The article not only describes literary fiction (vs genre/commercial fiction), it also gives various reasons why literary publishers reject submissions. These reasons were more in-depth than usual, making them especially helpful.
I also found the article helpful as I try to figure out if my book qualifies as “literary” or “mainstream” or “genre.” It certainly doesn’t follow genre constraints, can’t be pigeonholed into one genre or another, and focuses on character and interior monologues as much as plot. Is it science fiction? fantasy? science fantasy? historical fiction? time travel? psychological? romance?
But it’s not “high-falutin'” with highbrow language or anything like that, either. I don’t think I’ll ever reach the level of “books only a college lit professor could love.”
I hope to eventually submit it to traditional small-press publishers (since I don’t like the terms of the big houses). But I need to know how to classify it, in cover letters to an agent or editor. It’s very confusing because I keep finding different definitions on different websites–and the websites themselves admit this!
I now have an eye-popping cover on all my versions of Tojet. The artwork is by Kimberly Steele. For years I haven’t changed the cover because of, well, fear of changing anything in my book: Revisions could make something go goofy. 😛 Here is the new cover:
Also, while working on the revisions, I had to update my pricing as well. The last time I did this, I could set my own royalty at a reasonable rate to keep the book prices as low as possible for the reader. But now, Lulu is making me set minimum prices higher than I wanted–and I discovered that retailers such as Amazon would then take away most of that royalty! If I want anything above 70 cents from an Amazon royalty, I’ll have to jack up the print prices so high that no one will buy it. >:(
So I don’t think I’ll be selling my print books through retailers anymore, except for any copies they may have in inventory. But now that I’ve made both of my books available as e-books in the versatile epub format, those should soon be available through retailers. Print versions, however, will have to go through Lulu.
I’m not sure what I’ll do with the cover of The Lighthouse. It’s a Lulu-provided cover, but I haven’t had the opportunity to get a better one. I could make one, but I don’t do full-color paintings, so I hesitate. Paying someone costs $$$. Public domain images just don’t look right for the book. So for now it’s staying as it is, unless I come up with a better one.