As the Director of Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA), I run into all sorts of authors and publishers. Each one is somewhere on the journey of penning, publishing, and promoting books. Some are just starting, others have published a few books, and still others have been publishing for years.
The most surprising thing I run into are authors and publishers who have some knowledge and yet, they think they know all they need to know. Their spirits are not very teachable. These authors and publishers know the basics, but don’t take the time to educate themselves on the finer points.
Some of these finer points include:
- Crafting an intriguing book title.
- Writing an engaging author bio.
- Composing sales text that addresses people’s needs.
- Adding value to people’s lives in social media campaigns.
- Building trust with consumers.
- Learning effective marketing and sales strategies.
Almost anyone can slap together a book. Being open to learning the finer points in publishing and promoting books is what will make the difference between having a successful book or just having a book.
Even if you have been publishing for years, there are always new things to learn. When I first published Your Guide to Marketing Books in the Christian Marketplace, one woman who read the book wrote me and told me that even though she had been in the publishing business for nine years, she learned things she did not know before from reading my book.
The book Outliers made popular the idea that it takes 10,000 hours to master a skill. Very few independently published authors or small publishers have spent 10,000 hours on their craft. Even those that master a skill can still always improve and learn more.
Having a teachable spirit is important to success not only in publishing and promoting a book, but also in life.
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