If you’re interested in going the traditional route (or traditional plus self-publishing – which is what I encourage people to do) then Tracy’s post is something you should read. I’m sure you can modify it for a fiction proposal. You’re a writer, after all!
For those who aren’t sure if they want to do self-publishing, Brook Warner of Shewrites gives us some reasons why you may want to go in that direction when thinking of publishing.
It’s really a matter of your goals, your time, and your money.
As I’ve said before, I encourage anyone who asks me about traditional publishing to do self-publishing while they are trying to pitch their story to an agent or publisher. It can only help if your story does well in the self-publishing realm, and the only thing you are going to do different when you self-publish (ebooks to start) is create a cover.
Either option will cause you hire an editor (and if you are serious about making your book a commercial success, I’d encourage you to find a professional.)
And to put an ebook on say, Amazon or Smashwords, you can do that using a properly formatted word doc. Smashwords has a free guide to help you through that process, and if you want to hire someone to do that for you, it’s probably only $100+ or – depending on the size and complexity of your book design.
Does this manifesto resonate with you?
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!
Here is an interesting piece for those who are interested in finding a book agent or maybe just thinking about it. Book Baby president, Brian Felsen, interviews Jody Rein (founder of Jody Rein Books) and Katharine Sands (a New York book agent)
From Clarie McKinney on Publishers Weekly website and my contact, Jennifer, on linkedin: Do You Know What a Book Publicist Does?.
Not that I’ll ever be able to afford a publicist, it’s still good information to know (just in case). Maybe you and I will need or meet one one day!
Why Established Authors Are Starting to Self-Publish. (from the Bookbaby Blog)
Hope you feel better now!