Book publishing is in a bit of a weird place right now. The internet, much like Gutenberg’s printing press, has put power back in the hands of individuals. The spread of good (and bad) ideas, great stories, entertainment and knowledge has never been so easy.
That being said, there’s also a lot of noise. Finding an audience can be tricky because sometimes the internet feels like a big wide open space that you can shout into without ever being heard.
I saw an interesting job posting on LinkedIn recently. Macmillan Publishing was hiring a Digital Strategist/Product Owner for a “new online self-publishing platform and community.” From the description, it looks like they’re on track to create a competitor to Booktrope.
There’s lots of money to be made after all. Self-publishing is the future because it’s so easy to do. Give authors a community, a platform, and some resources to help with outreach and the technical aspects of online publishing and you’re bound to get a few winners. Take 30% of all book sales with little to no work on your end and boom! you’ve struck gold. It’s worked out for Booktrope so far.
I’ve been getting a lot of emails lately about book marketing. Authors feel frustrated that they haven’t figured out how to “get the word out” about their books as one reader put it. Many don’t have a whole lot of money to spend on promoting their books and they don’t know how to invest their time wisely.
I’ve worked with a few authors over the past year or so on their book marketing strategies. There are three main questions I always want to find out before we get started. These questions form the basis of how successful an author will be and which direction they need to go to find that success.
Hopefully sharing these questions with you will help provide direction in your own book marketing efforts.
A reader recently reached out and asked what to do with a pile of rejection letters. He was feeling discouraged, even though he’d gotten many compliments on his book, and he was looking for some alternative publishing platforms. Here’s what I had to say…
The Truth About Rejection
As a new author, rejection is commonplace. When you’re reaching out to agents & publishers, you’ll probably get a lot of ‘this book isn’t right for me’ or flat out silence. This doesn’t mean your book is bad and it certainly doesn’t mean there isn’t an audience for it.
What’s happened is that many agents and publishers are stuck in the stone age. They haven’t moved forward with the tools & platforms now widely available and therefore can’t handle the amount of submissions they’re getting.
So What Should You Do?
Don’t give up! Read the rest of the article to learn more:
Ricardo Fayet, Co-Founder of Reedsy, recently interviewed me for a write-up he was doing on whether or not it is worth authors partnering with marketers. You can take a look at the article over on the Reedsy blog, but I wanted to share the full set of questions and answers here.
The social web, advances in physical technology, and the rule of the knowledge doubling curve, are all factors in making word of mouth the authority in communication once again. So much content (conversation, stories, essays, and research) is being produced on a daily basis that it is impossible to archive and standardize.
Oral tradition is once again the rule, albeit in a digital, textual, visual form (blogs, twitter, and tumblr). We’re back to cave paintings and engravings, but in a much more sophisticated way.