How to Publish a Book

If you have a flair for writing and think that you can keep the audience enthralled with your work, consider writing as a profession. If your writings enchant even a handful of friends, you can definitely create a mark for yourself, considering the rubbish work of writers whose books adorn the shelves at most public places and in return are paid heavily for the crap! You can publish tour book and earn your place. So how to publish a book?

Before you start writing, it is advisable that you do not write at all. You must be wondering what this is all about? But if you think from the publishers point of view, it is advisable that you write about the current trends and topics which are most sought after by the audience. There is no point, spending years, writing something, which nobody wants to read. You need to first consider getting a literary agent, as the literary world is a very close knit community, and they accept books only through very specific channels. The agents would help you in churning and filtering the topics and recommend the ones which are needed by most publications and in demand.

What’s the role of an agent?

An agent is a separate individual, who acts as a middleman between you and the publishing house. He/ she knows what the publishers want. If you sent a manuscript directly to the publishers, do you think they are going to read it? It happens most of the time and with most renowned publishers that they consider your writings and go through the pieces only if they are recommended by an agent. Agents read the manuscripts or ideals and decide if a project is promising.

If the agent feels that the work is good, he would sign a contract with the author, promising that he would put his best efforts to get the work sold to a publishing house for a 15% deal. And it is really not all that easy to please an agent. Agents at times can be very choosy about who they sign, as this would hamper their reputation with the publishers. In most cases, the editors at publishing houses deal with only those agents who have a very good track record and are known for presenting quality work. It is therefore essential that you get an agent on board. Once you are signed by an agent, half of the work is done.

Agents, like publishers, do not like to read the entire manuscripts. In fact they do not read more than 1 page. So if you want an agent to pay attention to your work, send a query letter to the said agent. A query letter is a short summary of your ideal, who you are and why you are qualified to write for the said project.

If you still think that getting an agent is an expensive deal and you would not like to part with 15% of the profits, think again. It is really worth all the money once you are signed by an agent. You will find thousand of literary agents across America and a few very good guides who provide millions of information about what kind of work they are looking for and how to contact them.

Finding Appropriate Publishers:

For all those who would like to go without an agent one can always contact medium sized to small publishers, who are good options for first time authors. Here’s how you can go about finding probable publishers

  • Visit a good bookstore which is quiet commercial in nature. Check the sections of the books and note the categories in which your book falls. Look for the publishers of the books. You should find as many as you can. These are the publishers who would be most interested to publish your work, since they know the market and where the books are in demand. These publishes should form a list to be contacted.

Visit a university library and look for the following reference books, Writer Market or Literary Market Place. The former has a list of all the publishers in the country and the type of book they publish. It also gives details of how to submit, along with phone numbers and addresses to the publishing house. There are also sections and categories so that you reach the right topic related to your book. The second book is more or less the same, but it is less user friendly as it is made from the publishers’ point of view rather than the writers.


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