How to Get Published
So, you’ve just finished your manuscript. Now what? You must decide if you want to submit your writing to a publisher or self publisher; if you want a traditional publisher or an e-publisher; if you want to hire a literary agent or go it alone. There is much to consider and many steps between writing your piece and having it published.
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A literary agent is an agent who represents writers and their works to publishers, film producers, etc and assists in the sale and deal negotiation of the same. Literary agents most often represent novelists, screenwriters and major non-fiction writers. They are paid a fixed percentage (10 to 20%; although 15 % is usual) of the proceeds of sales they negotiate on behalf of their clients.
Writers turn to agents for several reasons:
1.Quite a few well-known, powerful, and lucrative publishing houses do not accept unpublished writers or those who are without an agent
2.A knowledgeable agent knows the market, and can be a source of valuable career advice and guidance.
3.Being a publishable author doesn’t automatically make you an expert on modern publishing contracts and practices. Many writers are more comfortable to have an agent handle such matters.
4.The writer’s relationship with his or her editor isn’t disrupted by disputes about royalty statements or late checks.
So do you need a literary agent? No.. but before deciding whether or not to hire one, think it over carefully. If you are not accustomed to handling contracts, royalties and marketing, you may want to consider finding an agent. A good web resource for finding a literary agent and other information for first time writers can be found at http://www.firstwriter.com/Agents/.
It’s hot! It’s new! It is said to be the wave of the future especially for new authors. E-publishing is short for electronic publishing, referring to a type of publishing that does not include printed books. E-publishing instead takes the format of works published online, on a compact disk, emailed, or provided in a file format compatible with handheld electronic readers. E-publishing is an alternate form of publication especially attractive to new writers. There are advantages and disadvantages to e-publishing over traditional printed books.
Some of the advantages are:
1.Faster publishing time for accepted manuscripts. While traditional publishers can take literally years before you see your work in print, E-publishers will generally publish manuscripts within a few months after acceptance.
2.Writers get a higher percentage of royalties because the initial financial costs for the publisher is much less than for a paper publisher
3.E-published books get an ISBN number just as paper publications and can be ordered in storefront bookstores and online as well.
4.E-publishing writers generally retain all rights to the work as an option to go to a paper publisher later.
5.Because of the e-formatting, slow moving books stay available much longer than paper books simply because storage is greater in an e-format venue.
There are some disadvantage as well however.
1.Currently, e-books sell far fewer books than standard paper books.
2.Writers are usually responsible for marketing their own work
3.Writers do not receive an advance as they do in traditional paper publishing
4.It is more difficult to protect your work from piracy than with paper productions
Though E-publishing does not currently carry the same credential building credit as paper publishing, it does provide an avenue to get your work out there. And, you can do both, publish the traditional method and e-publish as well.
There are various way to self publish your manuscript. One growing method is to use the assistance of one of a number of companies who specialize in just that. These companies offer, editing, art, layout, printing and binding services. Some will also register your manuscript and obtain an ISBN number and assist you with putting your book on online stores such as Amazon and Barnes and Noble.. There of course is a fee for these services. The fees range anywhere from $400- $3000. What you will have in the end however, is a very professional looking book. You are still responsible for marketing your work unless of course you hire that service out as well.
And finally, you can go through the steps of proof-reading and editing your own work(I suggest you have someone else proofread it, a second set of eyes will catch those little errors). A print shop can print and bind your work. You will need to have your work copywritten and an ISBN issued. At that point you can list it yourself on Amazon.com and other such online businesses. You will need to market it yourself. It is indeed a lot of work, long , tedious hours. But, it is not impossible.
In the end, whatever you choose, remember that publishing your work does not make you a writer. Writing comes from the heart and soul. True writers scribe because it is a passion not for the money, fame and fortune. Write because you love it and fortune shall follow.