In a recent conversation I had with an indie author, the author told me that she had sent a query to a number of podcasts. This author was working on scheduling a podcast tour.
I asked her if she meant that she had sent a pitch to these shows. The author asked me to explain the difference between a query and a pitch to her.
I explained that a query is the request (letter or email) that a person sends to print publication to inquire about submitting an article or book to be considered for publication. A pitch is the request (usually email) that one sends to media outlets—radio, television, and podcast shows—when one is seeking a guest interview or spotlight on the show.
The author and I then commiserated together about how much there is to learn about publishing!
Every industry has its own language. There is medical lingo, legalese, and car talk. The publishing industry has its own terms like:
- Derivative work
- Exclusive rights
- Gatefold flaps
- Moral turpitude clause
Every author and publisher should take the time to educate themselves so that they are familiar with the publishing industry language. Whether you are traditionally published or indie published, you will have conversations with industry experts. Knowing the publishing industry language allows you to both understand what the other person is saying and to talk intelligently to that person in return.
Mary Hollingsworth has compiled a resource to help you. The Publishing Dictionary is an information, easy-to-understand reference that includes Christian publishing terms.
The book is designed to help anyone—authors, editors, proofreaders, marketers, publishers, and freelancers—understand and communicate accurately and effectively with others in the industry.
If you want to make sure that you are speaking the correct language, I suggest that you get a copy of this book and keep it as a handy reference guide.
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