To clarify, a beta reader is someone who provides feedback on a WIP (work in progress), helping an author refine and improve the story or flow of the message.
Beta readers can be invaluable in helping authors to identify holes, typos, and other issues that can be difficult to spot from the author’s own perspective. They can also provide valuable insight into how readers may react to the content, allowing authors to make changes before publishing.
When looking for beta readers, it is important to find people who are willing to provide honest feedback, and who are, ideally, the target reader for your book. After all, if your book is about how to feel less anxious day-to-day but you ask someone who has never felt a tinge of anxiety to be a beta reader, she likely won't be terribly interested in the content or able to provide the most valuable feedback.
*This is an excerpt from Elizabeth's latest book, Write the Damn Book Already: Tell Your Story, Share Your Message, Make Your Impact. Content may not be duplicated or redistributed without written permission from the author.
Hybrid publishing is a model whereby an author pays a publishing house to do the publishing legwork--including editing, cover design, interior formatting, and distribution channel setup--while retaining final say over the edits, title, cover design, interior layout, and retail price.
The cost to work with a hybrid publishing house is likely to fall somewhere between $1,500 and $50,000. I consider my publishing house, Finn-Phyllis Press, to be a hybrid publisher. Several of the bigger, more well-known traditional publishing houses offer a hybrid model: Hay House has Balboa Press, and Simon & Schuster has Archway Publishing.
Some publishing houses take no profit off sales, while others take 15 percent (or more). Some houses pay author...
Some are referring to big box bookstores like Barnes & Noble, some aspire to be carried by their favorite independent bookstore, and some dream of seeing their book in the book section of Target (just after purchasing their flat white latte to enjoy while excitedly putting 89 items they didn't come for into their cart).
The first question to answer isn't, "How do I get the book into bookstores?" (I can give you the how.) The first question is, "Will you even want to once you know how it all really works?"
It’s possible that you won’t meet a person who loves bookstores more than I do. Especially indie bookstores—my devotion to them runs deep.
When it comes to big chain bookstores (Barnes & Noble, Waterstones, etc.) or the book sections of big box stores (Target,...
The previous article in this series talked in greater detail about traditional book publishing---what it is as well as the pros and cons of the approach.
In this article, we'll dive into the second of three main forms of book publishing: independent publishing.
Independent publishers consist of both hybrid and vanity publishers (sometimes also referred to as indie publishers, small press publishers, or professional publishers). They make up the many publishing houses that are not part of a larger conglomerate and do not operate under a traditional model.
There are a lot of them---so many, in fact, that they make up nearly half the market share of the industry. Many of them operate wonderful businesses with integrity, yet far more do not. It’s therefore important to know what questions to ask and what red flags to be on the lookout for.
Hybrid publishing is a model whereby an author pays a publishing house to do the publishing...
Not all book-writing roadblocks are easy to clear.
(But some are easier than others.)
There's a saying: "Silence can be deafening?"
Now, I happen to love silence (having 5 kids will do that to a person).
But when it comes to writing, silence is NOT golden.
In fact, it's the enemy.
Silence puts me in my head, which isn't always where I need to be...especially when I'm writing from my heart.
The key for me to access the emotions that both want and need to be on the page is music.
As much as I love Eminem (and I do), that kind of music doesn't work.
The lyrics are simply too distracting.
And if I'm not careful, they stealthily enter my subconscious, and when I ultimately read back what I've written, I'm confused why, "mom's spaghetti" is mentioned when I exactly zero profound memories that involve my mom's spaghetti.
It occurred to me the other day that perhaps my playlist might help you to get into the zone and unearth the thoughts feelings...
"Just edit as you go," they say. "It will keep everything clean and save you tons of time on the back end."
I don't know who "they" are in this scenario, but they're wrong!
Have you declared (with lukewarm confidence) any of the following?
"As soon as I iron out the details of this chapter, I'll move on to the next."
"I'm just stuck on whether or not this metaphor makes sense."
"I'm trying to decide whether the content in chapter 2 makes sense; then I'll move on."
"Chapter 4 should perhaps be chapter 2 and chapter 3 should perhaps disappear altogether. As soon as I figure that out, I'll continue on."
While your intentions may be the best of the best, if you are editing (or strategizing chapter order, or debating content, or researching proper comma use) as you write, you are doing yourself a disservice. Here's why:
1. In 99.978% of cases, editing as you go (or telling yourself that you are) is a form of procrastination.
2. In the other .022% of cases, editing as you...
A great way to connect with your readers is to communicate with them about a product or service they will genuinely be thrilled to learn about (that relates to your book topic!).
For example, if you've written about managing anxiety, is there a meditation app you recommend?
If you've written a book about changing your lifestyle and nutrition habits, is there a meal prep service or mean planning product you recommend?
If you've written fiction, what hobbies does your main character engage in? Is there an online course related to learning that skill?
As promised in the last post, here is an actual email template from the email vault you get access to when you grab Email Templates for Book Marketing (Made Easy).
Email for Non-Fiction/Memoir Authors
Email Subject Line: A Resource You Will Love Knowing About!
Hi there, [FIRST NAME],
I so hope that [YOUR BOOK TITLE] has been helpful to you and has provided insights and tools that you can use to enhance your own...