Writing is one of those professions where the supply is way, way greater than the demand. That means there's only room for a certain number of authors to have their books published other than vanity publishing, paying to have it done. All that means is that you have to work at your craft until you're the one out of a hundred who gets their novel published by a legitimate publishing house.
I began writing in 1990 and almost immediately fell prey to a scam artist masquerading as an "agent". That one mistake, not doing the research necessary to find a decent agent, cost me probably ten years of not seeing my work published. I almost gave up when the scam was revealed, but then persisted, knowing I did good work, but now I had to overcome the onus of having been mixed up with crooks and sham publishing houses.
In essence, I started all over, just about the time E-books, sometimes called electronic or digital publishing came along. I kept writing and posted a couple of my novels on the internet where they were seen by an E-book publisher and the rest, as they say, is history.
Within a few years I became an icon of the E-book industry and this year, after winning the Dream Realm Award for best science fiction novel of the year, found that I have won every major award offered by the e-book industry.
In the meantime, my novels were slowly finding their way into print as trade paperbacks, borne on my reputation as an e-book author. Now, with most of them in print and with Savage Survival being published in hard cover I feel as if I have finally arrived. And if that wasn't enough proof for me, I was asked to collaborate on a new novel with Travis S. Taylor, a noted scientist and best selling science fiction author for Baen Books. This book, Human By choice, will be published in July of 2008.
But I repeat: none of this came about through any secret. I worked and kept working. I tried and kept trying to make my work better. I didn't give up in the face of adversity. All this can be found in my autobiography which is a story in itself. Fans began asking about my life. I published some excerpts of it on my web site and a publisher found it interesting enough to ask me to turn it into a book. It has been published as an E-book under the title Darrell Bain's World Of Books and will come out in print in 2008 under the same title.
Secrets? There aren't any secrets. Get to work. Keep writing. Study your craft. Don't give up. And don't waste your time trying to find a secret to getting published. There isn't one.
Darrell Bain is the author of SAVAGE SURVIVAL (Twilight Times Books, Sept. '07). You can visit his website at www.darrellbain.com.