Cinnabar Bridge

December 25, 2008

The reluctant marketer

My president’s letter for the BAIPA News [January 2009]

You know you have to do it. You know books won’t sell without it. But what if you are a reluctant marketer?

What if you hate selling? Promoting yourself? What if you are shy? Or can’t imagine doing any of John Kremer’s “1001 Ways to Market Your Books.”

Egads, what do you do then?

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November 10, 2008

The value of our affiliations

Filed under: books,Organizations,publishing,Resources,Uncategorized — phwebnet @ 9:04 pm
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Another letter for the BAIPA News [November 2008]

What is the value of an organization? For many BAIPA members it is our monthly meetings, our annual daylong workshop, the sharing of our experiences. It is very much about community, which I’ve written about before. But one other way an organizations is valuable is the other organizations it has relationships with.

BAIPA has some long-standing relationships that are worth talking about, again. And we are looking to develop more relationships that will benefit you, our members.

So, today, I’m going to talk about IBPA, WNBA, and SPAN. At the end of this article are the web addresses for these three organizations, where you can go to find out more about them, sign up for their newsletters or become members yourselves.

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October 10, 2008

Building your team

Filed under: books,publishing — phwebnet @ 1:13 am
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Another article for the BAIPA News [October 2008]

Last month I wrote about the author-editor relationship and the emotional component of that relationship. It occurs to me that as you build your publishing business, this is just the first among many relationships you will develop along the way.

Many of us are authors as well as publishers and this discussion applies to you as well. When I think of famous artists, there are very very few who achieve great success without help, without a team effort. I think of Picasso and Monet and I think of wives and brothers, and cousins and agents who believed in them, who ran their businesses. That’s how we need to think about our business – as an author or as a publisher.

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September 10, 2008

The author editor relationship

Filed under: books,publishing — phwebnet @ 1:04 am
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Another article for the BAIPA News [September 2008]

The relationship between author and editor is probably the most highly charged relationship in the publishing process. As an author you are giving your editor permission to change your story. You are turning your baby over to another person who can change the meaning, the voice, even the essential nature of your manuscript.

In many cases, this is a very good thing. In business books in particular re-structuring the manuscript can make it stronger. And often your editor has a better handle on the marketplace and can help you tap into that marketplace more directly.

For others of you, your manuscript is part of you. It is personal and intimate and you may feel vulnerable when reading it, showing it to others, pitching it, or asking for advice.

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August 12, 2008

Think about content

Another of my letters for the BAIPA News [August 2008]

Many think we in the book world are an endangered species. That in the brave new world there will be no books. It reminds me of radio in the 50s when television hit the country. It was going to be the end of radio. Oh my gosh, with pictures on TV who would want to just listen to a radio. And radio did suffer. Their audience declined, the industry moaned and groaned. And today with satellite radio and the Internet and podcasts and rss feeds, radio (audio programs) is thriving. That’s what happening to publishing.

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July 12, 2008

Finding the right energy

Another letter for the BAIPA News [July 2008]

Being an author and a publisher can pull at us in different ways – and being small, independent publishers means that there are dozens of tasks we need to complete on a regular basis. Some days I get up gung-ho and step right into the external tasks on my plate – calling people, making connections, negotiating, asking for help. And some days I turn off my phone and write or read. I used to fight this. I used to push myself to make those calls or I’d get angry with myself if I couldn’t sit down and read a manuscript or write.

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July 3, 2007

TOC conference – afterthoughts

I went to the TOC (Tools of Change) conference in San Jose a week or so ago. It was all about publishing and how it’s changing. And about the tools others are using to move this industry into the 21st century.

It was a great conference. It was a mix of novice sessions and advanced. Since I’ve been online since, yikes!, 1985, and I built my own early sites in Notepad, some of the basic electronic / web stuff I already knew. But, there was plenty I didn’t. In addition, I met a lot of people, which was really the highlight of the conference. Who came, and who didn’t was really interesting.

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June 11, 2007

Tools of Change conference

Hope to meet up with you at the Tools of Change Conference put on by O’Reilly Media. I’m looking forward to hearing about all the changes happening in the publishing world. I’m sure I’ll be exhausted when I come home, but they have some great speakers lined up: Chris Anderson, Tim O’Reilly, John Ingram.

I love books and writing and publishing — at least the book world. And now I’m gonna sit and absorb what others have to say aboaut what’s happening. It’s an exciting time and O’Reilly are certainly qualified to put on a conference like this. I heard that at BEA much of the conversaton was about technology and how the book world is changing.

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May 17, 2007

The changing face of publishing

We all know publishing is changing. From Craig’s List to The Wall Street Journal to print on demand, technology has changed and is continuing to change how we publish books, magazines, content. How do we know what is going to last and what is a fad? How do we know when to invest and when to stand and watch? How do we know who knows what they are talking about?

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June 8, 2006

Judging a book by its cover

We don’t like to think we are so shallow. Judging a book by its cover has come to have many levels of meaning in our culture. We don’t want to be shallow, but we all seem up against the belief that pretty ones do better in the world and life. That how we present ourselves to the world matters — from getting a partner to making more money.

Well, with books it’s the same thing. In our time challenged lives, we make choices all the time about stuff based on first impressions. I read somewhere that bookstore visitors spend about 8 seconds on the front cover of a book and if they turn to the back cover, they spend another 15 seconds. So, you tell me. Is the cover important?

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