A Look At The Book Publishing Process
Whether you’ve completed your manuscript or whether you’re just getting started writing a book, you may not be sure exactly how to get that book from your computer’s hard drive to getting it published, either as an ebook or self-published.
The book publishing process can be somewhat difficult to navigate, if you’re not familiar with how things go. If you’re thinking of publishing with the major publishing houses or smaller presses, here are several elements of the book publishing process with which you need to familiarize yourself.
Identifying Potential Publishers
The first step in getting your book published is to identify publishers who might be interested in publishing your book. You need to spend some time in this regard doing some market research.
Most publishers only publish books in a certain niche. Some publishers only accept submissions from agents. Some publishers don’t accept unsolicited submissions. Your goal here should be to find a dozen or more potential publishers that fit your type of writing and that accept submissions.
The Query Letter
A query letter is a short letter to the publisher that includes some vital information. The letter should include the title of the book, the genre, and the basic concept of the book. The query letter should identify the target market for the book, as well as a brief description of how this book is different from other books in the genre.
You can also provide a summary of ideas for a sequel to the book, as well as information about the length of your manuscript. The query letter will determine whether the publisher wants to pursue your book further, and whether you should submit a full manuscript.
Most publishers offer submission guidelines to prospective authors. These guidelines will indicate how the manuscript for your book is to be submitted, whether they require sample chapters along with your query letter, and even what style or genres of work they’re currently looking for.
Following these submission guidelines exactly will increase the chances that your proposal isn’t just tossed aside.
Rejection and Acceptance
The next phase of the book publishing process is the decision. The publisher will decide whether they’re interested in your book or not.
If they are not interested, you can submit the proposal to another publisher.
If they are interested, they will begin the process of negotiating a fee and working with you on the next steps, such as editing and promotion of your book.
Publishing and Promotion
Depending on the publisher, you may be asked to participate in promotional events for your book, such as book signings or other events. The actual publication of your book might take place soon after the editing process is complete, or it may happen months or even years later, again depending on the publisher.
As you can imagine, there are specific challenges you’ll face at each stage of the game. Arming yourself with as much information as possible will increase your chances of overcoming those challenges.