Being published is like getting married

People wonder about who they will one day marry, about being pampered, who they’ll invite, the DJ, the dancing, fun on their special day and the excitement of their honeymoon. Most people don’t think rest of their married life. The publishing process is much a wedding. There’s a contact, working closely with an editor, the […]

Authors Hate Marketing Books

Everyone hates marketing books. So if you hate marketing your books, you’re normal. If you have a great book, it can make you very rich. If you don’t believe it, ask any famous author and, while you’re at it, also ask him or her whether they also hate marketing. I believe you’ll find they not […]

Don’t Cry If Your Book Isn’t Selling

The lament usually goes something like this: I was published by this small publisher who did nothing to market my book and because of that it sold only a few copies. Authors reference the fact that with a small publisher there’s no book signings, no full page ads in the New York Times and no […]

It’s Busness, Partner

A person the other day complimented me on getting back to her so quickly about her query. She also wanted to know how I decide to ask for a writing sample or reject at the query level. My process is very simple. When someone queries me, I Google them to see if they’ve done anything […]

Do Publishers Market to Readers?

Do publishers advertise books? Yes, but not directly to readers. Larger publishers produce book catalogs that are sent through their marketing department to their distributors, who, in turn, send them to bookstores. Publishers also send books to reviewers at Publisher’s Weekly, Kirkus, and The Library Journal. Do reader subscribe to these review magazines? No. These […]

Advance Alert

In short, we are no longer offering advances to new authors. About a year or so ago, we decided to change our contract and begin offering advances against royalties to authors. Our goal was to be more competitive. We knew from past experience as literary agents that this endeavor carried with it inherent risk, but […]

One Plus One Doesn’t Always Equal Two

I really enjoy talking to authors, or potential authors. However, many authors, if you asked them why they are writing their book, will answer, “Well, to be published.” They say this like, “Isn’t it obvious? Why else would I be writing?” Some don’t actually say it but you can read it in their eyes, in […]

Love is Rare

It’s rare, as an acquisitions editor, that I find a raw manuscript that is in completely publishable shape. Most of what I see are stories that are not going anywhere and those that are headed someplace need help before their authors can visualize what they could be. My job is like a treasure hunter. I […]

Publishing Contract Conversations

I’m not frequently asked what’s the reason for a publishing contract, but I’m sure many authors wonder. I’ll try to make this very short as there are entire books written on this subject.  The short version is there must be agreement between the parties involved.  Publishing contracts deal with copyright. When an author sits down […]

Narrative Discovery

New authors usually write like they talk and this results in overwritten passages. When editing your work, ask yourself this:  Does my reader need this information?  Am I telling instead of showing my story or ideas? Here’s an example: It is a family tradition to go to the fair in the summertime.  We always go by […]