What to do when your book agent ghosts, rejects, or dumps you

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You finally got a literary agent to engage about your book proposal. Now they’re no longer getting back to you and things are stalled. How can you move forward? The first thing you need to accept is that, as friendly as agents may seem, they are transactional by nature, because they only get paid if … Continued

Could Scribe Media become a hub for nonfiction authors?

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Scribe Media — formerly known as Book-In-A-Box — has put videos from all its courses online and on YouTube for free. It’s got lots of free resources. That’s a bid to get writers to turn there first. Scribe has a decent chance to succeed at that — if it opens up its content offerings. As … Continued

Good and crappy reasons authors pick traditional, hybrid, or self-publishing models

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If you’re writing a book, there’s no perfect publishing model — there are always tradeoffs. Should you self-publish, pursue a traditional publisher, or approach a hybrid publishing model? Try these models on for size; see which one fits best. Traditional publishing Traditional publishers like Random House, Wiley, or HarperCollins — or smaller independent publishers — … Continued

Write a book proposal first, even if you’re self-publishing

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Unlike traditional publishers, alternate publishing methods — hybrid publishers and self-publishing — don’t require a book proposal. Write one anyway. Why should you put in all the extra work to write a proposal? Why not just write the book? Here are few good reasons: You’re going to need everything in the proposal anyway, from a … Continued

In response to the finest whines of nonfiction book authors

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Authors love to complain. (Well, everybody loves to complain, but the complaints of authors are more erudite and literate.) From my post as editor and coach, I get to hear it all. And I take your whines seriously, friends. So here’s a call-and-response that may help you cope. I cannot believe how much work it is to be an author. This is so hard. Art is hard. Being a smartass … Continued

What authors can learn from the IBPA hybrid publisher standards

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If you don’t need an advance, there are a lot of good reasons to consider a hybrid publisher — a publisher who will produce and distribute your book for a fee. But the self-publishing space is rife with con-men and amateurs. That’s one reason the Independent Book Publishers Association has published a 9-point set of … Continued

Is Seth Godin right about the future of publishing?

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With Amazon and ebooks swallowing so much of the book business, Seth Godin has set out a new vision for publishers. I don’t think they can follow his lead. As the book business shrinks, you’ll have to make your own way, through either luck or pay-for-play. Seth’s post, on the site of his publishing venture … Continued

Everything you need to know to write and publish a book

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Disruption in the publishing industry is confusing for authors.¬†Getting published in the traditional way is harder now, but there are a lot more ways to get a book done — and a lot more people who can help you. I’ve collected all my book wisdom into this post, with links to more detail. Potential authors … Continued