Determining the Goal.
Spend some time determining your goals. Take a notepad and write, in short phrases, the type of person you want to reach with your book. Take that list and invite a few honest and trusted associates to coffee, and ask them for their unbiased opinion regarding your book concept. Ask for additional goals that they think you should consider.
Laying the Groundwork.
Research a lot. The internet has made research easy, and the more you know and firm up your knowledge, the better and more relevant your book will be. You’ll have a large file of printed references by the time you’re done, so be sure to file your research papers in an easy-to-retrieve method. The U.S. Copyright Office states that short quotes of copyrighted material isn’t a violation of copyright laws, but if you wish to quote an article at length (in our opinion, more than two sentences), be sure to obtain reprinting permission. Determine the main point of each chapter, and organize your chapter ideas in chronological order, develop chapter titles, and reevaluate them again after the book is written.
Writing the Message in Your Heart.
Determine when you’ll spend time writing, and do it! Like any other work, there will be interfering tasks at hand, but be as dedicated as you were when you started -- don’t lose sight of the vision.
Write each paragraph with a goal in mind. Each paragraph needs to fit under the main chapter topic and needs to have a purpose. And use stories. Jesus was a wonderful storyteller, and by doing so He gave great illustrations that were far better than simply stating the truth. A story sticks with the person for a long time.
Don’t do it yourself and only use experienced editors! Large publishing houses edit even a great author’s book up to six times, using a different editor each time. Entry-level publishing houses will usually charge a substantial fee for editing. Regardless, a professional will do a great job revising your book and will strengthen all aspects, including flow, relevance, pacing, sentence structure, dialogue, and more. The editor will help you address weaknesses that might diminish reader satisfaction.
As with editing, have a professional do all proofreading. Large publishing houses proofread a book up to nine times. The only proofing entry-level publishing houses do is electronic spellchecking. It’s important to use high-quality computer proofing software in addition to printing a book and having it professionally proofread. (Reading a book on a computer screen isn’t nearly as effective as proofreading on printed paper.)
Finding a Publisher.
You may have heard of publishers paying 100% royalty rates. While that sounds great on the surface, the reality is that this means a publisher is in business to put your book in print, not to help you sell your book (vanity publishers). Be sure to choose a publisher that is going to work with you on a continual basis as part of the publishing package.
Promoting Your Book.
Large publishing houses admit that advertising is not effective for selling books, but rather that it promotes the publisher by advertising the fact that the publisher has the honor of working with a specific, well-known author. Always remember: people buy from people they like and trust, and direct marketing and word of mouth is what will ultimately sell your book, provided that your book is relevant, edited, and thoroughly proofread. If you practice direct marketing your well-written book (speaking, social media, and more), your readers will tell others (viral marketing). Readers, if leveraged, are your most powerful marketing tool.
In the publishing realm, our company is somewhere between the entry level and the large publishing houses. We incorporated Launch! because we discovered we could provide professional publishing services at no greater cost than is charged by entry-level publishing houses. Even if you choose our Genesis publishing package, we care about the message in your book. Through our distribution experience, we’ve learned a thing or two, and will freely share as much as possible to help you with the publishing and promotion of your book. If you have a book to publish, or are just thinking about it, please call us. We would love to discuss this article and your book ideas.
LIFE SENTENCE Publishing
P.O. Box 652
Abbotsford, WI 54405