Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The Two Paths to Publication

I have noticed via "writerly" friends that many of the receive emails/tweets/notes from fans and/or other writers asking them for advice on how to break into the business of "authoring."
Yes, I realize I've created two new words.

For those who would like to ask my opinion on how to begin a career, I believe there are two ways to go about it.

1) The Traditional Route
Step 1: Write a great book.
Step 2: Query literary agents.
Step 3: Sign with a literary agent. If not, write another great book and begin again with Step 2.
Step 4 (optional - depending on your agent): Revisions.
Step 5: Submission to publishers.
Step 6: Wait.
Step 7: Offers from publishers. If not, return to Step 4 or 5 and begin again with a different book.
Step 8: Revision per editorial notes.
Step 9: More revision per editorial notes.
Step 10: More revisions per copy editor.
Step 11: Promotion, blog tours, cover reveals, etc.
Step 12: Book release.
Step 13: Repeat Step 11.
Step 14: Write the next book and begin again at Step 4 or 5.

2) The Self-Publishing Route
Step 1: Write a great book.
Step 2: Hire a freelance editor.
Step 3: Revisions per editorial notes.
Step 4: Hire a copy editor.
Step 5: Revisions per the copy editor notes.
Step 6: Hire a graphic artist for the cover and manage creative process.
Step 7: Hire a formatter, or learn how to format your own book per publisher guidelines.
Step 8: Promotion, blog tours, cover reveals, etc.
Step 9: Upload appropriate formatted versions to various publishers.
Step 10: Book Release.
Step 11: Repeat Step 8.
Step 12: Write another great book and begin again from Step 2.

As you can see, both routes have almost an equal amount of steps, although the traditional route does take a significant amount of time LONGER, as you deal with agents and the publisher's staff availability, tastes and schedules, versus hiring freelancers.

Both paths are valid, and hard work and both begin with the same first step: Writing a great book.

I wish you all the best of luck in which ever path you choose.
I know some authors that do both!