As I near completion of my manuscript, I continue to research publishing options. The more I research, the more options I seem to find. The first decision that I need to make is whether I want to go the traditional publishing house route or the quickly expanding self publishing route.
If I go the traditional publishing route, then I should strongly consider contracting a literary agent. Someone who understands the publishing world and has the necessary contacts. Being a beginner author, this relationship would be crucial for me.
Traditional publishing houses understandably receive tons of requests to review new manuscripts. Because there are only so much time in a day, most manuscripts that are submitted without some kind of relationship already in place get quickly rejected. It is not that the book is not a good one, it is just not the best way of acquiring a book deal in today’s marketplace.
If I go the self publishing route, I need to decide how much I want to partner with a publisher. Many of the traditional publishing houses now have developed a division dedicated to self publishers offering them various packages in helping with the process.
My friend, Lance, turned me onto Michael Hyatt’s blog – www.michaelhyatt.com. Michael Hyatt is the former Chairman and CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers, one of the largest publishers in North America. His blog offers tons of great advice for authors, both experienced and novice.
Here is some advice he gave in a blog about deciding if self publishing is for you:
- You are passionate about your book idea but can’t seem to find a publisher or agent who “gets it.”
- You are weary of the rejection letters and just want to get your book into print—now!
- You really don’t care about selling a gazillion copies and becoming famous. You just want something to give to your family and friends.
- You are a public speaker and need a book to sell at your events.
- You want a published book to explain your business philosophy and provide a “calling card” for prospective clients.
- You know that even if a publisher agrees to publish your book, you are probably not going to get A-list treatment. You might as well do it yourself and keep the lion’s share of the profits.
- You are the pastor of a church and want something to drive your sermon series more deeply into the life of your congregation.
I am not sure if any of these fit my situation exactly, as I have yet to try the traditional publisher route.
Another great piece of advice that Michael Hyatt gives is about the importance of self marketing regardless of the publishing route that I choose. I will blog more next time about what I am learning about all of that.