Getting Published or E-published/Publishing My Book


Hi, I have recently completed a teen/young adult fantasy novel, and I have attempted to present it to many publishers. Unfortunately, there have been issues. Firstly, I'm 14 years old, and many publishing houses do not want to work with underage authors. It seems only the self-publishing places are accepting. I don't know if this would be right for me. I would rather have other people do all the business of marketing it and stuff; I just want to get my book out there. I want to do it easily as well. I have money, and so I want to keep this away from my family until it is actually published. I'm sure I can pull it off on my own. Could you please direct me as to where to turn to now? Who can I find? I keep hoping I will get lucky and someone will simply pop up and be interested in what I have to offer, but that is not likely :). I'd be grateful if you could share some of what you might know on this...

Hi, Whits!

Sorry for the delay in responding to you. I was away from online for a few weeks doing some writing.

You say you're 14 and nobody wants to work with you. It's not so much that they don't WANT to, it's that a 14-year-old cannot legally sign a contract (including one for a self-publishing company.) Your parents/guardians would have to sign on your behalf in order for anyone to pay you money. You will really need for your parents have an attorney look at any agreement/contract presented to you to make sure it's legally binding on you and them.

Another reason publishers shy away from teens is the problem of your normal school/social schedule. Publishers are going to presume that much of your free time is eaten away by obligations you have no control over. Homework, sports practice, chores and even family duties are a few of the things that publishers realize you must do. So, to add to the load by contractual deadlines of when edits MUST be done (and you are liable to complete them by contract), isn't fair to either side.

Since publishers pay YOU money (you shouldn't ever pay them!) you would have to give the publisher assurances you can perform what they ask. But know it has been done! There are plenty of published 14 year olds out there. Take a look at this list:

But your family will have to be involved before anything happens to get the book on the shelf. I know it's probably not what you wanted to hear, but I'd rather be straight with you so you don't get disappointed later. If you still want to proceed, knowing all this, let me know and I'll be happy to get you started on the right path. :D


Getting Published or E-published

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Cathy Clamp


I'm happy to answer questions about any aspect of getting published through commercial publishers, ebook publishers and self-publishing I can help with writing a query letter and synopsis to an agent or editor. I can explain publishing terminology, acronyms and manuscript formatting. I can also assist with questions about verifying the credentials of agents/publishers and how to proceed once you've been accepted for publication.


I'm a USA Today bestselling author of urban fantasy and paranormal romance for Tor/Forge Books. Along with a co-author, I've published fifteen since 2003, and have contracts for four more books through 2011. I've also published short stories in multiple anthologies as well as regional and national magazines.

Romance Writers of America, Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, Western Outdoor Writers, Horror Writers of America.

Books/Anthologies: Tor/Forge Books, Western Reflections Publishing, BenBella Books, Running Press, Wild Child Publishing. Many more. Magazines: Rocky Mountain Game & Fish, Guns & Ammo, Fur-Fish-Game, many others.

My educational background is limited to real life experience of publishing novels commercially for the past five years.

Awards and Honors
USA Today bestseller, Waldenbooks Mass Market Paperback Top 20 bestseller, Nielsen BookScan Top 20 bestseller, Book Buyers Best Award for Paranormal, 2007, Romantic Times Best Werewolf Novel, 2006, Write Touch Readers Award, EVVY Best Historical Chronicle Award, The Lories Best Paranormal. Many others.

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