This was a problem posed to me this week, and I have thought and thunked about it - but not can't see a resolution, so am posting it here for input.
A new member of the Writing Group I "run/lead" at the Library turned up and told me she had a novel she had written that she wanted published. She didn't want to instruct an agent, and no publisher she could find in the Authors and Agent's Year book listed in the genre her novel fel into would accept unsolicited submissions - so what next?
Well I thought about this, and thought - there has got to be some way around this - except I can't see how. Nobody does something for nothing she rightly pointed out, but what is in that proposition for a publisher? It might be the novel of the century, but yet again it might need hefty editing and they would not necessarily want to get involved. The agent (who I loathe to actually give any credit to their existence for, but accept in this instance) might attract commission, but they also filter out those manuscripts which might not necessarily make the grade - even if their authors feel so.
The novel isn't suitable for grant aid, and it wouldn't attract funding for a magazine, and the lady didn't want to go down the route of writing articles - self-publishing is out of the question because of the vanity aspect. So what is left? Competitions seem a no go, or an unwilling venture to pursue..
I was asked how I got my work out there - well I seem to have a talent for self-marketing - but on further questioning, I didn't feel my contacts were there to be shared or discussed. I wouldn't want to upset my very kind connections (and patient I should say .... the time they have had to wait for some of my work has been above and beyond the patience of some).
Internet research was dismissed, and also cold-calling - I was very proud of myself at this stage - I would have usually offered to take on the problem - but didn't !! ~ this after all was a creative writing course, not marketing one - my EI course is teaching me well.
I am now truly stumped... what else is there?