FIVE TIPS TO BREAKING IN WITH A PUBLISHER – TIP #1: THE IDEA
Hello writers, hope all is going well! You may have noticed that this is now the “first” blog posted here. I have decided to completely revamp this section to include blogs that are shorter and more focused on tips and strategies that can help you with your fiction and nonfiction book writing.
I’ve decided that for my first few blogs, I’m going to share some tips about breaking in as a new author that come not just from my experience, but also from conversations with agents, publishers and other writers. We all know that getting the attention of agents and publishers is a tall order, especially in today’s overcrowded and limited opportunity market. However, there are some things you can do that can give you an advantage. I’ve learned that there are essentially FIVE things you can show publishers that will help set you and your work apart. The first is…
Well, of course you need to have a good idea! Seems pretty obvious, right? But having a good idea is a lot more than just…having a good idea. You need to have a book that is exceptional, potentially interesting to a wide array of readers and marketable for a publishing firm. If you’re looking for a publisher to carry your book, you need to show them that your idea or story can attract an audience, and that there are a number of ways in which they can go about doing just that.
The key to the right idea is to develop a concept that shares some elements of past successful works in the same genre, while providing your own spin or unique story, something that will make it truly unique. It’s not easy, but any publisher (or literary agent for that matter) will want something that has the qualities that elevated another work in the same vein to high demand, while also giving them something fresh and interesting that they can market as new. Again, not easy, but if you can do it, you can find publishing gold and your book will get sold!
In summary, when you’re writing, be familiar with other similar works (more on that next time) and start thinking about how yours takes what’s best from those, provides something different, and how those elements can best be marketed!
Next tip coming soon. Until then, happy writing!