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February 20, 2011

Angry Robot Open Submission Month: March '11

Earlier today I spotted a tweet that Angry Robot Books, a print and ebook publisher based in the UK, are opening their virtual doors to novel submissions for the entire month of March. Technically, this is old news - Mur Lafferty blogged about it back in December - but I only just found out about it.

Now, you all know how I've been talking big about making it as a writer. This looks like one heck of an opportunity. Should I take a shot at it?

The Cons:

  • I don't have anything ready to submit. Seriously. Sure, I'm now seriously working on finishing my NaNo novel by the end of the month, and I have four and a bit chapters of Slamdance done. But those are first drafts; technically they need at least three more drafts before they're ready for submission (thanks again, Mur and Jared A). Even if I go hell-for-leather I have no idea how long that'll take.

  • While March isn't an entirely busy month, we still have stuff we need to do, like renovating the front room (so we actually have some space) and the bathroom ceiling.

  • The submissions page states that "If things go well we might repeat the project later in the year." Better to get a decent submission in then than a rushed, shit one in now, right?

  • The site also states that Angry Robot are seeking "unagented authors". Is this a good thing? I don't know. Some say agents are vital; others, they're an optional extra.

  • I have no idea how big Angry Robot are. I don't think I've seen any of their books on local stores' shelves (not that said stores aren't having trouble right now).

The Pros:

  • I have no idea just how big an "if" the one in "If things go well..." is. This open-door month could turn out to be a once-only event. How often do opportunities like this occur?

  • Angry Robot's specialty is genre fiction, which is, of course, right up my alley (they've put out a heap of stuff I'd love to get my mitts on when we get back into the black). I'd love to have a book out with these guys. They're also pretty forward thinking, having embraced the ebook market (their products are DRM-free, another bonus) whilst still selling print versions.

Now the Panic's Out of My Head and On Paper:

I think I'll give it a miss. I'm simply not yet ready to submit anything, and I don't think forty days is enough time to make what I have ready.

But if any of you reading this have got something in the trunk that's either ready for submission or only needs a little more work, I hope you take a punt!