Monday, October 22, 2007

Build Your Audience

This past week I had dozens of one on one meetings with writers at the Glorieta Christian Writers Conference. Each of these writers wanted to pitch their book idea and try to entice me to take their project as their literary agent. A number of them had good ideas which contained merit. The majority of them had some great life experience and knowledge to pour into a book topic. Yet often they lacked any exposure in the marketplace. The majority of them had never been published or written for a magazine or newspaper. Or if they had been published, at times their book idea had no connection to their publishing experience. Everything was done on happenstance rather than a deliberate effort.

Publishers and literary agents don't have the opportunity to help you build your audience and career. Each individual writer has to take charge of that responsibility and build their own audience. It was one of the themes that I repeated to authors over and over. If they love to write about _______, what are they doing to build that audience today and right now? Can they launch a free newsletter? Can they write magazine articles for print publications and Internet magazines? Can they develop a reputation as being the go-to person for such information? The answer is yes to every one of these questions. It will not happen instantly or overnight yet with each step they can increase their attractiveness to publishers and literary agents. Then when they pitch their ideas, it will be something worth serious deliberation and consideration.

Some of those people will have to self-publish their books and demonstrate their market through the sales of that book. I hope you can join me tomorrow night for my live tele-seminar with Susan Driscoll, the president of iUniverse. Sign up and ask your question.

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