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Friday, November 30, 2012


I received another rejection yesterday for The Pirate's Wraith. It was a very sweet, very well-written rejection, but the basic message was negative. I went to the Liberty States Fiction Writers conference last March and talked to four editors--none of them leaped at the chance to publish my book. I went to the New Jersey Romance Writers conference last month and had interviews with two agents. Both of them have now rejected the book.

Trying to land a publisher or an agent is not an easy task--even though I've written plenty of other books. It's like banging your head against a brick wall, which is why I reissued Prince of the Mist on my own and I am glad I did.

Above is a colorful pie chart from Metric Junkie. It illustrates the sale of my Kindle books at Amazon. Prince of the Mist accounts for half of my Kindle sales this year so far at Amazon. My books have sold at other distributors as well, but Metric Junkie doesn't pick up the statistics from other sites and Metric Junkie only allows me to list ten books.

I look at the chart every now and then to boost my morale. I have not sold a lot of books but there are people willing to download my stories and live in my fantasy worlds for a while.

It is great to have a publisher. Having a professional edit the story and an illustrator design a cover allows me to spend my time writing more stories. I am delighted that the Prism Book Group is going to publish Daddy Wanted, but The Pirate's Wraith is not appropriate for their line.

Oh well. My imagination is far too active.

I may try one more publisher, but if that turns out to be a dead end I'll be releasing The Pirate's Wraith myself. I do not enjoy bashing my head against brick walls.


Rose Anderson said...

I'm sorry that worked out that way for you Penelope. 20 years ago, I considered writing a book about rejections I was so familiar with it. And that was back in the "send full manuscript" days. I think I went through a forest of trees. Of the dozens of manuscripts sent, only two publishing houses replied and both were form letters saying simply, "we're not interested in unsolicited work" The thing is, I couldn't get an agent to represent me either because in was stuck in the classic catch 22. Back then, I never would have imagined how I'd go from children's literature to what I have out now, but it did get me into this crowded business and that phase of my career as an author is coming to a close. I've learned a lot, and armed with knowledge, I have those very same children's novels waiting on covers at this very moment. The internet makes it easy to hire editors and cover artists. Don't be too disappointed. You're already a published author, and it can only get better. :)

Penelope Marzec said...


I'm glad your children's novels are going to released. The internet has made things easier. I was a bit apprehensive about reissuing my Prince of the Mist, but it turned out to be a good decision. Going the traditional route is exhausting, time-consuming, and eats at the soul.

Readers are the new gate keepers. They get to decide what they want--and that's really all that matters.

MarkD60 said...

I thought that once you got your first book published, the rest were easy...
siteddis 7

Irene said...

Didja every think of just changing the title?
Pirates are not exactly "hot" nowadays. Maybe if you called it "The Sea Ghost"....

Or how about "The Tale of the Salty Bloodsucker"?

Louann Carroll said...

The comment above didn't turn out right, sorry. Anyway, thank you for the graph. It puts things in perspective.

I have two books out with CMP and one completed manuscript I've toyed with self-publishing. It just seems overwhelming to do it on your own.

How difficult is it and what did it cost?

Penelope Marzec said...


Pirate romances are doing very well at Amazon. Pirates are perennial favorites with some readers. However, The Tale of the Salty Bloodsucker would certainly reach a wider audience. :^)

Penelope Marzec said...


Reissuing Prince of the Mist did not cost much. I bought the image of the young man for the cover but I designed the cover on my own. That was the fun part. Fortunately, the cover has worked.

The book had already been edited since it was previously published. However, I had to format the whole thing and that was tedious. I read through several instructions and help guides very carefully.

The print edition involved several tries before I got it right. Nevertheless, I did it.

It is easier to have someone else do all that but you can do it yourself--if you set your mind to it.

Unknown said...

Ah... the list of rejections... let me count the ways I loathe thee! But, with every rejection, I've learned something. I've also toyed with the whole self-pub thing, I've even experimented with Kindle formatting. If all else fails, I may give it a try (though it scares the be-gee-susses out of me!)

Good Luck! (persistence is not a bad word)

Dottie :)

Chicki Brown said...

For several years I went the submission/rejection route, had many "nice" rejections and several close calls with major publishers. Finally I got sick of it and decided to self-publish. It was the best decision I've ever made. So far I have six books on Kindle/Nook/Kobo and a few on Smashwords. Discovering that the editors were wrong and I DO have a devoted readership has been an eye-opener.

Penelope Marzec said...


Sometimes I've learned things from rejections, but most often all I've gotten was a deadend.

Self-pubbing has been worth it for me. Give it a try.

Penelope Marzec said...


Hearing about your success is inspiring! Keep up the good work. :^)

Louann Carroll said...

This could be an option. As soon as Gemini 2 is off to the editor I'm taking a closer look. Thank you for the insight.

jenny milchman said...

Pen, I think it's great you can do both!! Don't bash your head--it contains the stories :)--and how great so many readers are finding you.

Penelope Marzec said...


Yes, I have to take care of the old noggin. No more bashing it against impenetrable walls!