Ah, To Be 25 And Have A Plan. Or To Just Have A Plan.

September 1st, 2005 · 1 Comment
by Booksquare

Before we begin, we must say something of rather major importance: ouch. Jason Pinter is 25. Is that even legal drinking age? Driving age? Shouldn’t he be off backpacking through mountains or finding himself or something? Or has that golden age passed? We feel so out of touch sometimes.

That being said, he knows what he likes:

But when I turned the first page, all of a sudden it was four hours later, I’d forgotten about lunch, finished the book, and was yelling to anyone within shouting distance that it was the best novel I’d ever read on submission. We bought it two weeks later.

And while Pinter plays the five-page rule, he also looks at the big picture:

I look at everything that crosses my desk, but can usually tell within five pages whether something is right for me. When I started at Warner my boss told me that when you buy a book, you have to enjoy it enough to be able to read it half a dozen times throughout the editorial process. I keep that in mind, because to really go after a book you can’t just like it, you have to absolutely love it. The editor is always a book’s biggest advocate, and if they’re only lukewarm about a project they’ll have a tough time getting anyone else interested.

And finally, we have the useful submission advice:

Always put your best foot forward. When you submit a book, you’re interviewing against hundreds of other candidates, and you usually have just one shot to make a great impression. If you’ve written a novel, polish that sucker until it shines. Then polish it again. You wouldn’t show up for a first date and say, “I know I smell like a used diaper, but if you like me enough I promise I’ll shower.”

File Under: Publishers and Editors

1 response so far ↓

  • Bernita // Sep 1, 2005 at 10:34 am

    Just – thank you.
    It surprises me a little to find, in the space of two days, an agent and an editor who do not like to look at fiction involving terrorism,irregardless of its possible commercial value, and I am not quite sure how to interpret that fact.