Sunday, July 1, 2012

Seven laws of Submission


In the past, the Lawrence /// Gibson publishing collective posted two different videos for out attitude towards the process of submission. The first, was of a live performance of a particularly punk band’s rendition, nah extradition, of ‘Submission’. The second was a video compilation of the top ten mixed martial arts submissions. The meaning was clear, especially for those with the vigour to bypass our silly waivers and get in touch directly, indirectly or through various types of magic.

But as of today we now have an official submission ingredients list:



(i) We need two or three rejection letters from other New Zealand publishers. The more entertaining the better, particularly if there is some follow up correspondence.

Why this? Well, we’re not interested in doing other publishers jobs for them. There are university and Creative New Zealand subsidised publishers out there to release your poetry, novel or non-fiction. Try them first.

(ii) Make sure the bloody thing is funny and near it’s final form. I know we’re supposed to edit the thing too but do you really want our PC mitts telling you that you’re a flaming misogynist and we’d prefer less violence in the romance scenes? No, you don’t want that. So make sure that you’re prepared to defend the book and not have your words get all warped by our sensibilities.

(iii) Be in Wellington. Helps a lot. We’re DIY and you will get paper cuts at the least, a finger chopped off in an industrial accident at worst. Ask Rebel Press. They know.

(iv) We’re quite happy to read e-copy. Format it nicely for us, maybe send us some chocolate to grease up our lipid cells. And then we can have a coffee and we will look you in the eye and ask why you write. At this point you have to cleverly insert a reference to Gerard Murnane’s Barley Patch or to some Rilke poem.

(v) We also insist that you are familiar with some of our other works. As we generally publish one Meros book to match one of our other books it’d be good to know what his schtick is and perhaps what Dewey or Gnanalingam have been up to, too. Going through those guys is a good way to get noticed by US.

(vi) No fly by night, heart-breakers. This applies as equally to Australians as it does to those Atlantic-siders.

(vii) Use big words and big concepts and if you self-censor then we’ll tell you so. That is, if you’re going to call a ‘spade’ anything, then make sure you’ve checked it out at EtymOnline and aren’t mistranslating the original: To call a spade a spade "use blunt language" (1540s) translates a Greek proverb (known to Lucian), ten skaphen skaphen legein "to call a bowl a bowl," but Erasmus mistook Gk. skaphe "trough, bowl" for a derivative of the stem of skaptein "to dig," and the mistake has stuck.

We put all of our profit back into our books. You can do what you want with your profit if you sell enough to make any.