III. Write Your Caregiving Book—Finding Your Fans and Getting Published

Do you want to write a caregiver book? Do you want it published? Do you want to touch caregivers’ lives with your words of hope from your own experience? If so, follow steps 3 and 4 to becoming a published author in this third installment of “Write Your Caregiving Book.”

In the previous article of this three-part series you learned Two of the Four Steps to Becoming a Published Author.  Prior to that, I. Write Your Caregiving Book—Overview.

If you missed the first article of the series, please click to read about how the pioneering caregiving book, “Where’s my shoes?” My Father’s Walk through Alzheimer’s was written and published.

3. Build your tribe.

Avadian - Finding the JOY in Alzheimer's books Photo Courtesy Bonnie KeithYears ago, building your fanbase or having a platform meant appearing regularly in the print media, on radio, and TV, where you had thousands of followers or you filled a unique niche. Meeting organizers found you and invited you to present a speech.

Today, nearly all promotional efforts are conducted online. If you have a newsletter and/or a weekly blog, good! If you are posting consistently, great! Social media makes it easier to get people’s attention; though, in a more crowded field with shorter attention spans. Today, you have to stand out. Be unique. Post consistently to engage your tribe. Except in the rare case of being discovered quickly, there are no shortcuts to this phase of your path to being published.

Start with your compelling 100-word marketing tool.

4. Get published.

First, know that publishers need to make a profit to survive. If you can clearly convince a publisher that your book will sell, publishers will likely come to you. Yes, you won’t even have to try to find a publisher. Remember, it’s a business.

How to get a publisher interested in your writing.

  • Have a solid platform with engaged fans. You can accomplish this with as few as 100 actively engaged followers.
  • Sell copies of your book in advance. If you have somehow managed to sell thousands of copies in a short time, word will get around. A publisher will see that your book has potential.
  • Make certain your correspondence is error-free. When you take time to pay attention to the details, you give a potential publisher confidence in your professionalism.

Your goal is to convince a publisher that investing in editing, formatting, designing the pages and cover of your book, and then printing, binding, and shipping to wholesalers at a 55% discount, will produce a profit.

Self-Publish

You may be an enterprising author who prefers to invest in your own success.

This will entail more work than the tip-of-the-iceberg temptation offered by online book publishing portals such as Amazon Kindle. Most books sell only 250 copies, not enough for a publisher to make a profit.

Some steps to self-publishing include: Create and then register your own publishing company. Apply for a resale ID. Buy one or an initial block of 10 ISBNs. Submit your book to the Library of Congress. Partner with a wholesaler or distributor. Find a good editor and designer. (You’ll be wise to outsource both.) Send bids to printers or use Amazon’s or Ingram’s (Lightning Source or Ingram Spark) print-on-demand and retail or wholesale services.

After you do all of the above, you’ll still need to market to pull sales through the book sales channels such as Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and independent bookstores.

Partner with an experienced publisher to produce your book.

To learn the ropes, if you choose to go DIY, partner with an experienced publisher or a hybrid publisher. You pay to have an experienced publisher produce and help market your work. Even though you will pay for the costs to produce and market your book, you’ll fast-track your DIY knowledge for your second book, if you choose to go it alone. Click here for an example of the  hybrid-book publishing process.

The advantage of going with an established publisher is for their industry connections. Their experience will help you get your book into readers’ hands. You may even sell international translation rights. The added visibility may even help you to sell copies by the case to organizations and conference planners.

How do you find these publishers?

Look on the copyright page to learn the publisher of the kind of books you plan to write. Read the Acknowledgments to find names.

90% of what you must do to get your book into the hands of readers, is below the tip of the publishing iceberg.

If writing a book seems like more than you want to do right now, consider submitting a story for TheCaregiversVoice.com

There you have it… what you choose to do now will determine what you reflect upon at the end of the year.

Four Steps to Being a Published Author

  1. Research what’s out there—books, articles, videos, podcasts.
  2. Write a succinct and compelling overview—100 words.
  3. Build your tribe—your fans who will buy your work and more significantly, share your work with their connections.
  4. Find a publisher or self-publish.

This article is an update of Original Article Book TIPS – Getting your Caregiver Book Published

The post III. Write Your Caregiving Book—Finding Your Fans and Getting Published first appeared on The Caregivers Voice.

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