Saturday, December 13, 2008

Submissions Volume Explained

34 comments:

literaticat said...

methinks your diagram is mistaken. shouldn't the low (or practically nil) submission rate be where high grasp of reality and high talent meet?

(And then, shouldn't the size of the intersection be different, though that would not be as pretty?)

Barbara Martin said...

This chart speaks volumes about submissions.

Editorial Anonymous said...

literaticat:
Sigh! Always with the smart comments. Can't you just enjoy the pretty colors?

Merry Monteleone said...

I'm wondering who's got the better shot, the ones with the high talent/high grasp of reality, or the high talent/ no grasp of reality?

graywave said...

Oh great, you like pretty colours too! Can I send you my manuscript? I wrote it in green crayon. (They don't let us have real pens here.)

Kate Lord Brown said...

Maybe T-shirts would be a good idea with all the pretty colours? No talent No Grasp of Reality - (go to the round filing cabinet, but cute t-shirt)

Ebony McKenna. said...

This chart speaks to me.

ae said...

If this is a Venn Diagram shouldn't there be two lows and two highs for the submission rates (As opposed to three highs and one low)? Maybe I am wrong. Just a thought.


I do like the colors especially the green/blue. Not so much the green/pink... although it is not too bad.

jeanne said...

Ahhh, pretty bubbles.

Can't you tell us your real identity so I can send you everything I've ever written? You'll adore my 10-volume poetry collection, "I Love my Dog".

Kimberly Lynn said...

I know several writers who have sent hundreds of queries and/or manuscripts to every publishing company known to mankind. Okay, I’m exaggerating a little. I always felt like I was dropping the ball by not doing this, but then I read somewhere on a blog that if you query every publishing house with a manuscript and then decide to seek representation later, the agent will likely decline your project because there would be no one left to submit it to. I have to add that two of the writers I referred to did indeed get published while another went to acquisitions twice with her novel. Hhmmm . . .

What I want to know is how these types of writers manage to personalize each query and cover letter? They can’t possibly be researching the editors and the books they publish at this rate, and I’m guessing this is why they probably ultimately end up in slush piles.

ChristaCarol said...

Very pretty. And interesting. Makes sense to me.

Colorado Writer said...

This looks like a math problem.

How do I know which writer I am?

Mummy said...

Hmmmm I think I may be stuck in that small white area right in the middle........

Adrian said...

Is this one of those cases where I should think outside the bubbles? Wait, that might be my weak grasp on reality again... ;)

Judy said...

Very nice chart, and beautiful colors...a couple of questions:
Are the no clue/high talent as likely to get published as the very aware/high talent? Is the no clue author harder for the editor to work with, and does that influence the editor's decision to publish his/her good story?

CC said...

I used to think I was in the "high talent," "high grasp of reality" part.

Several books written and zero books sold, I'm now leaning toward the the "no talent," "no grasp of reality" part.

Damn.

cynjay said...

So which color combinations will go on to self publish?

Criss said...

Missing variable: laziness. Or high commitment to procrastination.

:P

eluper said...

I live in that little, tiny piece of white between all the circles. There should be an arrow pointing there that says: Eric Luper and that one chimpanzee who typed the Complete Works of Shakespeare.

ae said...

Thinking outside of the bubble. Good one Adrian!

(The box is getting kind of old and beat up.)

And after you get your first contract, you can celebrate and pop the cork and think outside of the bottle.

Adrian said...

Funny. :) Although there might be a new contract clause floating around somewhere that could significantly lower the number of celebratory bottles I have planned... ;)

bootsandbibles said...

Shouldn't there be a low self-esteem area, perhaps somewhere near the high talent/no grasp of reality area, where all the writers who are good but are convinced they suck and thus never submit go?

I know quite a few of these...

Deaf Brown Trash Punk said...

I belong to the NO TALENT group

*sigh*

Deirdre Mundy said...

You know, after a year of being in the "no grasp on reality" bubble, (They'll pluck my PB from the slush! Of course they will! Even though the only things I've ever sold are MG poems and short stories!)
I decided to buckle down, write MG novels, and try to find an AGENT instead of an editor.

So I've switched to the reality bubble. Now as for talent? Umm... am I comparing myself to the crazies in the slush or to my favorite authors? It makes a difference, doesn't it?

Sandra Patterson said...

This reminds me of the floor covering in my granny's bathroom. Have you ever considered a career as an interior decorator? Or not?
Seriously, these used to be called Venn Diagrams when I was at school. But shouldn't you have included "hopelessly optimistic"?

RA said...

But that's the point, AE -- they all expect to be published, except for those who know they have no talent. That's why the slush pile is so deep.

L to the Aura said...

We should create a new diagram with an overlap that demonstrates: no talent + no grasp of reality + high degree of fame = high publishing rates/inevitable publishing. I'm swiftly learning that in the world of print fame precedes talent.

But yes, I enjoy the pastels.

ae said...

Ah. Clearly, I have no grasp on Venn Diagrams. :[

Adrian said...

I've also been thinking that there should be a third bubble that shows time learning the craft. I suspect talented but new writers probably submit more often with lower quality stuff, when they're starting out, but less often with higher quality stuff at the end. (or is that where the agent bubble kicks in, with a whole new diagram?)

Hmmm... maybe I should just enjoy the colored bubbles and stop thinking about this so hard. ;)

Deirdre Mundy said...

So, EA, now this leads to the question:

How do you KNOW if you have talent?

I mean, there are always going to be books that knock your socks off, right, that make you think 'I WISH I could have written that."

And a lot of my favorite writers STARTED as pretty good/above average and sort of evolved into "So amazingly talented I could never do that!" with a lot of time and hard work.

So how can a not yet or barely published writer gauge whether or not she has enough talent?

A Mathmatician said...

I'm with literaticat. Don't quit your day job.
: )

Anonymous said...

I feel a degree of your pain, EA. I read a much more manageable pile of slush for a small children's publisher. Have you had a recent spate of people who take happy snaps of their pets and write a story to go with them? They're definitely in the low talent, low grasp of reality quadrant of your pretty diagram.

Anonymous said...

As a college English teacher of students who frequently have higher expectations about their grades than their work deserves, I am seeing new ways of applying this diagram. Would you mind if I used it at the beginning of the term (with a few changes) to explain why everyone doesn't get an A--not quite the same as "why everyone doesn't get published"--but close. And maybe it will prevent a few of them from contributing to the fire trap in your "kitchen" in a few years!

Editorial Anonymous said...

Please feel free.