An Interview With Editor Amanda Barnett
Please welcome to our blog Amanda Barnett, Senior Editor of the Fantasy Line at The Wild Rose Press. She is here to give our readers a new perspective from the other side. Amanda, please tell our readers a little bit about you, such as why did you become an editor?
Amanda– I wanted to become an editor to help others. I have worked in the publishing business since 2000, and I have seen so many writers who want to succeed but couldn’t for various reasons. By being an editor, I can help them with the fundamentals of writing, and give them an insight into what editors are looking for. In some small way, I try to help them achieve their dream.
Nancy- Please tell our readers about the publisher you represent.
Amanda– I work for the Wild Rose Press. This is a company that has more than proved its belief in helping authors whether they have been published before or not. Rhonda Penders and RJ Barrett started this company in 2006 on a belief they could help change the publishing world by getting authors who were good in their craft but unable to be noticed by bigger publishing houses out to the world of publishing. That belief and dream turned into what authors see today. A company totally oriented on helping others. I feel that working for this company is an answer to my prayer, and I am totally excited to say that after almost ten years with The Wild Rose Press, I cannot think of a place I’d rather work.
Nancy- Describe the genre of the most recent release, and is it the only genre you represent?
Amanda– We have so many different genres on Fantasy. Anything from Sci-fi, to time-travels, dragons, ghosts, Fae warriors, Dragon Knights, and Haunted salons, witches, anything that your imagination can come up with usually finds a place with Fantasy, unless it is a bit too dark and that goes to our sister line, Black. All of these genres have already been released or will be in the next month or so.
Nancy- What is your weekly routine like?
Amanda– As the senior on Fantasy, my week is spent in reviewing and assigning queries to our awesome editors on our line. I look over request for contracts, fill out contracts, and evaluate and line edit the authors who work directly under me. I also answer all emails that come to me, and I take part in doing our weekly chat when it is my turn. It takes time, but is extremely rewarding!
Nancy- Who first introduced you to the love of reading?
Amanda– I’m not sure who introduced me to my love of reading, but I truly can’t remember a time I didn’t devour books. I know I was reading books when I was in the first grade to my baby sister. Since then if I had a dollar for every book I’ve read and reread, I could retire. I don’t know, reading is for me a release, and by being able to read new authors work and help them is a plus.
Nancy- For authors or prospective authors: what influences your decision to read a submission: the query letter, synopsis, the plot, etc.
Amanda– One of the things I look at when it comes to a query is the letter itself. Has the author expressed themselves in a way that allows me to see the bones of their book and the genre they are writing. Are there any spelling mistakes. I know mistakes happen, but that bugs me. I also look at the synopsis, but for me it is not as important as the completed book. We all know that a book can change while it is being written. One of the reasons I prefer to read the book and make a decision on the writing, the plot, and the mechanics before I decide to go beyond and possibly offer a contract.
Nancy- What is the biggest no no you see in submissions that makes you reject them?
Amanda– A badly spelled query letter, a book that is riddled with spelling errors, inconsistent plots, and if the point of view is off. I am a stickler for correct point of view. I also will not take on a manuscript if there is a lot of head hopping. What I will do is clue the author into what I have found, try to explain how to fix it, and if I am truly in love with the book, I will ask them to revise and resubmit to me directly.
Nancy- What do you see ahead in your career?
Amanda– If the Lord wills it, I see myself editing and continuing to love working for the Wild Rose Press.
Nancy- Will you share some encouraging words for authors still struggling for that first contract?
Amanda– Do not give up. Yes, I know that rejections are horrid, yet if you truly are a writer at heart, you can’t give up. Find out why you may not have a contract. Work to fix the problems, and move on to writing the next book. Get in a critique group, one that is of long term and has knowledgeable and published authors already as members. The one thing I know is if you give up you can never experience the overwhelming thrill of having that first book out there. And who knows, it could just be around the corner!
Nancy- How can our readers find your submission guidelines?
Amanda– Submission guidelines for fantasy can be found HERE
More About Amanda
Amanda Barnett loves to read and to edit. She has been in the publishing world in one capacity or other for almost two decades. Presently she enjoys being a senor editor at The Wild Rose Press on the Fantasy Line. She loves working with authors and helping them to fine-tune their work. Her joy comes when she too sees the finished product of a writers heart, and she loves to help them achieve their dreams.