JA Konrath's Newbie's Guide To Publishing: My Amazon Review
The Newbie's Guide To Publishing is ideal for any new or recently published author trying to get material into print by publishers, agents and online. Joe, J.A., Konrath is a writer with over 500 rejections to his name, who wrote over a million words, before he finally got published (No secrets here--he tell the reader all about it).
And published he did, with a popular crime thriller series featuring a divorced Detective Jaqueline Daniels, and his horror thriller books penned under Jack Kilborn. Joe Konrath from suburban Chicago began a publishing run that continues to swell in readers and books sold even today. He's published traditional hardcover and softcover (see the shelves at Barnes&Noble, Borders, etc.) and recently has published e-books to a burgeoning audience, with sales placing him routinely in the top Amazon e-sellers list. J.A. Konrath has now compiled years of his blog into this 1200 page tome about the publishing process. It is imperative reading for anyone wishing to become a profitable and successful author in the age of print and electronic media. Not only does Joe Konrath explain what makes a book sell, but he goes in depth with the "brass tacks" of the publishing industry, and teaches you how to manage your own writing career. This book has more "pearls" than a Mikimoto necklace.
The topics range from how to set up a manuscript, fonts and styles, what paper to use, how to best enter contests, how to publish online, story length, selling short stories--the real "nuts and bolts" of writing that I literally could not find in any book. Joe goes on to discuss not only how to get an agent, but how your relationship should be with your publisher, agent, editor; what they expect of you, and what you should expect of them. How to promote your book, how to negotiate an advance, how to set up a book tour, what to expect from a book tour, giveaways from authors, how to deal with fans, etc... I have not ever read a book for authors that had the detail that is included in this very inexpensive e-book. And here's a nifty bonus--the e-book contains clickable links to online reader comments and online material (e.g. Joe Konrath's online marketing bio, as an example) for every chapter in this book. I can say, with honesty, that this is the best few dollars I have ever spent on a book for writers.
The most brilliant part of this ebook is the candor with which Joe explains his struggles as a new writer, how he broke into the trade, and how he has grown his name brand to fulfill his life dream, now as a full-time writer. He tells precisely how the royalties for a book add up, how much is paid, how much a writer can make on ebook sales versus paperback and hardcover. He gives examples of writer's contracts and pitfalls of contracting, royalties, publishing rights, etc. He's a real "elbows on the table" guy that spits it all out for us all to digest and learn from his mistakes and triumphs.
I have not had the pleasure of meeting JA Konrath, but someday I would love to pick his brain over a pint of ale, and explore all the knowledge he's garnered about publishing and being a successful writer. For now, this wonderful canon on writing and publishing will do. To say that it's comprehensive is an understatement.
5 of 5 star rating for A Newbie's Guide to Publishing and J.A. Konrath.