Monday, May 05, 2008

Age and Gender

Blog Readers: More on my blog in general in the comments section.

Ms. Rejector,


I am a sixteen year old female author. I have one full length novel (unpublished), under my belt, as well as one half of another one. My question is, respectfully, do age and gender play a major part when a manuscript is being taken into consideration by a publisher? I know it ultimately boils down to the quality of the work as to whether or not it is picked up, but in those first stages of consideration, is my age working against me?

Gender does not work against you unless you are a male writing a story about lesbians. That is the once case where it works against you.

Age does. Don't mention your age if you are below 21 years old. It's not lying; it's just not something you should mention before they see your novel and love it.

8 comments:

The Rejecter said...

So someone asked if I would post how I was doing with the ads after I put them up, and I said I would. I'm not entirely sure I'm supposed to, but here goes:

The first month I made almost exactly enough to pay my electricity bill, $60. Then things slowed down tremendously and since then I've made about $10.

Anonymous said...

Yeah people tend to click on them more when they first appear, and then not so much...

Stijn said...

Yeah, just mention it when they want you to sign a contract. That's the time to mention it.

Deb said...

What are you advising this writer to do? Not mention her age 'til it comes to the contract she's not legally able to sign?

Steve Malley said...

First contact is (or maybe should be) all about the manuscript. I didn't mention my own age, occupation, personal appearance or nationality in my queries. I let that all that stuff wait until there was interest in the work itself.

Once you get to that first getting-to-know-you phone call, *that's* when personal details will naturally come up.

And by that time, the agent likes your work already, or they wouldn't be calling...

Belvoir said...

Hm. I'm a gay man, and have written short stories where a lesbian is the protagonist..

Do you mean straight men writing prurient, racy stories about lesbians? I hope so..

Chumplet said...

I know a very good published author who writes great M/M fiction. She's a lovely heterosexual married lady with children.

Kristin said...

Don't mention your age if you are over 21 either! Who puts age in a query? Unless that is somehow significant to the book you are pitching...