How Three Publishing Myths Kill the Author
Judy Cullins c. 2004
Agents and publishing houses have their best interests at heart,
not the author's. Save yourself from headaches, disappointments,
and money down the drain. Become your own independent publisher
and produce your book faster and cheaper. All you need is a little
help from professionals.
Myth: You need an agent or big publishing house to market your
book and make big money.
Since big publishers don't look at unknown authors, now is the
time to look at what they can do for you. Dan Poynter, self-publishing
guru, says that if a publisher can't sell four times as many books
as you can, you're better off selling it yourself. Self-publish
first because it acts as a test market for your book. If it sells
well (over 10,000 in a year), publishers may be interested in your
Traditional publishers and agents accept only 1-2% of authors'
submissions, and even if you are one of the "chosen" you
may not make much money after printing, bookstore, distributor,
wholesaler and other expenses--probably $2 on a $14 book. Yes, you
get an advance, but your sales must meet that and more. And after
the initial book tour, the trainee marketing person is onto the
next new author. Then, your books disappear from the bookstore shelf
unless you, personally, devote a lot of time to marketing them.
Book Publishing is a new game today. Think self-publishing where
the profits are all yours. Thanks to Dan Poynter of the Self Pulsing
Manual for giving us permission to do part of the task ourselves.
If you self-publish and decide to print, you need to print only
the copies you need (5-500) with the new technology Print on Demand
(POD). Even better is Print Quantity Needed (PQN) such as Deharts.com.
No more unsold cartons of books in your closets or garage. You print
as you go leaving enough cash flow to market your book splendidly.
Myth: To be a respected author, you must invest thousands of hours
of time on your full-length book.
The reality is that people today want concise and useful information.
You don't have to write a 200-page book to be a real author. Remember
The One-Minute Manager and the One- Minute Salesperson? Around one
hundred pages. People want information fast and convenient. Create
short information products that are between 20 and 99 pages you
can sell online, even if you don't have your own Web site.
If you choose to print your book with Print Quantity Needed (PQN),
your perfect bound books will look as good as any book on the bookstore
Myth: Authors must spend a lot of money to publish themselves.
The printing costs for 1500 copies of a 160-page book might cost
$3000, about $2 a unit. Small runs cost even more per unit. That's
a lot of cash for anyone to put out all at once, and it's not worth
it to many of us to use our home equity or life savings to finance
our book. The answer is a small run with Print on Demand (POD) where
you can print from 100 to 500 for around $2.40 for 160 pages. Without
the high inventory, you can maintain a comfortable cash flow to
spend on promotion, the most important part of your book adventure.
You save even more money if you don't print your book. Book publishing
is going Internet. You can write small books in less time, market
them easily and inexpensively on the Web and reap profits sooner.
Try an e-book. It can be downloaded, it takes no printing costs
because your buyer prints or downloads it. You don't even have to
have the whole book finished to sell it. Just include your table
of contents at the end of each chapter and present it as an e-serial
As a book coach, I am an authors' advocate and want you to make
money. Going traditional doesn't work. Give ePublishing a chance.
For more information about writing, books, and publishing click here.
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Book and Internet Marketing Coach, Judy Cullins, can help you build credibility and clients, sell a lot of books, and make maximum profits. Author of 11 books including Write your eBook or Other Short Book Fast and The Fast and Cheap Way to Explode Targeted Web Traffic" Get her free eBook"20 High Octane Book Writing and Marketing Tips" and two free monthly ezines at http://www.bookcoaching.com