Posts Tagged ‘law enforcement’

Hard time for publishers and authors

November 27, 2017

Let there be no doubt about it, a writer’s worth in the marketplace is quickly diminishing. Google, Amazon and other giants of the free media age have created a feeding frenzy that’s eating away at an author’s ability to gain just compensation for their work, and larger publishers have moved to a greater emphasis on current best sellers and celebrities.

Smaller publishers are trying to fill the breach and CopWorld Press is in that mix. We want to find and publish law enforcement authors in this increasingly difficult environment, but that doesn’t mean we have lower standards, just a willingness to work with and help authors who have the goods. But there’s a right way and a wrong way to approach any publisher. What follows is a true-life example of exactly the wrong way to do it.

I recently met with an author who’d submitted a manuscript for consideration because we live in the same town and I wanted to help her along her journey. The tag line on the email with her attached manuscript had included the title and the words “a fiction novel.”¬† I asked her to define a novel. She had no idea that, by definition, it is fiction. She went on to say that she was somewhat confused because her story was partly made up and partly true, and, therefore, the term novel might not apply.

I spent about 40 minutes with her, during which time she twice upbraided me for not having taken the time to read beyond the prologue and initial chapter. I responded that one problem with her manuscript is the too lengthy chapters but gave her an opportunity to provide a verbal synopsis. She did so, without including anything approaching a plot. I asked her what genre her book is. When she acknowledged that she had no idea, I told her that my brief read and her synopsis indicated that it’s a police procedural. When I defined the term at her request, she declared that I was wrong.

I provided a brief history of my four decade journey as a writer, mostly focusing on the lows, and she assured me that her story depicted a female’s experiences in law enforcement which should give her an edge. I agreed that it’s important to get more police books out from the female perspective but went on to tell her some of the many weaknesses her manuscript displayed, including misspellings, tense changes and poor syntax. I urged her to read several police procedurals and books on writing whose titles I provided and recommended that she carefully consider my feedback. Part of that feedback was that the road leading to the professional writing level is a long and arduous one that requires research and a willingness to learn from mistakes. She responded by reminding me that she’d had a couple female friends read her book who “really loved it”– but she would consider my point of view too.

As I stood to leave, I resisted the temptation to expand on or reiterate some of her writing’s failings, instead simply saying something very close to–Just remember, I’m a professional writer and a publisher and they’re not. She responded by assuring me that she intended to pursue other opportunities?

As I descended the few steps to the street, I wondered which aphorism was more applicable, the one from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount to not “cast pearls before swine” or the one that guarantees that no good deed goes unpunished….”

 

 

A Special Offer

February 1, 2012
Hi Everyone! Hoping this post finds you happy and healthy.
I’m sending along some exciting news regarding my debut novel, “The Sticking Place!”¬† The LA Times says “it has a high-minded protagonist, rookie (cop) Luke Jones, who is slowly coming to terms with the fact that law enforcement is a blunt instrument not altogether suited to fixing society’s deeper problems.” San Diego’s Mayor and former police chief says it’s “a must read for … anyone with an appreciation for realistic literature that depicts what it will always mean to be a cop.” A police reporter says it “has all the elements of a Shakespearean play; political intrigue, betrayal, comic relief, and an understanding of the dark parts of the soul.”
It is with gratitude I can announce that this past November, editors at Amazon hand-selected it for an ebook sale at $2.99 and sales took off to Best Seller status!! With this good fortune, I’m taking the cue and offering Kindle and E-Reader versions directly on my websitewww.lukejonesnovels.comat the same low price!! It’s important to share this low price opportunity with your friends and social networks¬† because there’s a special benefit in doing so.
Throughout the remainder of 2012, I’ll be working with a different charity/not-for-profit organization each month AND donating ten percent of all sales generated from my personal website directly to the designated charity!! This February I’ve chosen San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter Association as the recipient since much of the book is set in the Quarter at the beginning of its amazing transformation from skid row to nightlife destination. I’d appreciate your recommendations and/or suggestions for any organizations that could benefit from this opportunity!!
Please take a moment and forward this information to friends and associates and share it on Facebook and any other social media platforms you participate in. I want to make this a win-win for everyone!!
All the best,