 in travel/lodging.
If I were wealthy, I would just go and hope for the best. But I'm not wealthy, and I have a two month old daughter. $700 is an amount of money I can rustle up, but it's not an insignificant sum to me right now. So I'm having difficulty determining whether this would be a good investment or a frivolous expenditure.
So, should I go? And if I do go, how do I make the most of it? And if I don't go, is there anything else I should be doing? Some better financial investment I could make in my career? Or do I just keep sending out queries and working on the next book?