The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published: How to Write It, Sell It, and Market It . . . Successfully

The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published: How to Write It, Sell It, and Market It . . . Successfully

by Arielle Eckstut, David Henry Sterry


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A complete author's toolkit: The guide that demystifies every step of the publishing process.

No matter what type of book you want to write—fiction, nonfiction, humor, sci-fi, romance, cookbook, children's book—here is how to take an idea you're passionate about, develop it into a manuscript or proposal, get it published, and deliver it into the hands and hearts of readers. Includes interviews with dozens of publishing insiders—agents, editors, besteslling authors, and booksellers. Real-life success stories and the lessons they impart. Plus sample proposals and query letters, a resource guide, and more.

Updated to cover ebooks, self-publishing, digital marketing, the power of social media, and more.

This complete author's toolkit includes information on:
- locating, luring, and landing an agent
- perfecting your pitch
- the nuts and bolts of a book proposal
- conquering the query letter
- finding the right publisher for YOU
- four steps to reaching readers online
- making Amazon work for you
- kickstarting your Kickstarter campaign
- the ins and outs of ebooks
- 10 things you should have on your author website
- turning rejection into a book deal
- new frontiers in self-publishing

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780761160854
Publisher: Workman Publishing Company, Inc.
Publication date: 11/04/2010
Pages: 544
Sales rank: 122,397
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

Arielle Eckstut and David Henry Sterry are co-founders of The Book Doctors. They have written 25 books between them. David’s last book appeared on the cover of The New York Times Book Review. Arielle is an agent-at-large for the Levine Greenberg Rostan Literary Agency.

Table of Contents

Introduction xv

Part I Setting Up Shop

Chapter 1 Writing The Right Idea 3

The Economics of Publishing 3

Judging Your Idea 6

Writers in Search of Ideas 18

What's Next" 19

Chapter 2 A World Wide Wonderland 20

The New Platform 21

Social Networking for Luddites 24

The Four-Step e-Program 30

The Apple of Your Eye 60

Chapter 3 The Perfect Package 61

Selecting Your Dream Team 61

Models for Success 62

Getting Titular: Titles and Subtitles 64

Perfecting Your Pitch 66

The Facts About the Fiction Proposal 71

The Nonfiction Proposal 72

The Value of Good Readers 97

Picking Partners: "Help, I Need Somebody!" 99

Prepare Your Package for Liftoff 103

Chapter 4 Locating, Luring and Landing the Right Agent 104

Do You Really Have to Have an Agent" 105

Locating an Agent 107

Luring the Agent 113

Landing the Big Kahuna 123

John Hancocking: Signing an Agency Contract 127

What's Next" 129

Chapter 5 Demystifying Submission 130

Agent Relations: Snarling Snafus and Scary Silences 130

Sending Your Brave Little Book Out into the World 137

The Agony and Ecstasy of "Interest" 139

Sending Your Book Directly to Publishers 146

Going Direct to Your Readers 153

And in Conclusion … 154

Chapter 6 Rejection Section 155

Rejection Rules 156

To Learn or Not to Learn 158

Taking Action 164

Part II Taking Care of Business

Chapter 7 Let's Make A Deal! 167

The Selling of Your Book 167

Sifting Wheat from Chaff: The Right Publisher for You 170

Finding a Cowriter or Dumping the One You Have 176

Negotiating Nuggets for Agentless Authors 177

Get It in Writing: The Deal Memo 179

Chapter 8 Contract Facts 181

An Askance Glance at Your Advance 181

The Reality of the Royalty 185

Delivery: The First Step Toward Blissful Acceptance 190

Copyright or Copywrong" 194

The Many Faces of Subsidiary Rights 194

Warranties and Indemnities: Publishers Covering Their Asse(t)s 198

Author Copies: "You Mean I Have to Buy My Own Books"" 199

Covering Your Cover 199

Options for Your Option 200

The Rules of Accounting 201

Sign Here, Please … 201

Someone Has to Write the Thing 202

Chapter 9 Write Away! 203

Getting Your Ducks in a Row so You Can Get Quacking 203

Getting Started 216

More Readers 220

More on Outside Help 224

Don't Let Running Out of Time Drive You Out of Your Mind 225

Postpartum Depression 226

One Last Thing Before You Turn It In 226

Chapter 10 Working With Your Publisher 227

Editor 101 229

The Mother of All Meetings: The Launching of Your Book 244

Preparing Your Book for Cataloging 249

The Six Month Meeting 262

The Sales Conference 265

Making a Stink: When to Get Mad and When to Shut Up 267

Enjoying the Ride 268

Chapter 11 Publish Thyself 269

Why Do You Want to Publish Your Book on Your Own" 270

The Costs and Components of Self-Publishing 282

Self-Publishing Roulette 287

Publicity and Marketing 296

Selling Your Book 298

Live, Learn and Prosper 306

Part III Getting the Word Out

Chapter 12 Prepub Publicity And Marketing 309

Putting Yourself in Expert Hands 310

Selling Yourself: An Overview 319

To Tour or Not to Tour 346

Preparing for Your First Interview 358

Building Buzz 362

Chapter 13 Launching Your Book and Keeping It Alive 363

Your Pub Date 364

Giving Away Books (Yes, That's Right, Giving Them Away) 365

Connecting with Your Readers 367

Bookstore Love 369

Making an Eventful Event 373

A Tour of Your Book Tour 385

Back to Pitching and Hooking 395

Book Club Heaven 399

Awards As Buzz 400

Keeping Your Book Ball Rolling 400

The Golden Rules Are … 403

Chapter 14 The Fine Art of Selling 404

"How Many Copies Did You Say"" 405

Back to the Bookstore 407

Selling Books in Unexpected Places 413

Sales on the Web 414

Lovely, Luscious Libraries 417

Back to School 417

Rotten Returns 418

The Last Word on Royalties 418

Keep the Sales Train Rolling 421

Chapter 15 Okay, What's Next" 422

Don't Make the Same Mistake Twice 423

Look at the Numbers 424

Have the Next Idea Ready 425

When to Send 427

Th-Th-Th-That's All, Folks! 427

Appendices 429

Appendix I Great Books on Writing 431

Appendix II Resources 433

Appendix III Selected Publishers 439

Appendix IV Standard Permission Form 448

Appendix V Our Proposal for This Book 449

Acknowledgments 465

Index 469

About The Authors 481

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Praise for the First Edition of The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published (Previously published as Putting Your Passion Into Print)

“A must-have for every aspiring writer . . . Thorough, forthright, quite entertaining.”—Khaled Hosseini, bestselling author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns (Riverhead)

“Before you write your own book, read this one. Arielle Eckstut and David Henry Sterry understand the process of publishing—their advice will help you envision and frame your work so that publishers will be more likely to perceive its value.”—Jonathan Karp, publisher, Simon & Schuster

“I had no idea that the code of publishing would be as hard to decipher as the secret language of adolescent girls. If only I had Putting Your Passion into Print when I started writing!”—Rosalind Wiseman, author of Queen Bees and Wannabees, the book that inspired the movie Mean Girls (Three Rivers)

Putting Your Passion Into Print changed my life. I read and reread each of your chapters, lived by your organizational and promotional advice, and, despite all odds, my rather uncategorizable book is a success. With no track record or cash, we’ve gotten onto TV and into national print media, been blurbed by the LA Times and the Village Voice, and sold out a third of our print run within three weeks of launch.”—Molly Crabapple, author of Dr. Sketchy’s Official Rainy Day Colouring Book (Sepuculture Books)

“I started with nothing but an idea, and then I bought this book. Soon I had an A-list agent, a near six-figure advance, and multiple TV deals in the works. Buy it and memorize it. This little tome is the quiet secret of rockstar authors.”—Timothy Ferriss, bestselling author of The 4-Hour Workweek (Crown)

Putting Your Passion into Print has been absolutely invaluable through this whole process! It’s on my bedside, with dozens of post-its peeking out!”—Veronica Wolff, author of Master of the Highlands Series (Berkley)

“Arielle and David did a masterful job at deconstructing our complicated, often irrational industry. Putting Your Passion into Print is fun to read and brutally honest, but it’s also energizing and inspiring.”—Lynn Goldberg, CEO, Goldberg McDuffie Communications

“I curled up in a big chair and read Putting Your Passion into Print like a novel. Written with insight and humor, it takes us through the writing process from idea to sequel. I wish I had a book this thorough and thoughtful and downright indispensable for every aspect of my life.”—Karen Cushman, author of the Newbury Award winner The Midwife’s Apprentice and Newbury Award runner-up Catherine, Called Birdy (HarperCollins)

“This is a terrific book. It’s practical, it’s fun to read, and it totally demystifies the publishing process. Whether you are just setting out to write a book, or already have several published books under your belt, you will find this an invaluable resource. There is no doubt in my mind that it will become a standard of the industry, sitting right alongside Writer’s Market and The Chicago Manual of Style. (And let me tell you—it’s a much better read than either of those books could ever dream of being!)”—Rick Beyer, author of The Greatest Stories Never Told Series (Harper)

“I took myself to lunch today and brought along Putting Your Passion Into Print, and I’ll be damned but it made me remember why I love this business and why the suffering is all worth it in the end. It’s a terrific book that finally put me in a good mood again.”—Annik LaFarge, former publisher of Bloomsbury Books

“You know all those books sitting on your shelf about how to get published? Well, you can finally unload them at your garage sale because this book is all you’ll ever need. A-to-Z, Soup-to-Nuts, this is the most comprehensive guide available on how to become a published author.”—Nancy Levine, author of The Tao of Pug (Penguin)

“These two know everything about the book business and share every detail in this fabulous book. Putting your Passion into Print answers every question you have with playful charm, wisdom and savvy. If you’ve written a book, are writing one or are just thinking about it, you NEED Putting Your Passion Into Print. It will make a marvelous gift for all of your writer or would-be writer friends. You’ll love it.”—Susan G. Wooldridge, author of poemcrazy (Three Rivers Press)

“This book is a must-have! I cannot say enough about how helpful, inspiring and dead-on it is.”—Tracy Davis, author of My Husband Ran Off with the Nanny and God Do I Miss Her (self-published)

“I got an agent and a publisher for my book within 3 weeks of submitting the proposal—and not a single rejection letter! When would-be authors ask me for advice I send them to the store to buy Putting Your Passion Into Print! Bravo to the authors for a comprehensive guide to writing, publishing and marketing your book.”—Donna Cutting, author of The Celebrity Experience: Insider Secrets to Delivering Red-Carpet Customer Service (Wiley)

“I recommend this book to every author I know, at any stage of their careers. I’m such a vociferous advocate, some of my friends may think I’m in a cult!”—Melissa Kirsch, author of The Girl’s Guide to Absolutely Everything (Workman)

“As a consultant, I make my living by understanding how companies and industries work from the inside out. To succeed as an author, you need an inside-out view of how publishing works. For that, there’s simply no better guide than Putting Your Passion into Print.”—Geoffrey Moore, author of four Wall Street Journal and Business Week bestsellers, including Crossing the Chasm and The Gorilla Game (Harper)

Putting Your Passion into Print offers aspiring authors refreshingly honest, knowledgeable and detailed advice on not only how to get published, but how to deal with every phase of the publishing process constructively and realistically. It’s an invaluable resource for anyone who dreams about having his/her book not only published, but published well.”—Jamie Raab, publisher, Grand Central

“If you’ve ever thought about writing a book, are in the process of writing a book or have written a book and are contemplating another, stop what you’re doing right now—and buy this book. It contains everything you need to know to proceed, especially how to press your own enthusiasm button.”—Sandra Blakeslee, author of The Unexpected Legacy of Divorce (Harper Perennial), Phantoms in the Brain (Hyperion), and On Intelligence (St. Martin’s Griffin)

“This honest, comprehensive and inspiring book is the best description of the contemporary publishing world that I’ve seen. It should be at the center of every writer’s reference shelf for decades.”—Neal Pollack, author of Never Mind the Pollacks and The Neal Pollack Anthology of American Literature (Harper Paperbacks, Harper Perennial)

“From coming up with an idea to promoting the finished book, these insiders tell you what you need to know and inspire you to do it—with wit, charm and a thorough knowledge of what they write.”—Amy Cherry, editor, W.W. Norton

Putting Your Passion into Print is a Rosetta Stone for authors, a guide that takes the mystery and uncertainty out of getting your book published. This book takes you inside the publishing industry and reveals what makes it tick. Prospective authors, listen up. This is the definitive manual on taming this lumbering giant. If you want your book to see the light of day, read this one.”—Larry Dossey, M.D., author of The Extraordinary Healing Power of Ordinary Things, Reinventing Medicine (Three Rivers), and Healing Words (HarperOne)
“Finally, a comprehensive, compelling, hilarious and amazingly insightful book about the painful and wonderful world of getting a book published. It’s as much about passion and teamwork as it is about royalties and advances. I loved it!”—Patrick M. Lencioni, bestselling author of The Five Dysfunctions of a Team (Jossey-Bass)

“I wish I had had this book when I started writing for publication. It’s got the perfect blend of right-brain creativity and left-brain strategy to help you succeed as an author.”—Dr. Betty Edwards, bestselling author of Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain (Tarcher)

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