On Writing : Help? by Katy O'Hara

Katy O'Hara


I'm stuck inside a hole, well that's what it feels like anyways, running around in circles, screaming with your hand in the air. Hoping someone out there can hear you? Yeah, I feel that way at times. Anyways, I've written a story, I believe it's really good, but I am not sure what my next step is, I've shared it on some sites trying to get public, so far no luck. Does anyone have suggestions? Any way I can find an agent? Anything?

Kyle Climans

You could copyright your story and try to get it published. I think there's also a website which allows you to self-publish your work, but I'm not up to speed on how to do that yet. There was an article on Cracked.com which had a link to learn more about self-publishing, but I can't find it right now. I do know that John Cheese wrote it, though.

Louis Sihler

My friend Izabella Beau is self published. Look her up on this site.

Xun Silverstar

One idea is to try out your story, reading a part of it in front of people. For example in a cafe or a local radio station. Then talk with the listeners and hear their responses.

Stephen Foster

submit it to short story contests! have a public reading of it (even selections) video them and put them on Stage32….

Richard "RB" Botto

I know I come back to this answer often, but I would use a part of every day to network. You want to win champions of you and your work. Getting an agent isn't easier, but it becomes easier when people are willing to speak on your behalf. But that all begins with curating and cultivating relationships.

Katy O'Hara

Thank you guys so much! I will definitely use what you said and see what it does for me. I have been feeling so stuck, but maybe this will be a next big step. Thanks again everyone!

Ernest Langston

Get a copy of The Writer magazine, check the listings in the markets section (last several pages) and submit to the appropriate ones. Read short story journals & reviews. Most important suggestion here is, keep writing until someone accepts one of your stories.

Leonard D. Hilley II

Hi Katy. Several questions: How long is your story? What is the format (short story, script, or novel)? What is the genre? If this is literary fiction, there are several good resources online. QueryTracker and AgentQuery. These are great sites because you can search for specific genres, get feedback from other authors on these agents, and the best way to submit your query. Writer's Digest lists new agents looking for submissions. Always search Preditors & Editors for the list of shady literary agents. NEVER pay an 'agent' to read your work. A legitimate agent won't charge you a reading fee. Although not all agents are members in the AAR guild, it is good to check. Most literary agents accept e-queries. Some only take snail mail. Be prepared to send out lots and lots of queries. You might not get replies from a lot of them. Never BCC e-queries. The query you write needs to be error proof. Writer's Digest online has some examples of how to write a great query letter and how NOT to. If you choose to self-publish, avoid Print-on-Demand companies. They often charge excessive amounts of money for things you can do for FREE. Amazon KDP allows authors to upload digital books to sell on the Kindle format around the world. Draft2Digital is also good for digital formats. They place digital books on iBooks, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Tolino, and a couple others. Again, they don't charge you an upfront fee but get a small percentage for each sale. You can make print versions of novels via CreateSpace FREE of charge, if you format the book yourself. There are charges if you want them to format it, but the process isn't difficult to do. For self-publishing, hire an editor. For book covers, one of the best sites I've found is Selfpubbookcovers. The reason I prefer them is you're able to put the text on the cover, choose the fonts you want, and download both eBook and Paperback covers in 72dpi and 300dpi. Good luck to you and your work! Best to you!

David Taylor

I quite like 'Authors Publish Magazine' email alerts. They give Agent, publisher, magazine and others looking for submissions.

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