Four Ways to Romance the Publisher!

Romance the EditorSo many cool things happen when an author sends me a submission. First, I get excited (and even more excited when that author followed the submission guidelines). As I read a well-edited and well-written submission the flutters inside start to buzz, some for the wonderful concept and story unfolding on my screen, and a few of those flutters because I can see how far that author’s career can go. After those first 50 pages hook me and I ask for the full manuscript, I actually wait with bated breath, eager to learn what happens next for those wonderful, multi-dimensional and exciting characters.

You see, I love to be wooed. Here are four ways to romance the publisher.

CandyDon’t send me candy, I’m on a diet. Send me your passion! A book with a few issues but a lot of author passion is far more promising than a perfectly written book by an author unwilling to push that book all the way. If I sense that the author wants to be seen and heard, loves what they are doing and is excited to embark on the query journey, I am very likely to respond, even if it’s a negative I’ll go the extra mile to explain what’s lacking in the letter or manuscript over sending the form rejection. I’m a person in a creative industry, not a machine randomly pushing the yes or no button. I don’t bite.

Over excitedDon’t write me an over-enthusiastic query with flowery language and teasing innuendo, because I can see right through that. Be honest, and please write your query letter with as much skill and crafting as you wrote your book. Nothing is more frustrating than seeing one cold, overly-flamboyant voice in the letter and another completely different voice (better or worse) in the first fifty pages. The recipient of your query would like to know who you are as well as what your book is about. Do that with balance and skill.

first 50Don’t edit ONLY your first fifty! Please be prepared. Too many times I see a wonderful query and first fifty pages and request the full manuscript, only to discover that the author didn’t bother to edit or have an editor work on page 51 to the end. Woo me with pride in your work! Romance me with your attention and commitment to quality! What you send tells me a lot about you, it’s like a dating profile. “I’m single (looking for a publisher), tall (over 65,000 words), exciting (with a great story), who enjoys long walks on the beach (understands the romance genre) and long conversations (and uses my head).” No one wants to date a person who only goes half-way and has no pride in their appearance.

CircusDon’t take me to the circus with ridiculous, cryptic information I have to decode. I’m too busy. I can understand keeping your twisted ending from your prospective readers, but I’m not the one to keep secrets from. The synopsis in your query letter must tell me how the story ends. It’s part of how you make me fall in love with you, the writer and creative thinker, so don’t hold back. Be sure your synopsis is well written, smooth, tells the story and pulls me in.

ROMANCE ME with a great story and I’ll be yours forever! Make me fall in love with not only your story, characters and talent, but also your potential and we’ll go far together. Promise me excitement and drama and it’ll be a marriage made in publishing heaven. The key to romancing a publisher is something most querying authors never think about … I’m not only looking for a great book for my Imprint, I’m looking for a great relationship. We both want the same things, we speak the same language … author success. We could grow old together! Make each other smile and cry and laugh and sigh.

Assent Publishing’s Breathless Books Imprint is accepting submissions! AND here’s one of the ways we can both fall in love! We’re accepting “GREAT ROMANCE” Contest submission until April 30. There’s still time to sweep me off my feet!



  • “GREAT ROMANCE” Contest submissions accepted from January 15, 2013 through midnight (U.S. Eastern Time), April 30, 2013
  • All subgenres of romance accepted (EXCEPT erotica)
  • Manuscript must be complete
  • Word counts accepted – 65,000 to 100,000 word – OR a novella series of at least 2 novellas, 40,000 words each
  • You must note “2013 GREAT ROMANCE Contest” and book title in subject line of submission email to be eligible
  • One “GREAT ROMANCE” contest submission per author
  • Follow ALL Breathless Books Imprint Submission Guidelines
  • All submissions will be judged by Assent Publishing Imprint Editors and Acquisitions Editors

“GREAT ROMANCE” Grand Prize Winner will receive:

  • Assent Publishing Contract including all benefits offered through Assent Publishing – professional editing, professional cover design, print and ebook formatting, distribution, intense marketing training through the Assent Academy, and the unparalleled Assent Publishing commitment to author success
  • A GREAT ROMANCE GRAND PRIZE WINNER Promotional Announcement Blitz promoting the winner and their book ($2,000 value)
  • 50 FREE print copies of their book
  • 10 Months (twenty, 2 hour sessions) of One-on-One Author Marketing Coaching with Author Success Coach, Deborah Riley-Magnus ($1,000 value)
  • An Opportunity to Speak as the Romance Expert in their own Assent Publishing GREAT ROMANCE GRAND PRIZE WINNER blog for one full year
  • A One Year General Membership to the Romance Writers of America ($95 value)
  • A Kindel Fire

“GREAT ROMANCE” Top 5 Finalist Submissions will receive:

  • Assent Publishing Contract including all benefits offered through Assent Publishing – professional editing, professional cover design, print and ebook formatting, distribution, intense marketing training through the Assent Academy, and the unparalleled Assent Publishing commitment to author success
  • GREAT ROMANCE WINNER Promotional announcements for the author and their book ($200 value)

Your contest submission can be Contemporary Romance, Young Adult Romance, Historical Romance, Paranormal Romance, Futuristic Romance or Humorous Romance. (Erotic Romance submissions are not accepted and will be disqualified.)

Assent Publishing’s Breathless Books Imprint is currently accepting Romance submissions in addition to contest entries. Send your submissions and “GREAT ROMANCE” contest entries to . We can’t wait to be amazed and fall in love!

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