Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Help for that Horrid, Frightful Cover/Query Letter

       Usually the first thing an agent, editor, or publisher sees from a writer is a cover letter or query letter. I hear so often, "But how do I write a good cover letter?" I hope to help unravel the mystery.

Sample Cover Letter with Suggestions

           *** The following cover letter is one I would send with a copy of my short story, "Hidden Lies" to an agent. Addresses, phone numbers, and names used (except for my name and email address) are not real. Any information between double asterisks (**) are not part of the letter but information about what goes in that place in the letter.
         For this sample, I've used the block format; however, I usually use a format with the inside return address in the upper right hand corner, with paragraphs indented, and with the closing in line with the inside address, on the right side.***

2912 My Street

My Town, State zipcode
April 13, 2006

John Johns **Use name of editor or agent for genre and item, even call company to ask.**

Johns Literary Agency
Mailing address
Sometown, Somestate zip

Dear Mr. Johns: **If person is a woman, use Ms. unless you know differently.**

Life has many conflicts, and relationships aren’t always as the members involved believe. The enclosed short story “Hidden Lies” reveals that members of the same family don’t always know the “skeletons” hidden in the family “closet.” In fact, none ever viewed a freezer in the same way again.

As a teacher of English and composition for twenty-five years, I not only taught writing, but also studied and honed my own skills. From 1974 through 1977, I had short stories, articles, and poetry published in Potpourri magazine. Later years, articles and short stories appeared in regional publications, in the Teachers of English anthology Teachers Write, and in Standard magazine. More current information may be found on my web site,

Thank you for considering my short story. I will await a decision at your earliest convenience. You may also reach me by phone, 405-555-1411, or by email, Enclosed is a SASE for your use.


(signature here)

Vivian Gilbert Zabel

2 enclosures:

Manuscript: “Hidden Lies”

* * * Notes about cover letter * * *

1. Author’s address and current date goes in upper left hand corner (if using block letter) or upper right hand corner. The author’s email address may go under date.
2. The inside address for the publisher, agent, or publisher goes next, using the name of the person who should get the manuscript according to the type of writing and genre. Call the company or agency and ask for the correct editor or agent if necessary.
3. Address the person by Mr. or Ms. (unless you know the woman prefers Miss or Mrs.) and his or her last name. Do NOT address the person by a first name unless you already know him or her extremely well.
4. The first paragraph should get the attention of the editor or agent as well as informing him of the material you are sending and a bit about the story. Do not go into great depth.
5. The next paragraph should give only a small amount of biographical information and only that which is related to closely to what you are submitting or your expertise. I included that I taught and learned more about writing while teaching, which gives support for me as a writer. Then I gave information about my published work and my website address, so if the agent/editor wants more information, she can find it. Do not falsify anything.
         If you have clips (news releases or clippings) and have them on a website, be sure to include that information. For example, I am in the process of scanning and adding clips to my website.
6. Do not over praise yourself or your writing, complain about anyone else’s not accepting it, or give your friends’ opinions. At the same time don’t belittle yourself or your work.
7. Finally, thanking the person for taking time to consider submitted material is good manners. Notice that I don’t set a deadline but let the agent know I will be waiting for his decision. I also include other ways he can reach me: phone number and email address. I let him know that I have enclosed a Self Addressed Stamped (with enough postage to return the material to me) Envelope (which is large enough to hold the material) - better known as SASE. However, an electronic submission doesn't require an SASE. Be sure to follow the submission guidelines.
8. Then add a list of enclosures after the signature area. For an electronic submission, give a list of attachments.          

        IMPORTANT NOTE: Even one misspelled word, grammar error, or confusing passage would result in an agent or editor returning the manuscript or throwing the material away if no SASE were enclosed, or deleting the information if the submission is electronic.        
        If the letter is boring or contains any errors, agents and editors will often not read more than the first paragraph. The submitted material would then never be read.          
        If the cover letter is written well enough to attract the agent's or editor's attention, then the author must keep that attention throughout the manuscript - which contains NO errors.          
        I cannot stress that idea enough: Spelling, grammar, and other errors will destroy any chance of an item being accepted by an agent or editor. This idea is not my opinion but is stressed over and over by editors, agents, and other writing experts.          
        Hopefully, the above information will help writers fear a cover/query letter less.

Using Writing Prompts

by Katie Hines

I feel rather dry today. Uninspired. No verbosity from this writer. Maybe it's because I stayed up all night last night thinking about all my works-in-progress. Not much progress, though. I think I need to find some inspiration. One thing I've done in the past that works, is to write something based on a prompt. You can google "writing prompts" and get a wealth of information and prompts that way.

i first came across writing prompts when I was doing my crash course on writing fiction. There really are actual websites that are devoted to writing prompts. One gal has written a book with writing prompts listed. Try this site - it has over 300.

I've always kind of pooh-poohed the idea of using prompts, but sometimes, that's just what it takes to get started. I don't necessarily have to write with the idea that I'm going to use in whatever work-in-progress (WIP) I'm currently concentrating on. The idea is to get my muse up from its nap and start those creative juices flowing.

For example, one writing prompt may be to write about what you had for dinner the night before and how you prepared it. Dull? Probably. Dry and boring? Most likely. Gets the, ah, juices flowing. Yes! Now, am I going to incorporate that dinner in my WIP? No, not really. But, in one sense it gets incorporated into what I'm writing by virtue of getting my muse flowing.

But writing prompts don't have to be boring. Brian Klems has posted a great prompt called "Undercover at Bingo." It's about being a spy, and is funny and creative, and gets you thinking in a different manner than you would normally. And, it's fun! Give it your best shot...allow yourself to become inspired.

So, if you're dry and have lost your muse, try a writing prompt. See if you can't get up and writing again...allow yourself to get inspired!

Katie Hines is author of "Guardian" published by 4RV Publishing.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Marketing Tip: Having a Good Internet Presence

By: Stephanie Burkhart

If you rely on the Internet for most of your networking/social media/ marketing endeavors, then it's important to establish a good Internet presence.

A couple of things to consider:

When requesting blog interviews, guest visits, don't demand, ask. If you can, offer an exchange. Use a calendar to keep track of your commitments.

Be timely. If you're running a contest, or returning material (a guest blog, edit, etc.,) be on time. If you're going to be late due to real life commitments, send an email.

Be polite. Manners go a long way. Please, thank you, and you're welcome help demonstrate honesty and sincerity.

Update often. Keep people informed and up to date. Readers look forward to contests, trivia challenges, reviews, etc.

Be classy. I know our stories are our "babies," so when we get a review that's a bit critical, the classy thing to do is simply not reply at all, or if you must, a simple thank would suffice. If you argue or negatively engage a reader, it's usually you who looks bad.

Be organized. Try to budget a certain amount of time each day to marketing be it 30 minutes, 1 hours, but no more than 2 hours. (you still have to write, after all) Update your website, newsletter, facebook, emails, look for new review sites, etc., I like to use a calendar, but some use Excel, or develop their own system to keep track of their endeavors.

I'd love to hear your thoughts/tips on establishing a good Internet presence. For me, since I'm not face-to-face, it's important to show off my personality in a good light so I always try to be courteous. People can't tell the way you mean something on the Internet because they can't see your facial expressions or hear the tone/inflection of your voice, so words carry a lot of weight.

Stephanie Burkhart is a 911 Dispatcher for LAPD. Her 4RV Books include The Giving Meadow and First Flag of New Hampshire. She's married with two young sons.








Thursday, August 23, 2012

Promotion: Review of Gunther the Underwater Elephant

Posted by Vivian Zabel  copied from Christian Children Authors


Gunther the Underwater Elephant

Rating: :) :) :) :) :)
The cover of this book caught my eye – a darling baby elephant floating along in the current, his trunk reaching skyward like a snorkel. That’s just how little Gunther looked as he unwittingly sailed away on a grand adventure.

This book will be a delight for parents, teachers, and librarians to share at story time. Not only will children love the illustrations of brightly colored sea creatures and expressive elephants, but the story has depth that encourages questions and discussions.

Gunther’s tale shows children that things they do can have big consequences. The story also illustrates how youngsters can use creativity and quick thinking to help others. Gunther the Underwater Elephant is heartwarming and fun – with a surprise ending that made me laugh out loud. Five smiles for Gunther!

P.S. You can order this book from the publisher at several dollars less than the suggested retail price.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Writing a Memoir - 5 Rules

Writing a memoir is different things to different people. Some people are looking for closure, or a cathartic release from a traumatic event in their lives, others simply want to share their experiences with readers.

Whatever the reason behind writing a memoir, there are a few rules that should be adhered to.

5 Rules to Writing a Memoir:

1. Know what you want to convey to the reader. Know why you’re writing a memoir and let the reader in on what to expect. This will help give your story direction and focus – it will provide a basis for it to move forward.

2. Decide on what format you will write your memoir, but keep in mind that trying to stick to a purely chronological order can cause a problem with the flow of the story. One possible alternative is to divide the story into specific topics within the overall subject (your life), possibly childhood, education, marriage, family, or other topics important to the story.

The idea is to realize you have options. You might try brainstorming some alternative memoir formats. You can also do some research by reading memoirs by traditional publishers; go to your library and ask the librarian to offer some suggestions. Finding ones that are recently published will be helpful; you need to know what the current market is looking for.

Another aspect of structure that needs to be addressed is how you speak to the reader. In an article at titled “5 Ways to Start Your Memoir on the Right Foot” by Steve Zousmer, it says, “Is the conversation external or internal? That is, is writing your book the equivalent of sitting down in your living room and telling a small group of people the story of your life (external), or are you having an internal conversation with yourself while allowing readers to listen in?”

3. Whether you’re writing a mystery, a romance, or a memoir, you need to hook the reader. Again, read other memoirs for some examples and ideas.

As a former accountant who now writes, if writing my memoir, a possible beginning might be, “From the pencil to the pen.” This possibly has the potential to arouse enough curiosity to hook the reader.

Your experience and story is unique, try to come up with something that reflects that.

4. Don’t let your memoir be a platform to get even with those who you perceive have harmed you in the past. You may feel good about venting, but your readers won’t. This will turn off agents, publishers, and readers. Remember, your memoir should be to entertain, enlighten, help, instruct, uplift, motivate, inform, or encourage your readers; it shouldn’t be all about you and your vendetta.

5. As with any form of writing, the bare bottom basic is to have a proofread and edited manuscript. Even if you intend to have your manuscript professionally edited, you need to know the basics of writing. This aspect of writing entails effort – effort to learn the craft of writing, including revisions, proofing, and editing.

If you are having your manuscript professionally edited, the editor will expect to be given a relatively polished manuscript to work on. Unless of course, you’re having the memoir ghostwritten, in which case you and the ghostwriter will determine what shape, if any, your manuscript needs to be in.

But, assuming you’re doing it on your own, at the very least you need to be part of a critique group, a non-fiction writing group or one specifically for memoirs. A critique group will help you hone your craft and will spot a number of problems within your manuscript that you will not be able to find on your own. And, be sure the critique group you choose has experienced and published authors, along with new writers.

So many new writers don’t think this aspect of writing a memoir applies to them. Or, they just don’t want to put the time and effort into learning the craft of writing. But, if you intend to submit your manuscript to traditional publishers, or if you are self-publishing, having a polished manuscript is a must. It’s a reflection of you and your writing ability, and will be a factor in how readers view your book.

Writing a Memoir Possibilities

If all the elements and rules of writing a memoir are applied, and your particular story offers unique insights, has a universal theme, has a one or two sentence WOW elevator pitch, is memorable or provocative, it may have the potential to soar.

Memoirs that have gone above and beyond include:

“Eat, Pray, Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert
“Julie and Julia” by Julie Powell
“Marley and Me” by John Grogan

To keep up with writing and marketing information, along with Free webinars - signup for The Writing World newsletter - click on the link or go to: (opt-in is on the right top sidebar).

Karen Cioffi
Multi-award Winning Author, Freelance/Ghostwriter, Editor, Marketer
Writer’s Digest Website of the Week, June 25, 2012

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

How to Give a Good Manuscript Critique

"How to Give a Good Manuscript Critique" by Joan Y. Edwards 

How can you give a good manuscript critique? When you critique a manuscript, you want to do a good job. You want the writer to be able to tell easily what you think. You want to give them both ways to correct and ways to enhance the manuscript. Here are ways to insure you give a good critique.
When you critique a manuscript, make your notes stand out:

Highlight at least three Blue Ribbon passages.
Highlight areas to delete in yellow.
Use a different color font from the one the writer used.
Use all caps. 
Punctuation and grammar errors.
Note where writer needs to show, not tell.
Cross out words to delete like this.
Write questions in the manuscript when you think of them.
Or do your own thing. Be creative.

Write the following questions at the beginning of the manuscript you're about to critique. It will help you focus on the story's strengths, as well as give the author places that need enrichment. If you're the author, ask yourself the questions about one of your own manuscripts.

22 Questions for a Critique

After reading a manuscript, answer these questions.
  1.  Do you know what main character wants?
  2. What was he willing to do to get it?
  3. What kept the main character from getting what he wanted?
  4. Does he get what he wants? How?
  5. What are the mistakes that the main character makes?
  6. What are his flaws? (He’s got to have flaws.)
  7. What is the lowest point in the story?
  8. Did the main character change? How?
  9.  What does the main character learn about life from his experiences in this story?
  10. Do you know what each main character wants?
  11. Does each main character a distinct voice of his own?
  12. Can you tell when a different character is talking?
  13. What do you want to know that the writer is not telling you?
  14. Does it make sense? If not, note in the manuscript which parts that don’t make sense.
  15. Does the main character face his conflict or run away?
  16. Does the main character save himself by human means or is he saved with unbelievable circumstances that seems like magic?
  17. Did you mark where writer needs to show, don't tell.
  18. Can you write a short summary of the story? Do it.
  19. What are three main errors main punctuation and grammar errors for the author to correct?
  20. What are three Blue Ribbon passages?  
  21. What questions come to mind as you read the manuscript?
  22. After reading the story, can you write a short (25-100 word) summary. Do so.

I wish you great success in your writing career. Thanks for reading this blog post. I am honored by your presence here. Please leave a message in the comment area. I'd love to hear your ideas on how to give a good critique.

Never Give Up!
Joan Y. Edwards

Coming from 4RV Publishing in June 2015: Joan's Elder Care Guide

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Sometimes less is so much more when it comes to your book's cover.

by Aidana WillowRaven

In both my freelance experience and experience as art director for 4RV Publishing, I've noticed a disturbing trend. For some reason, authors try to cram as much visual stimuli as possible in their cover, every last detail based on the words they so carefully orchestrated.

When it came to creating the cover for Journey of the Cheyenne Warrior, I had several visually full scenes to work with. So why did I choose to go with such a seemingly simple composition?

The simple answer ... Invoking a feeling and a mood can often have a stronger impact than over stimulating the eyes with loads and loads of details.

Having said that, it took a lot more work to make it look simple than one would think ... lol.

Of course, a certain amount of artistic license was used. For example, in the book, the MCs hair was braided most of the time. I left my interpretation free flowing. Why? Two reasons: One, I think long hair on men is sexy as do most female readers. Does the name Fabio mean anything to you? Even non-romance novel readers should recognize him as the male model used most on book covers of the genre ... him and his famous locks. So I think you can guess that strategic marketing visual was the second part.

Also, as far as I know, there is no multicolored mist described at anytime. But there is a vision quest. How do you represent a dream or vision pictorially? I went with layers and layers of mist ... lol.

Lastly, I have not read the novel, it's still in editing, but I still wanted to give our warrior a warrior's weapon. I chose a bow.

Even the pose was part of the story. A strong stance, contemplative and at the ready. So 'simple' wasn't really simple ... lol. But I do think it's a more powerful cover, embodying the overall mood of the story, than if I had chosen to recreate a scene from the book.

In closing, I thought you might like to read the blurb ...

Brave Eagle grows to manhood amid the constant changes and turmoil on the Plains. Now, in a world full of choices, Brave Eagle must make many decisions, some for his very survival. This was a time of exploration, discovery, and settlement in the West, intervention and treaties with the U. S. Government, leadership issues between the peace chief Black Kettle and the war leader Roman Nose, the Dog Soldiers, the Sand Creek Massacre, the Massacre at Washita. Was Brave Eagle to be a man of war or a man of peace? Was he to be a fierce frightening warrior or a wise peacemaker?  Could he learn to adapt to the white man’s world, or would he be able to hold on to the rich traditions of the grandfathers?             

In the middle 1800’s, the white man’s world collides with the world of the Native Americans. How would this affect the people of the Plains? Where would this life journey take Brave Eagle?

Do you fell less is more when it comes to cover art or do you prefer complex cover scenes? free polls 

Art Director & VP of Operations

Friday, August 10, 2012

4RV Book Launch at Kansas Book Festival

by Vivian Zabel 

     4RV Publishing will have a booth at the Kansas Book Festival September 15, and many titles will be on display and for sale. However, two new releases will be launched. The authors will travel from Canada and Texas for the launch of their books and other authors will attend from Texas and Oklahoma to autograph and promote their books. A top 4RV editor will also attend. Of course we welcome all authors, editors, staff, and readers to visit us in Topeka on the lawn of the Kansas History Museum, 6425 SW 6th Avenue.

  Coming from Ontario, Melanie Robertson-King, author of A Shadow in the Past, will attend the festival to launch her young adult novel. Also attending is the lead editor for the novel, Carla Ralston from North Dakota. The blurb from the novel reads:
    Nineteen-year-old Sarah Shand finds herself thrust back into the past. There she struggles to keep her real identity from a scociety that finds her comments and ideas strange and her speech and actions forward, unlike Victorian women.
     When Sarah verbally confronts confining social practices, including arranged marriages, powerful enemies commit her to a lunatic asylum.
      After falling in love with the handsome Laird of Weetshill, Robert Robertson, she must decide whether to find her way back to her own time or to remain in the past with him.



     Traveling from Texas to help launch her new young adult novel, Janet K. Brown will promote Victoria and the Ghost. From the back of her novel comes the following blurb:
     At fifteen, Victoria, a city girl, loses her mother's love and tries to cope with country isolation, no friends, and no one who cares, until she meets a ghost.

    Both novels and other 4RV books can be found through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and brick and mortar stores, as well as the 4RV Bookstore.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Turn Up the Heat and Win BIG

Turn Up the Heat
                                                                                                                                                                     By Suzanne Cordatos

One of the best ways to spend a summer afternoon is watching a sailing regatta. Lovely and peaceful, there is nothing quite like a fleet of colorful spinnakers billowing over sunlit waves, cool breezes kicking through the summer heat. As a bonus, no engine noises mar the view.
If you tally up the bruises afterward, participating in a race might be more akin to tackle football. My brother-in-law returned from two E-Scow regattas in one week proclaiming “My bruises got bruises!” With a wide smile, this sailor showed off his thighs streaked with multiple marks in shades of purple. Beaten up by a boom, apparently.
This sailor’s pride in accomplishment got me thinking as a writer.  Main characters need “bruises on their bruises” to bring their challenge to a satisfying conclusion.

     Are you too easy on your characters?
Beginning writers tend to love their characters too much and hesitate making their situations awful. Readers identify with characters and live through them: How would that character deal with something that, in real life, would be too scary to face?  
Real writing fun starts when you dig holes deep enough to make your characters show their stuff. From the first pages, plant seeds—personal qualities—that will eventually help him or her save the day. One of my main characters wants to learn how to whistle just like her father. She works hard at it, puckering over and over. Perhaps your character has an uncanny ability to communicate with animals or throw his voice. A girl’s hair-braiding skills can be employed to rope-weaving. That whistle turns into a life-saving signal in the book’s climax.
No matter how outrageous the situation, your characters’ challenges will be met in a way that is believable if you have planted the seeds to their success early on. Your readers will root for him or her to jump figurative or literal chasms.

  Is your villain nasty enough? Has he/she/it gone soft?
Think of any villain you love to hate. My current favorites are the actors on ABC’s Once Upon a Time series. Lana Parilla plays Snow White’s Evil Queen. Her colleague, Robert Carlyle, plays a delightfully devious Rumpelstiltskin.  Both seek to fulfill their own agendas at any cost. Sparingly, authors can use superlatives to add weight. If Voldemort was merely trying to give Harry Potter a bad day once in a while would his triumphant end be worth reading thousands of pages? As the darkest wizard in generations, with a name people feared to speak, Voldemort was a worthy opponent for the good vs. evil quest.

Your readers deserve the smartest hero or heroine (even if they don't start out that way) and the toughest nemesis you can dream up. Well-earned victory over a true villain makes it worth the effort to bang up your character with a boom. 
Pile on bruises on the bruises! 
Your readers will forgive you—and enjoy the ride.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Book Marketing Strategy: Blog Commenting and Sharing Posts

Book Marketing Strategy - Blog Commenting and Sharing Posts 

By Karen Cioffi

As manager of a marketing group I'm always on the outlook for ways to generate and increase visibility, readership, and subscribers . . . and increase traffic. I find it interesting that people in general don't seem to get some of the very simple marketing strategies they can use to increase their own visibility and that of others at the same time.

One of the simplest marketing strategies to use is commenting on blogs, quality blogs in particular, and sharing those blog posts through all available clickable social networks.

Many writers/authors don't realize that when you comment the relevant comment, you may very well draw traffic.

Aside from the search engine visibility aspect of commenting on blog posts and sharing them, this strategy establishes connections.

By clicking on a blog's SHARE links, you form a connection with that blogger. Since, the majority of bloggers pay attention to who's commenting on their sites that blogger will actually see YOU, thereby forming a connection.

Tip about the service you're using to leave that comment: Always make sure you add your name and website address when applicable. If you're using Blogger, be sure to complete your Blogger profile information, which should include your links.

While this may take a couple of minutes to initially set up, it's more than worth it, because each time you comment your name and link are visible and usually clickable.

Also, by sharing informative, interesting, or entertaining posts, you provide a service to those who follow, friend, or connect with you. This simple act creates a relationship between you and your followers or connections, establishing you as a source of information, and if it's informative content you're sharing, you'll enhance your expert status. And, building your expert status or authority is a key element to building traffic and subscribers.

According to an article in, "Social Signals and SEO: Focus on Authority," it's all about "building your own audience and establishing your own authority."

Some of the most popular sources to share information are: Twitter, Facebook, GoolePlus, Linkedin, StumbleUpon, Digg, and Technorati. If you know of others, please share!

As an interesting side note: A StatCounter Global Stats report shows StumbleUpon as the top social media site in the U.S. from August to September 2011.

Okay, back on track.

As the website or blogsite owner it's your responsibility to have SHARE buttons in place. If they're not in place, a visitor to your site can't share the post. Adding SHARE buttons is a simple task with content management tools, like Wordpress and Blogger. 

In Blogger, just scroll down the Gadgets list in Design and find a SHARE gadget.  In your WordPress’ Dashboard go to Plugins, Add New, then do a search for SHARE plugins and find one that you like.

A newer element and ‘marketing plus’ of Sharing is that with Google Penquin, ‘shareability’ is now a key element of ranking.

So, to increase your own visibility and help your fellow writers/authors/bloggers, SHARE those posts you read. Even if you don't have the minute it takes to type a relevant comment - CLICK ON THOSE SHARE BUTTONS!

To keep up with writing and marketing information, along with Free webinars - signup for The Writing World newsletter by clicking on the link or going to: (the right top sidebar opt-in).

Karen CioffiMulti-award Winning Author, Freelance/Ghostwriter, Editor, Marketer
Writer’s Digest Website of the Week, June 25, 2012

Friday, August 3, 2012

Interview with author and publisher Vivian Zabel

        Vivian Zabel, award-winning author and the president of 4RV Publishing, will be one of the workshop presenters and speakers at the Alaska Writing Conference September 7 - 9. Basil Sands, Sandman Production Studios of Alaska, interviewed Vivian by phone the afternoon of August 1, in preparation of the conference.

          The question and answer period appeared more like a conversation between two writers than an interview, as the two discussed what part of the writing life was the favorite part, motivation for writing and continuing to write, the future of the publishing industry, and advice for aspiring writers. 

          The interview can be heard on any media player: Interview of Vivian Zabel by Basil Sands. Hope you enjoy the interview and that you might better know Vivian Zabel.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Why is it hard to publish your book?

First, as a writer you are competing against roughly 99,999 other writers trying to publish their book per year.

Second, traditional publishers tend to look at self-published, vanity published, or published online less as writers than writers in highly rated magazines, or published traditionally.

Third, traditional publishers expect writers to have a marketing plan, followers, a PR plan, and a promotional plan for their book.

Forth, traditional publishers want to know about how writers will use social media marketing, and network marketing to garner interest in their book.

Fifth, traditional publishers might like the writer to have a blog, book trailer, and web site for the book as well before the writer completes the book so there is a ready-made audience before publishing the book.

Sixth, publishers want a book with few errors needing editing. These errors include, grammar, spelling, punctuation, and typos. Traditional publishers are looking for ready to print manuscripts. They don’t want to spend time and money, correcting manuscripts in today’s publishing culture.

Seventh, is a good deal of luck with the right genre, homework, and the publisher willing to chance publishing your book, and a ready-made audience and a large number of followers.
This is the hardest part of publishing, especially for new writers if their name is not a household name like, James Patterson.

Eighth, reading the submission guidelines carefully. What potential publishers are looking for as to the type of genre they publish. You’d be surprised how many publishers receive the wrong material.

Ninth, the proposal letter. If a writer’s proposal letter doesn’t show writing ability, the manuscript may never reach a reader, because of the number of manuscripts received in a year and the time it takes to read a manuscript by an acquisitions editor to see if the book is worthy of publication.

From this partial list, it’s easy to why it is hard publishing your book. Read articles from editors and reviewers online and you will read many complaints about the quality of self-published books, vanity published book, and more about the lack of quality writing.

Writers need to take responsibility for the quality of their babies to ensure they are the best book possible to help in publishing them so readers will ready quality writing, thus insuring they will want to read the writer when their next book is available.

Robert Medak
Freelance Writer/Blogger/Editor/Proofreader/Reviewer/Marketer