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Prequels build buzz!

Have you heard what some savvy authors are doing to build excitement and attract readers to their upcoming books? They’re writing prequels: tantalizing teasers in short story form that preview the key characters and settings of an upcoming novel. Some prequels predate or provide backstories for the longer books to come. Others are like outtakes [...]


An interview with yours truly about self-publishing

A while ago I sat for an interview with Brian Felsen, CEO of BookBaby, a service provider for self-publishing authors. He asked a lot of good questions for authors about working with an editor, getting published, and effective book promotion. Here’s the video, in which we talk about how the role of the author has [...]


How to find a hungry agent

Here’s a literary agent who’s very specific about the kind of book she’d like to see in her inbox: “I love books with some kind of psychological element, like if the MC has a mental illness or if they can’t trust their mind.” Working on anything like that? Or something close? Want to know more [...]


Market sizzles for debut authors

“Editors still love a chance at debut fiction,” says Manhattan literary agent Michelle Brower. “If the book is unique and meaningful, the debut author doesn’t yet have a bad sales track record so we can look at their book with all of the rosiness of potential rather than reality” Good news That’s some of the [...]


Timing your book’s launch date for maximum impact

Strategic timing of your book’s publication date can give it a jet-propelled boost and have a major impact on its long-term success. Commercial publishers and booksellers have known this forever. Christmas and beyond Retailers rack up between 25-35 percent of their annual revenues during the holiday shopping season in November and December. Smart publishers start [...]


Big-6 publisher jumps on the indie bandwagon

Was it just a matter of time? The news came recently that Penguin Group, one of the largest book publishers in the world, has acquired Author Solutions Inc (ASI), a leading provider of services for self-publishing writers, for $116 million. Penguin’s CEO, John Makinson, waxed rhapsodic in remarks made at the time and quoted this [...]


The bears and bulls of publishing: An insider steps up

EBook buyers read more books. They’re the future! We’re in the midst of a fantastic transition. Words from another outsider advocating the overthrow of legacy publishing? Nope. Not this time. Instead, these bullish sentiments come from a consummate insider, John Glusman, editor-in-chief of W.W. Norton, a mainstream highly regarded traditional house that publishes bestselling authors [...]


What writers can learn from Barry Eisler

It’s inspiring when a successful author goes out of his way to help others in the craft of writing. Barry Eisler is one of those good guys. Though he’d probably rather be known as one baaad dude. He’s a one-time CIA operative, a judo black belt and an intellectual property attorney, who’s also a bestselling [...]


Launching a successful blog tour

“When I was first starting out, I dreamed of being sent on a book tour. I’d travel around the world—at my publisher’ expense, of course—and hit the major bookstores, where I’d do readings and signings for standing-room-only audiences,” says Jackie Morse Kessler, the author of a four-book YA series with Houghton/Graphia: Hunger, Rage, Loss and [...]


Book marketing & publicity: Advice from three experts

A smart marketing consultant can be the secret weapon in an author’s campaign to market and promote a book. That’s according to Adrienne Biggs, one of three experts interviewed for this post. Since not all authors are experienced or even comfortable selling themselves, professional consultants can help with customized marketing strategies to reach your targeted [...]