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Has anyone published a book with a non-jewish publisher?

 
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amother




OP
 

Post Tue, Jun 28 2022, 7:13 pm
I want to write a book! I have (what I think) is a great plot line and I would love to actually do this.

The story would be kind of unusual for a frum audience, and I’m not sure how it would go over. Should I try my luck with a non-frum publisher? Is there a chance that they would publish a book from a random, unknown person?
Would love advice from anyone more knowledgeable..


ETA:The book would be for young adults
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Einikel




 
 
 
 

Post Tue, Jun 28 2022, 7:42 pm
I think @kiwi13 had.
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LK1




 
 
 
 

Post Tue, Jun 28 2022, 7:48 pm
I once saw an interview with Ruthie Perlman and she was saying how she tried to do it and it was really hard and not worth it.

I honestly think that if you could get a publisher to print it, it would go over well. People are open to reading different things and getting bored of same old.

Anyway, Good luck with whatever you end up doing! And I would love to read it!
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amother




OP
 

Post Tue, Jun 28 2022, 8:04 pm
LK1 wrote:
I once saw an interview with Ruthie Perlman and she was saying how she tried to do it and it was really hard and not worth it.

I honestly think that if you could get a publisher to print it, it would go over well. People are open to reading different things and getting bored of same old.

Anyway, Good luck with whatever you end up doing! And I would love to read it!


Thanks! I’m not sure that it would be “acceptable” for a frum publisher unless I tweak it a lot. I guess I can just try to change it, but I kind of like it the way it is!
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amother




OP
 

Post Tue, Jun 28 2022, 8:06 pm
Einikel wrote:
I think @kiwi13 had.


Thanks. Maybe I’ll pm her. She’s way more talented than me though!
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amother




Salmon
 

Post Tue, Jun 28 2022, 8:15 pm
OP if you are on facebook, you may want to look up a group called 20booksTo50k. The premise is that if you self-publish 20 books, you can earn $50k a year. The numbers aren't hard and fast but the main thing is that it's for people who are self-publishing. The group is very supportive.
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amother




OP
 

Post Tue, Jun 28 2022, 8:35 pm
amother [ Salmon ] wrote:
OP if you are on facebook, you may want to look up a group called 20booksTo50k. The premise is that if you self-publish 20 books, you can earn $50k a year. The numbers aren't hard and fast but the main thing is that it's for people who are self-publishing. The group is very supportive.


Thanks, I’ll look it up
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amother




Yolk
 

Post Wed, Jun 29 2022, 12:37 am
LK1 wrote:
I once saw an interview with Ruthie Perlman and she was saying how she tried to do it and it was really hard and not worth it.

I honestly think that if you could get a publisher to print it, it would go over well. People are open to reading different things and getting bored of same old.

Anyway, Good luck with whatever you end up doing! And I would love to read it!


[...]
Harry Potter was rejected by multiple pubishers before it was accepted so you probably need to be really really patient.
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Jello




 
 
 
 

Post Wed, Jun 29 2022, 3:23 am
A friend of mine has published multiple teen and teen books with a major non Jewish publisher. However, she started out as a teen publishing short stories in magazines (mostly sci fi and fantasy) so she already had some name recognition.
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amother




Snowdrop
 

Post Wed, Jun 29 2022, 4:29 am
amother [ OP ] wrote:
I want to write a book! I have (what I think) is a great plot line and I would love to actually do this.

The story would be kind of unusual for a frum audience, and I’m not sure how it would go over. Should I try my luck with a non-frum publisher? Is there a chance that they would publish a book from a random, unknown person?
Would love advice from anyone more knowledgeable..


ETA:The book would be for young adults


I’ve published a book (with a couple more on the way) with a non-frum publisher. It’s not an easy process and prepare yourself for a lot of rejection, especially if you’re writing YA in a super oversaturated market! But ultimately, it’s worth trying if you think you’ve got a great concept.

First: write the book. That’s got to be your complete focus! Writing and finishing the book is the one part of this that’s solely in your hands and most writers never wind up finishing their first manuscript. (It took me four years to actually buckle down and finish mine, which I promptly put aside and never actually tried to sell. The second book took under a month to write and did in fact sell.)

Then: you have a much higher chance of getting your book published if you do it with an agent. I recommend getting a querytracker account- it’s great for finding appropriate agents and keeping track of how they react. Query as many as you can- most get hundreds of queries a day and take only a couple, but if yours is good, it might be one of those.

After that, it’s in your agent’s hands! Even then it might mean many rejections. YA is a packed market right now and it’s a struggle to get into it. But books do get through, and if you’ve already written the book, there’s really no harm in trying! The hardest part for the writer is definitely the writing. Smile

Oh, and I do want to clarify re: JK Rowling– that’s an urban legend! She wasn’t rejected from any publishers. She got rejections from agents, who back then received paper copies of manuscripts and often send rejections not based on quality of the work but if they don’t specialize in a genre or are just too busy with their current authors. Publishers fought to have her. If you’ve got a great product, it’s possible to go far.

Hatzlacha!
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Amarante




 
 
 
 

Post Wed, Jun 29 2022, 5:54 am
Imamother Snowdrop is correct - in order to get published by a reputable publishing company you need to do it through a literary agent.

I am not a writer but I used to work for a large Manhattan based publisher years ago.

If you aren't published, then you absolutely need to submit a finished manuscript because no agent or publisher is going to deal with an unknown writer without the manuscript. If you are lucky enough to get an agent they will do the submissions as they are the ones who have the contacts with the actual editors and know who is looking for what.

Get a copy of Publishers Weekly to get some idea of how the business operates - it should be available at a library if you don't want to purchase a copy

While it is theoretically possible to make a living self publishing with digital books, it would be very difficult unless you are an extremely prolific writer who also is adept at self promotion through social media in order to build up a reader base. Ironically it is generally a place for mediocre or bad books in specific specialized genres that seem to be that market - romance; specific types of fantasy and I would suspect that frum literature would do okay as well - formulaic stories cranked out quickly - perhaps even series as that would hook a reader - I.e. the kind of "sweeping" story line covering a family or families through several generations and multiple tragedies, weddings, etc.
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Amarante




 
 
 
 

Post Wed, Jun 29 2022, 9:38 am
amother [ Salmon ] wrote:
OP if you are on facebook, you may want to look up a group called 20booksTo50k. The premise is that if you self-publish 20 books, you can earn $50k a year. The numbers aren't hard and fast but the main thing is that it's for people who are self-publishing. The group is very supportive.


Not to burst a bubble but one would have to be an extremely prolific writer in order to crank out 20 books each year AND would need to be able to self promote the books because otherwise they would get lost in all of the releases on amazon.

At the most you would be getting $2500 per book - translate that into hours needed to write and format a book and see what the actual hourly income would be.

Honestly if you are capable of writing 20 books per year, I would imagine that you could get a job that pays more than $50,000 per year.
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amother




Salmon
 

Post Wed, Jun 29 2022, 1:26 pm
Amarante wrote:
Not to burst a bubble but one would have to be an extremely prolific writer in order to crank out 20 books each year AND would need to be able to self promote the books because otherwise they would get lost in all of the releases on amazon.

At the most you would be getting $2500 per book - translate that into hours needed to write and format a book and see what the actual hourly income would be.

Honestly if you are capable of writing 20 books per year, I would imagine that you could get a job that pays more than $50,000 per year.


I suggested joining the group to get a feel for it. Many people actually make far more than $50,000 per year and of course many don't make anything. The idea is not that you need to write 20 books a year but that once you've written a certain number of books, the sales will increase exponentially because by that point, you should have an established readership base. And yes you will need to learn how to build a readership base, do Internet marketing and whatnot.

As for getting a job that pays similar, it's very often the opposite. Many professional working people are simply burned out at their desk jobs and decided to try to fulfill lifelong dreams of writing for a living. I've recently read posts by former doctors and lawyers who are now full-time indie authors.

To be clear, I'm not speaking from experience. The group might be worth OP checking out, that's all.
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amother




OP
 

Post Wed, Jun 29 2022, 8:01 pm
amother [ Snowdrop ] wrote:
I’ve published a book (with a couple more on the way) with a non-frum publisher. It’s not an easy process and prepare yourself for a lot of rejection, especially if you’re writing YA in a super oversaturated market! But ultimately, it’s worth trying if you think you’ve got a great concept.

First: write the book. That’s got to be your complete focus! Writing and finishing the book is the one part of this that’s solely in your hands and most writers never wind up finishing their first manuscript. (It took me four years to actually buckle down and finish mine, which I promptly put aside and never actually tried to sell. The second book took under a month to write and did in fact sell.)

Then: you have a much higher chance of getting your book published if you do it with an agent. I recommend getting a querytracker account- it’s great for finding appropriate agents and keeping track of how they react. Query as many as you can- most get hundreds of queries a day and take only a couple, but if yours is good, it might be one of those.

After that, it’s in your agent’s hands! Even then it might mean many rejections. YA is a packed market right now and it’s a struggle to get into it. But books do get through, and if you’ve already written the book, there’s really no harm in trying! The hardest part for the writer is definitely the writing. Smile

Oh, and I do want to clarify re: JK Rowling– that’s an urban legend! She wasn’t rejected from any publishers. She got rejections from agents, who back then received paper copies of manuscripts and often send rejections not based on quality of the work but if they don’t specialize in a genre or are just too busy with their current authors. Publishers fought to have her. If you’ve got a great product, it’s possible to go far.

Hatzlacha!


Thanks for the info. So you’re saying that I should just send it out many agents?
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amother




OP
 

Post Wed, Jun 29 2022, 8:04 pm
Amarante wrote:
Imamother Snowdrop is correct - in order to get published by a reputable publishing company you need to do it through a literary agent.

I am not a writer but I used to work for a large Manhattan based publisher years ago.

If you aren't published, then you absolutely need to submit a finished manuscript because no agent or publisher is going to deal with an unknown writer without the manuscript. If you are lucky enough to get an agent they will do the submissions as they are the ones who have the contacts with the actual editors and know who is looking for what.

Get a copy of Publishers Weekly to get some idea of how the business operates - it should be available at a library if you don't want to purchase a copy

While it is theoretically possible to make a living self publishing with digital books, it would be very difficult unless you are an extremely prolific writer who also is adept at self promotion through social media in order to build up a reader base. Ironically it is generally a place for mediocre or bad books in specific specialized genres that seem to be that market - romance; specific types of fantasy and I would suspect that frum literature would do okay as well - formulaic stories cranked out quickly - perhaps even series as that would hook a reader - I.e. the kind of "sweeping" story line covering a family or families through several generations and multiple tragedies, weddings, etc.


This may be a naive question, but I’m wondering if I should be concerned about sending a completed manuscript to an agent. Is there a risk of someone taking the manuscript as their own?
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amother




Snowdrop
 

Post Wed, Jun 29 2022, 8:40 pm
amother [ OP ] wrote:
Thanks for the info. So you’re saying that I should just send it out many agents?


Eventually, once it’s written. You’ll have to learn how to write a query and how to find agents best suited to you, but that’s all a long way down the road- writing the manuscript comes first!
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Amarante




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Jun 30 2022, 12:35 pm
amother [ OP ] wrote:
This may be a naive question, but I’m wondering if I should be concerned about sending a completed manuscript to an agent. Is there a risk of someone taking the manuscript as their own?


You place the appropriate copyright notice on the front page of a manuscript. It is not necessary to actually register with the US Copyright Office for protection but you do want to make sure that there is the copyright notice

You would have proof of submission of the manuscript on a certain date plus the manuscript.

Some people send themselves a copy of the manuscript via registered mail and don't open it so there is additional proof that the manuscript was in existence and copyrighted by the author.

Keep in mind that you can't copyright ideas for the most part but reputable agents and publishers are not going to risk their business by stealing.
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amother




Amaryllis
 

Post Thu, Jun 30 2022, 1:01 pm
I would recommend joining an organization like the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. https://www.scbwi.org/

I work at a very large children's publishing house, and while I'm not in aquistions, this is a suggestion I've heard made many times. You can connect with other writers in the business who can offer valuable advice.
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DustyDiamonds




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Jun 30 2022, 1:26 pm
If you look up The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook on Amazon, it has over 29000 reviews, and was published by my friend, a frum woman. She sent it out to multiple agents, I think it took over a year to get the deal, many were worried about copyright issues with HP.
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