Kim Weiss Publishing Services

My other life – weekend musical respite

March 7, 2010 at 9:19 am

jazzin' it up on a Friday night!

jazzin' it up on a Friday night!

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TGIF – Yes, I really said that!

March 5, 2010 at 7:58 am

How I feel today

How I feel today

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Fly on the wall: Getting a Book Published – When You Need Help To Figure Out How to Get a Book Published

March 2, 2010 at 10:29 am


As if writing wasn’t a lonely enough craft where you spend hours, months, years, perfecting your literary masterpiece. Or researching your report on the latest automobile glitches. Or transcribing your travel journal into a book worth publishing about your second home in Tuscany (lucky you!).

Hopefully, you have friends and colleagues who also write (books) and understand the parts of the process that are just plain stark and solitary. Maybe you’re lucky enough to have landed a place in a supportive and inspiring writer’s group and even enjoy a creating writing class or intensive from time to time with one of your mentors.

Then what? Do you have any idea what comes after the creative part of book writing when it’s time to offer up your piece of art to the world? Are you at all familiar with the publishing marketplace and what games are played there? Do you have any idea if what you’ve been writing will translate into a viable product that someone will want to read?

How would you know if you’ve been spending most of your time alone in your cozy little office with a cat curled around your feet noticing up close through your window the truth about the snow flake’s individuality. I’m sure some of these questions and others swim inside your head in between your spurts of creativity.

While you were day dreaming you might have watched a winter Olympics event or two on the telly and witnessed some athletic magnificence.  None of the Olympic athletes did it alone. With almost every winning photo-finish came a glimpse or an acknowledgment of that athlete’s coach. The analogy is a little extreme since their role is more constant in sports, but when a writer embarks on the territory of publishing their book, help from a coach is never a bad idea. Someone to educate you on what actually goes on in book publishing who can virtually hold your hand through the process.

It’s a big world out there. Scary big when it comes to the publishing industry. Which means you better come equipped with the best tools to attract attention. If you thought of yourself, your book, as a statistic, chances are you would bow out from the publishing game.

My advice: DON’T LOOK AT THE STATS!!  Too depressing. The numbers of books published each year are staggering.

And, if it wasn’t already hard enough to attract a publisher’s attention, you need to make a good impression when shopping for your literary agent. Once you accomplish that, you’ll have an advocate in your corner hired to do the heavy lifting of book deal making and protecting your interests along the way. Your agent will also act as your coach in the process of whipping your book and proposal into shape with professional help for the blessed day when you sign the contract with your publisher.

Or, you might even be thinking about going it on your own and publishing  your own book. (That’s a whole other kettle of fish!)

My point is, there are a lot of decisions to make, a lot more options to consider before you bring your product to market.  I suggest that you read all you can on the subject of writing book proposals, shopping for an agent,  identifying which publishers accept unsolicited manuscripts, and if your book is non-fiction, what subject matter is likely to land in the slush pile and which might not (accent on “might”).

There are many of us positioned to do the combination educating and hand holding that you might need on your publishing journey. Some of us work at publishers during regular business hours and bring real time experience to the consult, others work full time helping authors put their best book forward.

Writing to publish doesn’t have to be so lonely. In a lot of areas of our lives, we don’t think twice about getting help. The sports coach analogy is the most obvious but in many other ways we recruit experts. Most of us don’t prepare our own taxes without the help of a CPA, or make investment decisions without our stockbrokers (poor sods). Or color our hair or do our own pedicures without help.

The same goes for your book.  Analogies aside, I doubt if anything in  your life feels quite as precious as your book.

This is just an outstretched helping hand of compassion extended to you, brave author soul.

p.s. If you are writing a book (or have an unpublished manuscript or two in your files), then you need to know a few things before your writing will become a book, and your book becomes successful.  If you know those things, then you are one of the few who can get to the gold medal podium without a coach.  If you don’t know those things, then you, like 98% of the people in the world, need to ask for help.

My experience tells me that this is what every writer needs to know about how to get a book published, and how to make that published book successful – From Brainstorm to Bestseller.  If you don’t know all of those things, you’re either going to have to learn it all, or ask somebody who already knows.  I already know.  So if you’re ready for a coach to take you to the next level, I’m just an e-mail or phone call away.

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