Publishers will make you jump through so many hoops that you are so unmotivated at the end that you feel like just giving up. But don’t, If writing is not intended to be your mainstream employment maybe select the most appropriate Publisher to submit to, then if no luck go for self-publishing .
I think maybe the publishers are shooting themselves in the foot. The submissions process needs to be simplified, they need to be more helpful and encouraging to writers, so they don’t go strait to eBooks and self publishing.
They are fighting hard to compete with all the online, techno industry, by really narrowing the topics, book style down. I was told that if they cannot see a very strong market for the story, it doesn’t matter haw fantastic the story is, they will not publish it.
Yes following mainstream is suppose to be good business but they should be targeting the reading experience, because once the techno generation grows up if there is no draw card for paperbacks traditional publishers are gone.
Don’t get me wrong I would try publishers first every time, I just wish it wasn’t so painful.
This is Jem from my Young adults novelette ‘Perceptions’ which is going through the publishing process now.