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Pitch Your Book So That Publishers Pay Attention

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In today's crowded book publishing market, what does it take to draw the attention of the right literary agent or publisher? This presentation for the Writers Mill group at Cedar Mill Community Library walks through how to evaluate their work from an outsiders' perspective, identify the right agents and publishers, and then make the pitch that will get their attention...and hopefully a contract.

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Pitch Your Book So That Publishers Pay Attention

  1. 1.  Working with professionals who know how to make and distribute a book  Financial investment to turn an idea into a product  Better access to brick and mortar bookstores  Marketing support
  2. 2. 2017: 304,912 books traditionally published
  3. 3. You’re applying for the same job as 10,000 other people
  4. 4.  What draws them to your book?  What questions are they asking?  What are they reading right now?
  5. 5. Science fiction Memoir Self Help Action Romance Poetry History Health Picture Fantasy Travel Thriller Spirituality Art Young Adult Essay
  6. 6. In one sentence: What makes this book different? Goal: “Tell me MORE!”
  7. 7.  Premise?  Time?  Setting?  Contrast?  Title?  Solution?
  8. 8. What will the reader get from this book?
  9. 9.  Previous publications  Professional credentials  Endorsements  Awards  Education  Membership  Existing audience
  10. 10. 1. You need a literary agent
  11. 11. 1. You need a literary agent 2. Their focus is on the bottom line
  12. 12. 1. You need a literary agent 2. Their focus is on the bottom line 3. They’ll want to know about your platform
  13. 13. 1. You need a literary agent 2. Their focus is on the bottom line 3. They’ll want to know about your platform 4. They move slowly
  14. 14. 1. You need a literary agent 2. Their focus is on the bottom line 3. They’ll want to know about your platform 4. They move slowly 5. They are very low risk
  15. 15. 1. Agents are not always required
  16. 16. 1. Agents are not always required 2. Financially, they work like the big presses
  17. 17. 1. Agents are not always required 2. Financially, they work like the big presses 3. Often focus on specialty audiences, smaller sales channels
  18. 18. 1. Agents are not always required 2. Financially, they work like the big presses 3. Often focus on specialty audiences, smaller sales channels 4. Open to higher risk
  19. 19.  Look at comparable titles
  20. 20.  Look at comparable titles  Go to conferences
  21. 21.  Look at comparable titles  Go to conferences  Pay attention to deal reports
  22. 22.  Look at comparable titles  Go to conferences  Pay attention to deal reports  Use databases
  23. 23. “What’s your book about?”
  24. 24. 1. Genre
  25. 25. 1. Genre 2. The Hook
  26. 26. 1. Genre 2. The hook 3. What sets the book in motion
  27. 27. 1. Genre 2. The hook 3. What sets the book in motion 4. Comparisons or audience
  28. 28. 1. Genre 2. The hook 3. What sets the book in motion 4. Comparisons or audience 5. About you
  29. 29. Dear Agent…
  30. 30.  Is it a good idea?  Are you the right author?  Is this the right time?  Why is this the right publisher/agent?
  31. 31.  Why them?  Hook and short description of the book  Why now?  Author bio: why are you qualified?  Logistics: word count, status, genre
  32. 32.  Title  One line (the hook)  Short description (cover copy)  Synopsis  Sample chapters
  33. 33.  Author bio  Platform information  Marketing plan (optional)
  34. 34.  The audience  Comparative titles  Trends and culture (optional)
  35. 35. http://bethjusino.com (Click Resources for a link to this slideshow) bethjusino@gmail.com Please sign up for my mailing list! Most photos in this slideshow courtesy of Unsplash: https://unsplash.com/

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