If you want to go the traditional publishing route, you have to know how the write a dynamite query letter. The below link from Bookbaby and Chris Robley will give you some pointers. I also would add mentioning your platform in your letter. That’s a big thing that agents and publishers are interested in – your followers, which equal your sales potential.
In addition, I would suggest you go the self-publishing route at the same time. This used to be a big no-no, but the list is growing every year of authors who self-published first and did so well that they attracted the attention of one of the big 5 (? – is that the correct number) publishers. And it a one way to build that platform that publishers like to see.
It also helps curb that itch to see your stuff in print (or on an ereader or both!) and frees up your energy to go onto your next masterpiece!
This post by Randall Wood explains a lot when it comes to where to publish and why. And if he is correct ( haven’t read this any place else so I’m a wee-bit skeptical), he also explains why their additional distribution channels do little to actually sell more of your books. I don’t know where he got his figures from, but they are very interesting.
The only thing I would add is, I would print in one additional place – from a brick and mortar printer of your choice. Most do POD nowadays.
Many Indie books stores do take self-published books (usually at a 40% discount) but since Createspace takes 50-55% anyway (I heard it was 50% if you published through createspace and 55% if you printed it yourself and you sell it on Amazon yourself), you’re way ahead in the profit category if the indie bookstore takes a book you had printed yourself.
Here is a post on Shewrites by Brooke Warner that lays out the various publishing options people have. I think it helps clear up some of the self-publishing confusion out there so I wanted to share it.
Keep in mind that places like createspace and ingram/lightening source are book printers (and distributors). You can also have a book printed at a brick and mortar printer near you. Most printers these days do print on demand (POD), meaning you can have one or one thousand books printed. The nice thing about brick and mortar printers is that the more you print (in one print run) the less it costs. I know for createspace, the printing cost is the same no matter how many books you have printed. I personally like to use brick and mortar printers because I like to see the books before they are sent out (to make sure the quality is what I want) and so I can sign the books and add a note asking for a review. I also like to work locally if I can – spread the love, so to speak. I may, as some point, also go with createspace but for now, I put my books on Amazon myself.
It is the second (and I would guess, annual) IndieReCon Feb 25 – 27, starting at 10 a.m. EST. If you are an self-published author or you’re looking to go that route, I would recommend tuning in – besides, it’s Free! Here is a description from their website:
What is it? IndieReCon is a FREE, ONLINE conference designed to help any writer or author who is curious about the ins and outs of Indie publishing. Are you curious about Indie publishing, but don’t know where to start? Or are you already a published Indie author looking to boost your sales or expand your reach?
They have lots of good speakers (Berry Eisler, JA Konrath, Rachel Aaron, Chelsea Fine and Chelsea Cameron…) and giveaways including a Grandprize giveaway for your ebook submission. Here is the schedule if you want to check it out. And the link for the home page: http://www.indierecon.org/
My last post was on the back of the book. This one is on the very important front cover.
Some very good advice from Dave Bricker about designing book covers. Things to think about when you want to do it yourself, or when you are evaluating what your hired designer has done for you.
Note: If you hire a designer, make sure they get a synopsis of your book. Most don’t have time to read a whole book, but they should have a good idea of what’s going on in your story so they can design around it.
August Wainwright did all of us indie writers a big favor by putting together this list, so I am sharing it with you. Some I recognize, some are new to me, which I like. I also like that he’s distinguished them by category. Nice! Thanks August!