The following is taken from Penguin’s website and is fairly indicative of the main publishing houses’ attitude to new authors:
People frequently ask us how to go about getting published. Unfortunately, we are unable to accept any unsolicited manuscripts or synopses and cannot enter into correspondence about unpublished work. We can, however, offer the following advice on how to go about getting into print.
A great place to start is your local library where you’ll find a wealth of information on writers groups and plenty of books on writing and the publishing process. From our own list we recommend The Practice of Writing by David Lodge.
When you feel your work is ready for publishing you need to get a Literary Agent. Agents can objectively advise you on your work and will know the most suitable publisher to take it to, not to mention fighting for the best deal on your behalf. A comprehensive listing of UK literary agents can be found in the Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook, published annually by A & C Black.
Different markets demand a different approach, so we also offer specialist advice for aspiring Adult fiction and Children’s fiction authors.
If you would like an assessment of your work contact The Literary Consultancy. There is a charge for this service.
The Literary Consultancy
Free Word Centre
60 Farringdon Road
London EC1R 3GA
0207 7324 2563
A number of other websites who also offer great advice and writer’s resources:
Writers resource and rights marketplace
Provides listings, factsheets on publishing and getting published, plus book news
Handbook of Rhetorical Devices
Guidelines for and examples of rhetorical devices
The magazine for women who write. Advice and inspiration; news, reviews, interviews; competitions and grants
Reference search engine
Agency: Writersworld Limited
9 Manor Close
Enstone, United Kingdom
Home page: http://www.writersworld.co.uk
Reading fee: No