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402. Alternative ARTICLE: What every author needs to know II

WHAT EVERY AUTHOR NEEDS TO KNOW II

In my first article (go to www.americanchronicle.com and go to authors-look for 9/9 article) I painted a rather bleak picture for new authors. Allow me to continue in that vein for a few moments. In an article on gawker.com (11/8) it was reported that many literary agents are a little on the mentally challenged side of literary circles. The writer indicated that many manuscripts were sent to her (we assume she is a publisher) filled with typos, poorly constructed letters, misspelled author AND agent names, poorly formatted and error ridden manuscripts. So much for holding out for the agent who promises a book contract but does not even take the time to spell their own name right.

The next bit of information comes from the Jerry Simmons newsletter. Citing the Nielsen Bookscan result for 2004, we see the following information:

In 2004 1.2 million titles were published (excluding self-published and I
believe POD titles).

Of that total, 950,000, 79%, sold fewer than 99 copies.

200,000 titles, 17%, sold fewer than 1,000 copies.

25,000, 2%, sold more than 5,000 copies.

10, you do the math, sold more than a million copies.

Average book sales were 500 copies per title.

On the bright side, if you can sell over 100 books you are in the top 20% of
books sold; a good marketing ploy when contacting bookstores.

As a new author there is little going for you. Many agents are not worth the postage to send them your book. It might be wise; if you go this route to start with those who accept e-mail submissions and save the envelope. This will at least give you a fell, at no cost, as to the interest in you book. The mainstream publishers are not on your side. You have little chance of getting the book in their hands. The numbers are not on your side either. 80% of titles sell less than 100 books. As I said in my last article, if you are not willing to put body, mind and soul into your work there is little chance of being on Oprah.

So what is on your side? Family and friends? Well, depending on your popularity, there’s the first ten books sold. Then what? The best weapon in the author’s arsenal is-THE AUTHOR! If you are behind your book-100%-you are on the path to getting what you desire for your book. You are the one who will market and sell your book. Your belief and enthusiasm for your work is the key to turning the numbers in your favor. Your belief that you have a work worth reading will set you above the pack.

You must make one key decision and then you are good to go. You must honestly evaluate your book and decide, for yourself, that it is the best you can do and that it truly says what you want it to say. If you are unsure, find a new occupation or hobby. But if you truly believe that you have a winner, it can be a winner. With a positive attitude, a clear vision and a strong desire to succeed you will be on your way to publishing heaven. You will find a way to publish your book and will find a way to reach the right markets.

If you have been a part of The Secret phenomena, you already know what I mean. The film has been a worldwide hit and recent guest appearances on The Larry King Show, national news outlets and popular talk shows have many in a positive frame of mind to create their own reality-including publishing and selling your book.

If you think this is bunk-move on to the next article in this newsletter. But if you are sure that you desire to be a writer and that you have good ideas that you want to see in print and on bookstore shelves, then read these last lines.

If you can visualize (see) your book in print; if you can see it (in your mind) on the shelves of bookstores: if you can see readers buying and talking about your book; and, if you can do this with a deep sense of emotion and gratitude, it will happen. If you can read some of the negative items I have written about your chances for success and say, “this guy is full of…I know my book will sell,” then you will succeed.

If you let nothing deter you from your vision and desire, you will be published and you will sell books. You are no longer looking for ‘the big break,’ you are making your own big break. Any successful new author will tell you, even if they do not understand why, that total belief and commitment to your project is the key to success.

Allow me to coin a new term, “visualized marketing.” See it, feel it, taste it, smell it, and touch it in your mind, and you will have a book worthy of all of the major bookstores.

Don’t forget if you join the Alternative Yahoo Group before 1st December, you can download a free copy of the ebook “Waking God”. After this date, it will be removed from our files! So hurry and join NOW! Scroll down to the Yahoo Group Logo and click to join!

Philip F. Harris
Co-Author WAKING GOD
www.wakinggod.com
Author, A MAINE CHRISTMAS CAROL
http://christmascarol.bravehost.com
Nationally Syndicated Writer
www.americanchronicle.com
PHILIP HARRIS’ BLOG
http://philipharris.blog.com

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