Is there an age limit on writing and publishing? I think it’s more a matter of convention. Of tradition. Most writers/authors are in their twenties to fifties during their biggest ‘publishing’ careers. In my opinion this si due to the ‘old boy’ network of the big seven publishers and the strangle hold they had on the industry until lately.
When I was first starting out writing, I knew of an older lady in her sixties writing her first book and most of the big publishers rejected her because of her age. (this was quite a while ago.) I guess their thought was that since she was elderly (she was very spry) they wouldn’t get many books out of her and therefore not a good investment. And as with any other industry, maybe even more here, the bottom line is the money. How much will a book or author make for the company?
For the most part, I think that younger writers just haven’t had the time to learn their craft. Not saying that there aren’t talented young people out there, just the majority are not good enough writers to actually get published. This was I’m sure the thought process of the executives in the big publishing houses.
I would like to see more manuscripts written my both young and old. Young because they have a new, fresh perspective on the world and writing. Older because they have lived and have the experience to put into their writing. So for us at Seventh Wave Books, (www.seventhwavebooks.com) there is no age limit. We judge the work, not the writer. So if you or someone that you know is looking for a publisher, give us a shot. Even if this is your first time trying to get published. After all, we all started with the first manuscript!
Angela Abderhalden is the author of the Mel Addison Mystery Series and Acquiring Editor for Seventh Wave Books, LLC