Once upon a time there was a writer who wrote a children’s novel. She loved it; it was her creature. So she began to look for a literary agent around the world, but she knocked against walls and slammed doors. She felt frustrated, but she didn’t give up. Eventually she chanced upon an unknown agent, who accepted to represent her and her work. He became one of the most famous literary agents of the world, and she became richer than Her Majesty the Queen. And they lived happily ever after.
Is this a fairy tale? A myth? Yes and no. In short, this is J.K. Rowling’s story. She is not the one and only, I can mention other examples about books and authors rejected and snubbed, until someone with a more developed sight and nose discovered them for mutual satisfaction (not only money…).
Somebody told me that it’s essential to understand what the market wants. Well, I said between me and me: I will do a market research. The outcomes:
- Publishing houses don’t look for sci-fi, vampires and zombies (market saturation), classic fantasy (elves, dwarves and so on).
- Publishing houses are very cautious about saga, because it happens that the writer doesn’t finish the series (I must underline that Mrs. Rowling wrote no less than SEVEN books).
- Publishing houses look for fresh plots, if possible with a strong moral, but neither pedantic nor boring.
- My novel is classified as “fantasy novel” because of dragons. But it’s reductive, and this definition does not suit my work at all. Mine is more an adventure novel with dragons, set in a nowadays background. The main characters use smartphones, tablets and the web for their searches.
- My saga is almost complete: two books are already published in Italy, and I’m finishing the third and last one.
- The novel is lively. It has a crystal clear moral, but it’s not boring; there’s neither rough stuff, nor wars and violence. It exhorts to protect planet Earth, and makes the readers acquainted with archaeology and ancient civilizations in a funny and interesting way.
Then, why is it so difficult to find a trustworthy literary agent who dares to bet on my work? My children’s book, finalist of Bancarellino award 2012, is well written, and young readers showed they like it. I got wonderful selling results in Italy, good reviews, and several amusing book signings in junior high schools. “Il Sigillo del drago” is perfect for becoming a movie. Everyone loves dragons, and what about the amazing backgrounds of the novel? (Giza, Stonehenge, Luxor).So why is it unlikely to find anybody who wants to run the risk? Too much fuffa (junk), or better, fifty shadows of fuffa (junk), wandering about? I don’t konw. Am I angry? Not at all. I’am disappointed, very disappointed.