Should I Publish This Book?

March 1999
by Alex Stevenson

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This little publisher went to market; this little publisher stayed home; this little publisher ate roast beef; this little publisher ate none. And this little publisher went We! We! We! have got to have better guidelines for choosing our manuscripts! Investing in a new book is like investing in a new business. A significant amount of start-up capital is required to produce each book, and a complete, well-thought-out marketing plan must be developed for each book in order to begin the climb toward success. That’s a lot of time and money invested before the book has the chance to prove its monetary worth, therefore each manuscript considered for publication has to be judged by its potential to make a sizable profit. Is there an easy way to tell a sure shot from a dud? I think there is. Successful venture capitalists know which little start-up businesses will eat roast beef by analyzing all of the consumer and product factors that have consistently spelled success. These same principles can also be applied to the publishing industry on a book-by-book basis. The following eight factors will help to determine a manuscript’s success in the marketplace, and through its probable success, the manuscript’s profit potential can be measured. A significant absence of any one of these factors can spell financial disaster for the hopeful publisher who is looking to recapture their investment. Answering the questions that follow will help shape the marketing direction that the book shoul…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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