Just Because You Can Self-Publish a Book Doesn’t Mean You Should

As the price barrier to book publishing lowers, too many books show up with too little quality

Just Because You Can Self-Publish a Book Doesn’t Mean You ShouldI just read a self-published book by a “NY Times Best-Selling Author.” I’ll let him remain anonymous. It was a short story anthology of “the best” short stories in a certain genre. I expected much and received little.

Perhaps I focus too much on flash fiction (short stories under 1,000 words). Possibly I read too many YA (young adult) books to appreciate writing that is more “serious.” It could be…  read more>>

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6 Reader Responses to Books

6 Reader Responses to BooksI read a lot of books, but I start more then I complete. Some books just aren’t worth finishing.

With so many books waiting for my attention, it makes no sense to waste time reading a book I’ve lost interest in.

Here are six reactions I have when I read a book… read more>>

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How Not to Write a Nonfiction Book

How Not to Write a Nonfiction BookA friend, who is also a prolific reader, once shocked me. Talking about nonfiction books, he said: “I only read the first chapter. Then I page through the rest and stop to read anything that’s interesting.”

My incredulous look encouraged him to explain. “Most nonfiction books pack their entire message into the first chapter. The rest of the book just rehashes it.” While some books warrant more reading… read more>>

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What I Learned By Researching Competitive Titles

What I Learned By Researching Competitive TitlesA common part in many book proposals is a “competitive works” section. I recently researched this for one of my book proposals. What I saw enlightened me.

First were three books from traditional publishers. They gave me pause. I had to think a bit to determine how my book was different and how it would stand out. This challenged me, but it was a good exercise. Each book was impressive…  read more>>

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Your Nonfiction Book is the Ultimate Business Card

If you are a consultant, service provider, or business professional, having a book can become your best form of promotion. A book provides instant credibility, elevating you above the competition who has no book. It becomes a calling card, opening doors and providing opportunities you would otherwise miss. Your book is the ultimate business card…  read more>>

What Do Readers Care About?

When readers consider our book, few will bother to look to see who published it. They won’t care if a major publisher, let alone any traditional publisher, produced it. When it comes to publishers, there is little brand loyalty, let alone much brand recognition. The imprint is of no consequence. How the printed book gets into their hands or the e-book gets into their reader doesn’t matter to them.

Here’s what does matter…  read more>>

What Can We Learn From the Used Textbook Market?

The August issue of Book Business had an interesting piece about the textbook industry. The article, “Combating the Higher-Ed Used Book Market,” said that of the $8 billion higher-ed textbook industry, roughly two thirds of the dollars spent is for used books. That’s bad news for the publishers and authors, as neither makes any money when students resell their textbooks.

There are many possible reasons for this, including high cost, books students don’t want in the first place or will never use again, required classes students don’t want to take, required books instructors don’t use, and so on. Another reason is some students must sell their book to help finance the next semester…  read more>>

Seven Things to Look For in a Beta Reader

Last week we talked about the importance of beta readers to give feedback on our books. I hope you’re as sold on the idea as I am.

The next step is finding beta readers – not just any one but the right ones. If we pick a beta reader who isn’t a good match, they could do more harm than good, both for our book and for our career. The ideal beta reader should…  read more>>