When to give up and when to not give up, and what to do if you don’t

Like so many authors, I have made a number of efforts to have my work picked up by mainstream paying publishers.  Like most people who find it necessary to be flexible, I have done a bunch of contract writing for projects other than just novels.  It was not what I had really intended to have happen, but it did. 

Well, in truth I seem to have been wrong in many of my predictions about my own life, which is unfortunate since I was blessed with having actually had some goals and plans for my adult life.  I left some ‘wiggle room’ but had not intended to be confronted by some of the challenges I have faced.

One of the recent challenges is this:  I wrote a novel and have submitted it to over 40 publishers.  I have also sent it out to a few agents.  Searching for an agent is frustrating, but what I heard is that agents get people deals with big mainstream publishing companies and help the author not just get ruthlessly exploited by a famous respectable company instead of being exploited by a small company or by not even being able to be exploited.  [Retro style Silicon Valley girl tone] “That’s like how bad the industry really is.”

A corporation that works in publishing without a great reputation has offered me an exploitative contract.  I’m not sure whether or not to just take my marbles and go home, and decide whether to re-edit the novel or to just throw it out in the trash like the consequences of an old hobby…When I wrote it people probably just didn’t think of me, or thought I was avoiding getting a job or just making a mistake because I thought I was actually acting self-employed by writing a novel that I intended to earn money from selling even though I actually enjoyed the work of writing it. 

Those are pretty much the options.  I think a lot of artists and other professionals would understand the basic situation.  Do I need to go ahead and try something that may work for me or might make me fail but with the additional experience of having made another effort to be effective?  Should I just give up on that novel and leave it at that?  Do I just need to edit and and then continue to try to get a good agent and/or a fair contract from some publishing company that doesn’t have an agent?  This is the situation.

If you like to try things and have a Kindle or don’t mind a wild rough copy, you can get a copy of this novel as it is now.  Here’s how:  http://www.amazon.com/An-Adventure-in-Indianapolis-ebook/dp/B001F0QG7U

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