If your research stinks, your story sinks. And you thought I was joking about sinking.
The Marlowe Papers by Ros Barber – review
To avoid such embarrassing errors, do your research. Immerse yourself in the details of your setting. Two online research tools that will help you avoid mistakes:. I had been advised by a veteran author that my freelance income ought to be around three times what I made at my job before I considered going solo. He started listing everything I would have to pay for on my own. Insurance, retirement, all my benefits. I had always been careful to separate my writing and my office work, but during my off hours on business trips I might do some research.
You might not like this, but I recommend you keep it and spend your after-hours time writing your book.
How to publish a book on Amazon (and sell over 100,000 copies the SMART way)
Two reasons:. So, yes, you can have your cake and eat it too—without sacrificing time with family. You lose three hours per night for what, TV? How big a sacrifice is that for your writing dream? How badly do you want to become an author? Editors know from the first page whether your manuscript is publishable. First, the good stuff ought to be in the first two paragraphs. And if they see 15 adjustments they need to make on the first two pages, they know the cost of editing three or four hundred pages of the same would eat whatever profits they could hope for before even printing the book.
This section will show you how to become an author by revealing the options available. These best practices can vastly increase your likelihood of getting published. Your first step in trying to land a traditional publishing deal should be to land an agent —which can be just as difficult, as it should be.
There will seem a dichotomy here, because you are likely writing for altruistic reasons—you have a mission, a passion, a message, something burning inside that you must share with the world. Yet agents or publishers will appear to base their decisions solely on the bottom line. It simply means they must make a profit to stay in business—even faith-based publishers who are all about ministry. Most will not consider unsolicited manuscripts, though some will. Some will allow you to submit at writers conferences or through other clients of theirs.
Obviously, there are good agents and bad agents. How do you know whom you can trust? The credible agent welcomes scrutiny. So find reviews. Check with other clients. Once you compile a list of agents who seem to be a good fit, follow their submission guidelines.
If any ask for any sort of reading fee or other payment up front, eliminate them as candidates and do not respond. Most agents prefer submissions of any kind to be electronically submitted as an attachment, not as part of the body of your message. Avoid snail mail. Make your query letter crisp and short. The shorter while saying what you need to say the better. A query letter is just what its name implies—it queries the interest of the agent in your book idea.
So make it stimulating and intriguing. So it has to be fast and convincing. In a paragraph, tell what your nonfiction book is about and what you hope to accomplish with it. Or tell the basic premise of the plot of your novel. The synopsis would naturally go beyond the elevator pitch and tell what happens and how things turn out. Note: Almost any plot, when reduced to a one- or two-paragraph synopsis, sounds ridiculous. Help them envision how to pitch it to publishers, but be careful not to oversell.
You can say that your audiences have been enthusiastic or that beta readers have expressed excitement. Sell the agent on yourself. What qualifies you to write this book?
What else have you published? What kind of tribe have you built? Where can they read your blog? Some want only this.
10 Truths About Self-Publishing for Entrepreneurs With a Book Idea
Leave nothing out. For fiction, rough out the entire plot in a few pages. Three trusted colleagues have produced masterful works on how to write book proposals, so check out what they have to offer:. The competition is so fierce these days, I would lean toward a full proposal almost every time. The only instances when I might fire off a query would be if an incredible opportunity fell in my lap and I thought an agent could help me jump on it before I had time to craft a proposal. For instance, if a major celebrity wanted help with a book and chose you to write it, a fast letter to an agent might get a quick response.
Otherwise, take the time to put together a professional proposal that shows an agent you know how to work and can be thorough. Keep that in mind and be ready to get busy. But few can see their way through to the end. Use these submission guidelines:. Remember, the editor is on your side. Throw a private temper tantrum if you must, but then cool down and listen. Let them to do their job.
- 10 Steps To Self-Publishing Your Book.
- 01. Choose your format.
- 10 Truths About Self-Publishing for Entrepreneurs With a Book Idea!
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- Self-Publish: Moving from Idea to Product by Teri Lynne Underwood; Erin Ulrich | eBay.
- Where to self-publish an ebook?
Exhaust your efforts to traditionally publish before resorting to self-publishing. Even honest self-publishing executives will give you this advice. So nothing comes out of your pocket. With self-publishing, however, you pay for everything from design to editing. Too much copy on the front and back covers. Poor typeface and interior design. Lousy writing, editing, and proofreading—sometimes clearly nonexistent.
Publishing your own book is vastly different than it used to be. Your end product can now look much more professional, and your price per book is much more reasonable. Print-on-demand technology now allows for low-cost printing, so you can order as few as two or three books at a time for the same cost per book as you would pay if you were buying hundreds.
So, you no longer need to store countless copies in your garage or basement.
And self-published books look nicer these days too, because writers have demanded it. If you resort to this route, realize that you are the publisher now. You have to advertise, promote, and market your own book. Admittedly, selling enough self-published copies to actually net you more money than you would make selling more traditionally at a lower royalty rate is rare, but it happens.
Experts say as few as one percent of all published books can be accommodated by bookstores and that the rest must be sold through other channels like the Internet, direct mail, and by hand. Each of these elements will dramatically increase the professional look of your final product and, thus, your hope of selling more books. Do NOT skimp on them. More than , books are self-published every year in the United States alone.
So there are many companies to choose from. They might even give examples of a few titles of theirs that have sold into some stores or even made some bestseller list. That means your book will get no personal attention from a salesperson and no more emphasis than any of the tens of thousands of other titles on the list. That said, when you do need to self-publish, legitimate companies with proven track records are ready to assist you. Do your homework and go beyond an Internet search, which will likely turn up beautiful websites for countless companies putting their best foot forward.
So find previous customers and ask about their experience. You want a company who will answer every question straightforwardly and without hesitation. If you feel hard-sold, run. A litmus test question for the publisher: Ask if they would advise you to exhaust your efforts to traditionally publish first.
Related Self-Publish: Moving from Idea to Product
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