I recently penned an article for Writer’s Digest about what the publishing industry is really like for the editors and publishers on the inside. You can read the article at WritersDigest.com here:
I meet with and talk to first-time authors regularly and many of them often eventually work their way around to some version of this question over the course of our conversation:
So… like… what kind of advance should I expect?
Writers and authors hoping to make publishing a part of their life’s work must know about royalties and how they work. Yes, maybe you have a literary agent, or a spouse who is an accountant, but still, it's important to know what you're getting into. So I’m going to share a brief overview of royalties, what they are, and some of what you might expect to see in a variety of book deals today.
Let’s begin with the basics: What are royalties?
Every writer faces the climb that is writing his or her book. However, once that hard work is done, there are other steep mountains on the horizon. Those might include: finding a literary agent, signing with a reputable publisher, building an online presence, marketing your book, doing interviews about the book, creating a social media following, and much more.
If you’ve just finished your great American novel, your manifesto about business negotiation, or your nonfiction self-help book about improving self-esteem—and if you have a manuscript sitting on your hard drive ready for the world to read—it's probably time to master the art of the query letter.
Whatever the premise, you’re writing a book. You want to share something with the world. An idea. A story. You’ve outlined the concept, or written the entire thing, beginning to end—either way, what now? Creating a compelling book proposal is your first step to getting your book to the right publisher.