Friday, November 03, 2006

In search of a regional publisher

Despite the recent setback with Pelican Publishing, I am growing more convinced that a direct approach to a small regional publisher makes the most sense now.

The 9 state regional marketing plan I laid out in my Pelican Publishing query letter will definitely work. Now I just need to find a regional publisher who accepts historical fiction.

32 metropolitan markets in the following 9 states have a strong connection to the characters in Fort Desperate: Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Missouri, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Florida, and Kentucky.

I get conflicting signals on the genre.

Lots of articles written around 2000 saying historical fiction was on the upswing. But today, publishers apparently are cutting back on their fiction offerings.

Pelican has dropped it, and a Nashville regional publisher, Cumberland House, that I was considering, also no longer publishes fiction.

There's a group in Iowa called Camp Pope that specializes in the Trans-Mississippi of the Civil War, but that looks more like a self publishing group.

I keep sending query letters to agents, but, now with about 30 rejections and counting, it doesn't look promising that one of these will come back with a "love your work gotta sign you up" response.

So, I am looking for a regional publisher in the South or the Southeast. Small, but established, that will look at a submission without an agent.

Any ideas ?

UPDATE: November 13

I have an idea. My idea is to keep plugging away for an agent. I will still be on the look out for a good regional publisher, but after fixing my query letter (see above) I am thinking it is pretty good. Good enough to snag an agent.

We shall see.

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