Writers Are from Saturn, Publishers Are from Pluto (or you pick the planets)

September 1998
by Judith Appelbaum and Florence Janovic

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The point is, writers and publishers see things so differently that they sometimes forget they share a goal: selling the book.

We’ve been on both sides and alongside and in the middle of the publishing process in our years as marketing consultants to authors and to publishers big and small. Because we know from experience that better author-publisher relationships lead to better sales-and because issuing guidelines for behavior seems to be de rigueur these days-we offer 20 suggestions for building productive publishing partnerships. Take your 10 and pass the other 10 along.

How to Be More Lovable to Your Publisher, or”Sensible Solutions Profitable Partnership Tips
for Authors”
Be realistic. Even the smartest, most enthusiastic publisher has to work within tight time and money constraints. Learn the cast of characters. Ask your editor to introduce you to the key players who will be working on your book, including people who handle special sales, sub-rights and so on-not just the person who’ll be doing publicity. Brainstorm on blurbs. Compile a wish list of relevant celebrities and authorities; track down their addresses and draft letters that show how your book meshes with their interests. Then, and only then, ask whether the publisher will solicit their comments. Select sections for serial sales. Could parts of your book work as magazine pieces? Mark them, match them up with specific periodicals, and pass your list along at least four…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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