The Key Book Publishing Paths: 2021–2022

The Key Book Publishing Paths: 2021–2022

Should you self-publish or traditionally publish? This infographic will help you determine the best choice for you and your project.
how to find publishers and agents

How to Find Publishers

If you have a book idea or manuscript, one of your first questions is probably: How do I find a publisher? Here are the most popular, essential resources.
The Complete Guide to Query Letters

The Complete Guide to Query Letters

The query letter has one purpose, and one purpose only: to seduce the agent or editor into reading or requesting your work. The query letter is so much of a sales piece that it's quite possible to write one without having written a word of the manuscript. All it requires is a firm grasp of your story premise.
small presses

How to Evaluate Small Publishers—Plus Digital-Only Presses and Hybrids

As the publishing industry has transformed in the digital age, small press activity has proliferated. Here's how authors can evaluate their offerings.
pitching agents at writers conferences

How to Pitch Agents at a Writers Conference

Pitching agents at a writers conference can be a difficult task for the new writer. Here's how to make it a little easier on yourself.
bestsellerdom

How Do Books Become Bestsellers? (Can Authors Increase Those Chances?)

Is a book's success all luck, even if 'luck' includes hitting the right subject matter at the right time, or is it marketing—and can an indie author in any way compete with a publisher?
Nielsen book sales share

The Myth About Print Coming Back (Updated)

Discussions about the "resurgence" of print and the comeback of independent bookstores amounts to wishful thinking, not an understanding of the industry.
Digital Book World 2017 - photo by Porter Anderson

What the Industry Is Talking About: Best Takeaways for Authors From Digital Book World

My industry newsletter for authors, The Hot Sheet, released a special (and free) issue last week with original reporting from Digital Book World.
Kindle Press

How Kindle Press Made My Novel a Bestseller

In 2015, Kindle Press published about 90 novels. By the end of 2016, it had published a total of 218 books—all chosen through the Kindle Scout program.
agents or editors

Should You Submit Your Work to Agents or Editors?

Is it better to look for a literary agent first, or to approach editors and publishers? Much depends on the commercial potential of your work.
author platform building

Building a Platform to Land a Book Deal: Why It Often Fails

If you're preparing to pitch your nonfiction work to agents or publishers, you may have heard about the necessity of platform. What if you don't have one?
book publishing industry

Looking Back at 2016: Important Publishing Developments Authors Should Know

A round-up of important 2016 publishing news and trends that will affect authors in the years to come.
hybrid publisher

What Is a Hybrid Publisher?

Defining a "hybrid publisher" is difficult; you will hear different descriptions depending on who you ask. Here's what you need to know to evaluate one.
editorial control in contracts

Negotiating Editorial Control in Publishing Contracts

Today’s guest post is from writer and Sidebar Saturdays blogger Matt Knight (@mattknightbooks). One of many worrisome areas for writers
hiring a pro editor

Should You Hire a Professional Editor?

But being able to truly see if you’ve been successful in writing a compelling work requires objectivity and distance than can be hard to achieve on your own—and this is where a professional editor comes in.
publishing industry

The Publishing Industry in 2016: A Status Update

Traditional publishers are experiencing a slump, and the decline of Barnes & Noble isn't helping. A look at news and trends in book publishing in 2016.
should you self-publish

Should You Self-Publish or Traditionally Publish?

Should you self-publish? There is no single right answer to this question—it's always situational. It depends on you, your book, and your career goals. This post outlines the key questions you should ask.
Barry Eisler

5 On: Barry Eisler

Author Barry Eisler discusses the pros and cons (where they exist) of legacy, Amazon, and self-publishing; research and editing; selling book rights; and more.
An antique world map.

Selling Your Books Internationally

Helen Sedwick and Orna Ross discuss selling international rights to your book.
Reggie Lutz

5 On: Reggie Lutz

Author and radio broadcaster Reggie Lutz discusses her tendency as a writer to synthesize fiction genres, recommends qualities to look for in a writing critique group, offers advice on pitching and interviewing with radio hosts, and more.
traditional publishing

Traditional Publishing: What’s It Good For?

No one used to question the value of a publisher, but now everyone's wondering: What are they good for?
query letters for nonfiction

How to Write a Query Letter: Nonfiction and Memoir

Learn how to pitch your nonfiction book to agents and publishers—whether you're writing memoir, narrative nonfiction, or prescriptive nonfiction.
taxes for authors

Do Men Receive Bigger Book Advances Than Women?

Do males or females receive higher advances? I look at Publishers Marketplace deals data to find out.
Decline in Fiction Sales

The State of the Publishing Industry in 5 Charts

Take a look at 5 charts that reflect current trends in the book publishing industry, and what they mean for authors.
Writer's Digest October 2014

The Value of Agent-Assisted Self-Publishing

Read my feature article for Writer's Digest magazine that explores the intersection of literary agents and self-publishing
Book profit and loss statement

The Book P&L: How Publishers Make Decisions About What to Publish

Publishers use a P&L (profit & loss) statement to determine whether a book makes financial sense to publish. Here's how they work—plus an example form.
Amazon Publishing

My Experience Working with Amazon Publishing

Author Carol Bodensteiner answers the seven questions she gets most about working with Amazon Publishing.
do you love your publisher #authorsay

Do You Love Your Publisher: Author Survey Results

Last month, author Harry Bingham and I launched an author survey to explore the experiences and current leanings of traditionally published authors in the
What You Need to Know About Crowdfunded Publishing   

What You Need to Know About Crowdfunded Publishing  

What is crowdfunded publishing? Learn about the two types of models now prevalent, plus the major services you can choose from.
Scott Berkun, The Year Without Pants

Book Marketing Must Center (Mostly) on the Author: Q&A with Scott Berkun

Full-time author and speaker Scott Berkun discusses his book marketing experiences as both a traditionally published author and self-published author.
Harry Bingham between houses

Why Authors Walk Away From Good, Big 5 Publishers

UK author Harry Bingham describes the four stages of his career, and why he's decided to self-publish after good experiences with traditional houses.
How to Tell If Your Story Idea Is Mediocre—And How to Improve It

How to Tell If Your Story Idea Is Mediocre—And How to Improve It

Note from Jane: Today's guest post is adapted from The Writer's Advantage: A Toolkit for Mastering Your Genre by Laurie
Smart Set

Is Publishing in Trouble or Not—Decide! [Smart Set]

Welcome to The Smart Set, a weekly series where I curate a selection of articles from the past week related to the publishing/media
Earning the Authors a Say

Earning the Authors a Say

Much shorter and quicker to go over than the initial report, this edition takes into account information interpreted from approximately 11,000 titles in genre fiction; 900 in literary fiction; 30,000 in non-fiction; and some 10,000 in children's (not YA) fiction. Hugh Howey has, since the first report, adopted a more frequent use of the term "spider" for the software his still-unnamed associate is deploying.
Infographic: 4 Key Publishing Paths

Infographic: 4 Key Book Publishing Paths

This infographic breaks down the key 5 publishing paths, their value to authors, the potential pitfalls, and examples of each.
Commodity Publishing and The Future of Fiction

Commodity Publishing, Self-Publishing, and The Future of Fiction

Many years ago, when I started working for Writer’s Digest, I was put on the self-publishing beat. I started by
Avery Monsen & Jory John

What Is an Author’s Marketing Responsibility With a Traditional Publisher?

It is a pleasure to share this interview with two authors who are also marketing geniuses, Avery Monsen (@averymonsen) and
Jane Knows

When’s the Right Time to Leave Your Big Six Publisher?

I received the following question from published author Lisa Earle McLeod—who I remember first meeting at a Foothills Writers Guild