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Blog to book redux at BLOGHER

May 16, 2008

My session is posted!  On the 2008 BlogHer conference session list, you can see the Blog to Book session is listed.  So, this means I might have to do some thoughtful research and planning, like all good speakers are supposed to do.

So I turn it over to you.  If you are thinking of writing a book, what types of questions would you want to ask someone in publishing?  What would you like me to talk about?  How to get an agent, do you need an agent, what are editors looking for?  If you have written or are currently writing a book, what would help you then?  How to work with marketing and your editor on promotion?  What are the 5 things every author should be doing to promote their book?  Let’s start the conversation now, so come July when I am in full-on panic/sweat mode, I have some good stuff to work with. 

6 Comments leave one →
  1. May 16, 2008 6:53 pm

    Hi Ellen. I’d love to know how much stock editors put in current trends and do trends matter or is it all about the story in the fiction world. Also if you like pop on over to my blog and check out Ask the Agent, I’ve got lots of question that folks have put up for my agent that might give you tons to talk about.

  2. darci permalink
    May 16, 2008 11:40 pm

    “If you are thinking of writing a book, what types of questions would you want to ask someone in publishing?”

    How big is my advance, and can we negotiate those royalty rates?

    Oh, that was probably not the right answer to your question.

  3. May 20, 2008 9:19 am

    Great ideas Kwana! Thanks. I will definitely check out your blog and see what I can use at the session.

    Darci, that’s the perfect answer, in that 99% of the people in the room are probably thinking that. The best answer I can give them is to describe how the negociation process takes place, why it’s an advance against royalties, and not a free gift, and why they’re not getting on Oprah. Doesn’t matter what book it is, I always have to tell the author they are NOT getting on Oprah.

  4. May 20, 2008 2:57 pm

    At last year’s Blog to Book session, one of the general messages was that getting a book of essays published as your first book was pretty much impossible. I’m really interested in whether that’s true and how to work with (or around) such “first book” parameters. It seems like a lot of bloggers who are serious about writing would be interested in doing a book of essays, as it’s a natural jump from one to the other. I know several of us who are just dying to be the next David Sedaris or Sarah Vowell. 🙂

    I’m also interested in how to build networking contacts within the publishing world, especially if you don’t live near a big publishing city or have an initial contact to get you “in.”

  5. May 21, 2008 8:08 am

    Jennifer, thanks for your feedback. Those are great questions, which I can certainly answer in the session. I for one would love to publish the next David Sedaris, especially if that ends up being a she.

  6. July 2, 2008 11:51 pm

    I’ve been to several writing conferences when I was doing the initial work on a biography of Gene Stratton-Porter, and figured out that the best markets for it are University Presses, but I’ve become sidetracked working on a memoir about my experience as the child/proxy in a Munchausen by Proxy abuse situation. I’m having difficulty blending my two perspectives, one as the survivor of child abuse and one as a social scientist. I really don’t want to hire an editor that may not know diddly about academic publishing or clinical sociology/psychology.

    Who or what do you recommend that writers turn to when they are having difficulty hashing out the best approach to a chapter or structure in non-fiction work?

    Is this a proper use for an agent?

    I will write this no matter what and self-publishing is a likely avenue for me. But I want to have this reach the largest market possible within my target audience – professionals who come in contact with abuse survivors and the actual abuse survivors themselves.

    Are there other options besides editorial services and agents that I could employ? I do have some friends who will read the manuscript when the first draft is complete?

    Thanks for any thoughts on editorial assistants for “out of normal ‘genre'” writing that you might be able to include.


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