Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Queries to Editors & Other Authors for Cover Blurb

Received an email from Armand Rosamilia at Carnifex Press, which is going to publish my novella, Starbeast. (Gotta find a new title.)

He asked for an author’s bio, a Word attachment of the novella, a cover blurb suggestion, a dedication and/or acknowledgments and, the big one, “could I collect some blurbs from editors and writers I know for the jacket and/or promotion?”.

Okay. I hate doing my bio but I got that done. Didn’t turn out too dreadful or pompous. Did another run through on the novella. Pretty clean manuscript. My Spellcheck hates the slang I use however. Wrote then rewrote then rewrote again a blurb regarding the plot of the novel. I hate this even more than doing my bio. It’s turned out okay. Serviceable is a good word for it. Dedication done. This one will be dedicated to Mom. He also wanted a photo. Forgot to send that. The only one I have on my computer is about five years old. Haven’t changed much except my hair’s shorter … and grayer … a few more wrinkles. Stop. Don’t go off on that tangent.


Ask editors and authors I know to read my novella and send a blurb. Well, what if they don’t like it? Never mind that. Who could I send this request to? I know three writers personally – authors Wendy Hornsby and Raymond Obstfeld and screenwriter Mark Sevi. They’ll get emails.

I’ve corresponded with Greg Gifune, author of Drago Descending and Night Work. I’ve known him since he was the editor/publisher of the now-defunct magazines The Edge: Tales of Suspense and Burning Sky: Adventures in Science Fiction Terror. Good guy. I’ll try him.

Simon Wood, author of Accidents Waiting to Happen, and I have passed a few emails and I receive his newsletter. I’ll try him.

I’ve had a good relationship with editors (and writers themselves) Dan Blackston, SFReader and Pitch Black Books; Dave Felts, SFReader; Howard Jones, Flashing Swords; and Jason Sizemore, Apex Science Fiction and Horror Digest. I’ll ask them, too.

Okay. That pretty much uses up my personal database. But wait. I have had some minor correspondence, and I mean minor, with some other writers. Should I try them? A couple have been on the best-seller lists and a couple others are award winners. What the hey. What’s the worse that could happen? They probably won’t respond or won’t have time for a small press novella. But some might—a really big word might—say yes. Don’t know if you don’t try. So off email requests go to Douglas Clegg, Jeffrey Deaver, Geoffrey Landis, Brad Meltzer, Scott Nicholson, Allen Steele, and Stuart Woods.
I’ll let you happen what happens. I’m curious myself.
(Oh, the picture up top. I feel like the guy on the surfboard. All I'm looking for is a cool ride but underneath is ... and something could happen but might not ... now I'm rambling. Bye for now.)


James said...

I've been wondering about collecting endorsements myself. It's fine when you know someone, even just a little, but I haven't figured out the etiquette of approaching someone who doesn't know me from Adam and saying, "Please, sir/ma'am, would you blurb my work?"

Christopher55 said...


I'm a little nervous about the people at the bottom of my list. Okay, more than a little. If my novella was with a major house, the editor would probably do this but with a small press the writer needs to help out. I don't mind.

I figure it doesn't hurt to ask. What's the worst that could happen? Most writers are very courteous and generous people. Maybe they don't respond at all, maybe they say no, maybe they tell me to go ... I used to be a manager a Southwestern-style restaurant with a bar. I doubt anyone could say anything to me that I haven't heard before and was told to me by a professional.

As I writer, you have to be prepared for rejection. It comes with the territory. Not everyone will like what you write. That's okay, I don't like everything I read. I'm off on a tangent. I'll let you know what the responds are to my queries.