Things I’d do differently if I were just beginning to write and hoped to be published.
1. I’d have my website up and running before I submitted my work to a publisher. I’d make the website bold and catchy, and reference it in my letter of submission. I would NOT wait until I was pubbed and needed it.
2. I’d have at least two friends ready to critique your masterpiece before I sent it to a publisher. Friends already authors are the best. Nobody, but nobody, can catch all your glaring errors by themselves.
3. I’d be sure I understand POV and be especially careful to stick to one point of view per scene. I didn’t at first, and still tend to blithely head-hop, not even knowing I’m doing the big no-no. My current editor, the wonderful April Chapman, is deadly on catching my errors. Yes, I know some of the most successful authors blithely ignore POV and head-hop all over the place. None of us are Nora Roberts, at least not yet.
4. This is tied to three. Check and recheck the rules of submission at the publishing house you plan to submit to.
Ellora’s Cave, where I’m lucky enough to have a new series going, will not permit the slightest change of POV. I’m just lucky I have a patient editor. A newcomer can’t afford to twist the rules in the slightest. But it’s also important to be sure your book is submitted in the right format, and right type, the right everything.
5. Spend a lot of time perfecting your submission letter. Again, give them exactly what they want, plus a smidgeon of originality and humor. But don’t come off like a smart aleck.
Stormy Pursuit, the second book in the Passionate Pursuit series, will be out quite soon. It’s undergoing it’s last edits, catching all the nasty POV changes which I’m still bad at. Forbidden Pursuit has been accepted and I’ve sent in the cover art request. Dangerous Pursuit is in the hands of my beta editor. Haven’t named the next one yet but it takes up the story of the Erricksen family with the first grandchildren. Elves all, I’m sure they will have passionate and lives that make their elfish peaked ears show enough to enchant you all.