Angry Robot - anybody else?

Discussion in 'Writing' started by Taramoc, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. Taramoc

    Taramoc Author and Game Designer

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    Hi all,
    As a short break on my ongoing battle against my novel's query letter, I just submitted my novel for the Angry Robot open door 2012 (luckily they don't require one, just a synopsis) and I was curious if anybody else in the forum did.

    Taramoc
     
  2. N. E. White

    N. E. White tmso Staff Member

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    I have not submitted anything, but I'm considering it for next year. Of course, that's what I said last year, so who knows. :eek:

    Good luck, Taramoc. :)
     
  3. RedMage

    RedMage There is no tomorrow

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    When I first learned about the open door a couple months ago I was going to pass it up and wait for next year as I did not think I could have my manuscript ready in time. Then I finished it yesterday. (yay!) And then, about an hour ago, I discovered that I had not edited the second chapter after having it critiqued. :eek:

    I may still be able to, if I can get this edit done in time...

    And a 2-3 page synopsis. Maybe I can work on that one while at work this week? ;)
     
  4. Cirias

    Cirias Wirt's Fourth Leg

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    If they have this again next year I'm definitely going to submit something. Hopefully I should have it ready by then...
     
  5. Wilson Geiger

    Wilson Geiger Greymane

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    I found out about it too late, hopefully next year!
     
  6. Triceratops

    Triceratops Browser

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    Do they take YA distopian and SF? I was going to submit to their Strange Chemistry imprint. Hmm...now I'm wondering if THAT is the YA imprint. In any event, I'll have to contact my agent first to see if she''s sent something their way so I don't cause a head-on collision.

    chris
     
  7. Taramoc

    Taramoc Author and Game Designer

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    Last year they accepted EVERYTHING (as long as it was some type of SFF), but this year only classic fantasy, so I'd say no to dystopian YA or SF. They do provide a link to Strange Chemistry in case you want to submit there, but I suspect it's not part of the Open Doors month.
     
  8. RedMage

    RedMage There is no tomorrow

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    Yes, actually, they are. For YA submissions, go here.

    They have one site for their for their adult imprint and another for their YA imprint. And, yeah, Strange Chemistry (YA imprint) is part of the Open Door Month. Actually, the pages are all but identical and have almost the same rules. (At least, they did when I first looked at them and that was a few months back. Maybe things have changed? Not sure, I was just getting the link.)
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2012
  9. Susan Boulton

    Susan Boulton Edited for submission

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  10. Taramoc

    Taramoc Author and Game Designer

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    What do you mean Batman Fanfic is not classic fantasy! It doesn't come more classic than Batman as characters go, and it's definitively fantastic. Last time I checked there are no green haired, white faced monsters killing people in the real world.

    Just kidding... Thanks for the link, Holbrook. And thanks for the Good Luck, tmso. I'll post when I get some kind of reply from them.

    Taramoc
     
  11. Tim Marquitz

    Tim Marquitz Registered User

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    Thanks for this. It was enlightening to hear they've already begun sending rejections (if only for Batman fanfic) and that AR only got 50 subs the first day. It makes it sound like it might not take a year to get a response. Sweet.
     
  12. Triceratops

    Triceratops Browser

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    Uhg. I'll let my agent sort it out. The sub box requires that you do not check the agent box in the affirmative--this period may be for un-agented subs only, and that an agent must avoid that box, or go around it somehow. She'll know what to do.

    chris
     
  13. Susan Boulton

    Susan Boulton Edited for submission

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    I think the open door is for unagented writers only. Angry Robot is I believe still open in the normal manner for agents with regards to Epic Fantasy.
     
  14. Triceratops

    Triceratops Browser

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    Thank you for clearing that up.

    chris
     
  15. Taramoc

    Taramoc Author and Game Designer

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    Just got today my rejection from Angry Robot. Not unexpected, I have to say, since my word total was way above their suggested guidelines. I'm a bit surprised that it took them almost five months, though.

    What left me more baffled is these two lines at the bottom of the email:

    "Coming soon: Professional editing services from Angry Robot. Register your interest here: *link to their website*"

    What should I read into this blatant advertisement? Does it undermine Angry Robot's credibility as a publisher? Are they just trying to make a few more bucks (and there's nothing wrong with it)?

    I know they published a few novels using the Open Door policy last year, so I'm pretty sure it's not just a scam to get new authors to sign up (also, they would have the service ready to go if it was the case), but it did make me bulk a bit.

    Taramoc
     
  16. N. E. White

    N. E. White tmso Staff Member

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    Five months? I would have re-written my beast twice in that amount of time. Well, no one said publishing the traditional way was fast.

    That is weird about the editing services. I think they should have maybe made an announcement on their website, rather than include it in a rejection letter. That does seem scam-like, or, at the very best, in poor taste.
     
  17. PeteMC

    PeteMC @PeteMC666

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    Real publishing does seem to take forever for anything to happen. Snowbooks took eleven months to reject my full... (and they wonder why we laugh when they say "don't submit it to anyone else while we're looking at it"!).
     
  18. Taramoc

    Taramoc Author and Game Designer

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    I'm fully aware that real publishing takes forever. What I actually meant is that I thought it would take a lot less, since my word count was so much higher (a quick look at my first page with the word count, and here goes the rejection email).

    I wonder if they actually considered it for a bit (just my ego clutching at straws here :) ).

    I'm still curious to know what the fine folks with publishing knowledge in this forum thinks of the editing service advertisement in the rejection email, though.

    Taramoc
     
  19. KatG

    KatG The Bony Hand of Death Staff Member

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    Of course they considered it. That was the whole point of the exercise. If they had found they liked it enough, they'd have said, do you think you could cut it down. Given that these shots of theirs produce a lot of submissions, five months, instead of the better three, is not surprising.

    As for the editing services, they are looking at just offering copyediting and proofreading services -- services which they themselves use freelancers for. It would essentially be them being a broker for the freelance copyeditors and proofreaders they work with, who are professionals, plus an e-book production service to help draw customers away from Amazon and chip at their dominance (not entirely a bad thing,) which would presumably involve tech people who do e-books for Angry Robot and who know all the formatting and will do all the e-book format proofreading that makes e-books still kind of laborious (and those folks may also be freelancers or staff.)

    Developmental editing, line editing, etc. they aren't doing. So essentially, it's a potential tech division, similar to what a printing company might also offer in services. That could be fine as far as it goes, as long as it's clear what services you are getting and what the prices will be. But these things are uneasy in that very new ventures for publishing are being considered, and author groups like SFWA are vetting them very carefully -- Harlequin ran afoul of that a few years back on self-pub services offered through another company with too many promises. Everything is in flux, so experiments are going on. How well they are run is an issue. Angry Robot is at least making it clear in their website page that this idea has nothing to do with publication in Angry Robot.

    It was inappropriate, however, for Angry Robot to ask an open submission contest entrant for publication with them to then fill out the survey form on having these services available for self-publishing. They should not be doing that. In fact the whole idea should be given a different name and set up as a project idea separately. Offering self-pub services including/or editing services to authors being rejected for publication is not a smart business practice. If you've rejected the idea of partnering with an author and investing in his or her work, even on a "send us another project sometime and we might like it better" basis, that is the end of the matter. The publisher then soliciting something or asking the rejected author to help with market research is not professional behavior.

    So Angry Robot seems by all accounts to be a good publisher, even after it was sold off by Harper to its publisher Gascoigne, and adept at using the Internet for marketing. And they are expanding. But this seems to be a misstep in dealing with authors, albeit moderately minor. It could get them yelled at by the influential groups in SFFH, but may not unless there are a number of complaints. Hopefully they are not doing it on a regular basis.
     
  20. Taramoc

    Taramoc Author and Game Designer

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    Thanks Kat,
    I thought it wasn't completely kosher what they did.

    Just to clarify, what I meant by "consider" wasn't that they didn't even look at it, but maybe it made a short list before being rejected (and hence taking a bit longer). Like I said, my ego talking since I have no bases for knowing that, and as you pointed out, five months is not out of this world given the amount of submission they must get.

    Taramoc