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How To Get Your First Book Published?

Discussion in 'General Business and Entrepreneurship' started by FreelancingQueen, Feb 7, 2016.

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  1. FreelancingQueen

    FreelancingQueen Member

    I have wanted to write my own children's books for several years now. I have great ideas, but really do not know where to get them published. I also live in a small town where there have not been many well known authors. Where does one begin when wanting to get a book published?
  2. William Clements

    William Clements Moderator Member

    I found an cheat sheat that seems to only cover points on editing at Writing Children's Books For Dummies Cheat Sheet - For Dummies.

    As for getting it published. You would need to find an publisher to go about that processes. Your other options would be to write your book and create and blog/website to promote your book and they can buy it on their. The above link gives some tips on this as well.

    Other than that, I can say possibly promoting on Craigslist, traffic exchanges, safelists, & even becoming an Author on Amazon.com and sell them on there. You have many different ways to go about it. You would even put it up as "Buy Now" or auction on Ebay.

    Either way you choose, you also need to think about if you are going to need to charge shipping (physical copy), Do I need to charge more? (Soft/hard cover), or even convenience of an E-Book.

    Good Luck!
  3. swalia

    swalia Member

    Nowadays you have an option of self-publishing too. You can also consider publishing an e-book through amazon.
  4. Errol Williams

    Errol Williams Member

    There are many ways to publish a book. As a owner of a publishing house myself and someone who started through self publishing, I know it can be quite challenging. I will list the 3 most common ways

    The most known and old way was writing your manuscript and having a publishing house pay you for your story. That is the fastest way I suppose to make money and it is the most well known way. However it is a very competitive world and unless your story is something they are specifically looking for, it's difficult to get their attention. They are likely to buy a story they think will make a profit on their end after all. So you have to cater your story to their wants and you may even have to change elements of the story that you may not want to. And you don't usually keep the rights to your story.

    The other well known way is to self publish. I have done this and it is the way with the most control on your end. You publish exactly what you want and you have control over everything. It's the most costly time wise however, since you have to either do all the illustrations and editing yourself or pay someone to do that for you. If you want it in a store you have to go there and convince the store to take your book, or if it's a large company like say Kmart, you have to speak with their distribution company. I personally believe this is the most rewarding way if you make the effort, but it is really a lot of work.

    The third way is to self publish through a publishing house. You pay a company like Authorhouse to publish your manuscript and you pay for the service you want. This can include illustrations, editing, and marketing. It's handy if you have the money to spend but not the time or will to do the other things. However it really can get very expensive depending on how far you want to take it and there is no guarantee of success. You keep the rights to the story also in case you want to go with another company or self publish by yourself. They take a huge chunk of the revenues also (60%), and they price the book as they feel. I published a children's book through Authorhouse and they priced it at $30 based on the specs, however I knew no one would buy a children's book that expensive but I had no say in that. The only way I could bring down the price is if I bought 2000 books for $14,000 which is a terrible deal across the board (again, those books aren't guaranteed to sell). I self published the book myself buying 500 for $2,500 and sold it at $17 and I kept all the profit.

    I hope this is helpful, all 3 has its pros and cons so choose wisely.
    David_Wu likes this.
  5. eProject

    eProject Member

    You can look online for publishers in your country. You then have to get somebody to proofread your work before you can consider publishing it. Talk to the publishers directly for the required fee before you can publish. You also need to know about copyrights and other legal procedures.
  6. Valerie Hart

    Valerie Hart MVP

    @FreelancingQueen have you published any children's books, yet? I would love to purchase them for my neighbors' children. I actually know of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, and it is a great place to start. They have a list of steps to take toward publishing here.

    If you're already published, what steps did you take to get there? Did you learn anything along the way? What was the hardest/easiest part of the process? Finally, where is your book being sold?
  7. David_Wu

    David_Wu Member

    Hi Valerie,

    I actually have to agree with Errol here. Self-publishing through a company like AuthorHouse (and other similar publishing companies such as Xlibris) can get you illustration services for your children's book. They could also provide editing, layout, PR and Marketing assistance - but any such add-on services are very expensive. They could put your work on Amazon, but this does not really guarantee book sales.

    I hear Amazon has a self-publishing tool of sorts that can be used for free. Through this, your work also gets published directly to Kindle. This would take time though, and you need to do everything here - formatting, layout, editing, not to mention marketing and etc (but you can hire people to do this for you).

    Other than that, there's always the traditional publishing route. You just need to send your manuscript to an established publishing house (such as Penguin for example), but this is a harder glass to break in because competition is stiff. However, I have heard that some authors managed to self-publish their work first, and when the book gained a bit of buzz or momentum, it becomes easier to pitch it to a traditional publishing company (sometimes, it's the publishers who will even come to make a deal with you).

    I hope this helps, and I wish you the best of luck for your book! :)
  8. Tamatha Yamasaki

    Tamatha Yamasaki Member

    Have you tried self-publishing through Amazon? I've never tried it but I've read people who've found success through it.
  9. Jason Oman

    Jason Oman Member

    Not sure how this will land... But, I found that it is really up to you, as the Author, to make the sales happen. But, there's more options for making that happen today, than there has ever been.

    Something that may work is to publish it as an eBook, as mentioned, and then start getting yourself out there and known on various Blogs, Forums, Discussion Groups, even Blog Talk Radio shows targetted to the best niche for your book. <== That right there is GOLD, by the way! (IE: Knowing WHO the specific target market/s are for your book.)

    Remember the Golden Rule of Marketing... Find A Need, & Fill It.

    So, find out where your most likely target buyers may be, and get yourself known there, as a starting point. Then, keep paying attention to what works to get positive replies, clicks to your site/book listing, questions about your book, and maybe even sales right from there.

    Repeat what works well, and keep tweaking and improving your actions/results.
    Hope that's helpful! :)

    Jason Oman
  10. Small to Feds

    Small to Feds MVP Member

    I have self-published 4 books through very economical web publishing companies that supply intellectual property protection, automatic posting to sales outlets and easy to use tools. Use the key words, "on-line self publishing" in any search engine and they will appear. I offer my books free at my web site as promotions and they are super marketing tools. You may wish to consider this avenue as a entry point to the business.
    djbaxter likes this.

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