Five Things Your Publisher Won't Tell You
by Fern Reiss, CEO, PublishingGame.com/Expertizing.com
There are many,
many good reasons to seek a large publisher for your book.
But there are also many reasons why writers, who’ve
danced in jubilation at landing a big publisher, aren’t
laughing anymore even just a few months after their book
comes out. You can get more information on your other publishing
options at http://www.PublishingGame.com, but in the meantime,
here are five things your publisher won’t tell you:
We do no publicity. Ten years ago, publishers did some marketing
for books. Today, even the biggest and best do almost none.
(They send out advance galleys, and wait to see if anyone
is interested. Then they focus all their publicity on the
books that look like they’re going to hit the big-time.)
So if you want your book to fly off bookstore shelves, guess
who’s going to have to do all the publicity? You got
Your book has 4 months. If your book doesn’t sell in
the first four months of bookstore life, it gets remaindered,
and disappears from bookstore shelves. Unless you hit the
ground running with publicity, your book could be at Buck
a Book almost before you’ve held your book party.
95% of books don’t pay back their advance. You know
that royalty that’s supposed to kick in as soon as
you’ve accrued in sales as they’ve already paid
you in advance? Fergeddaboutit. These days, very few books
pay back their advance, according to Publishers Weekly. So
what you get up front is usually all you ever see.
Traditional publishing is slooooooow. Unless you’ve
got a political tell-all, your book is going to spend two
to three years wending its way to the bookstores. You need
to be sure your topic won’t wilt in that time. And
you need to be sure you’re still going to be interested
in publicizing it three years from now.
If you screw up on your first book, you’re dead in
the water. If you do well with your first book, publishers
will be eager to see your next title. But if you don’t
sell a lot of books, your publisher might not be returning
your phonecalls when it comes time to peddle your second
book. The pressure is on.
Nothing can replace the cachet of having published with
a traditional publisher. But if it’s money or bookstore
shelf-life you’re looking for, look elsewhere. And
be prepared to do a lot of publicity.
Fern Reiss is CEO of PublishingGame.com (www.PublishingGame.com) and Expertizing.com (www.Expertizing.com) and the author of the books, The Publishing Game: Find an Agent in 30 Days, The Publishing Game: Bestseller in 30 Days, and The Publishing Game: Publish a Book in 30 Days as well as several other award-winning books. She is also the Director of the International Association of Writers (www.AssociationofWriters.com) providing publicity vehicles to writers worldwide. She also runs The Expertizing® Publicity Forum where you can pitch your book or business directly to journalists; more information at www.Expertizing.com/forum.htm. Sign up for her complimentary newsletter at www.PublishingGame.com/signup.htm.
Copyright © 2011 Fern Reiss