If you’re an author with a book concept to pitch for publication, know thy market. This means understanding the marketplace and keeping up with the news in the publishing business. If you are serious about getting published and getting paid in today’s publishing environment, it’s a good idea to keep up with current events in the book world. I mean much more than reading the Sunday NYT Review of Books and skimming bestseller lists.
Publishing is a business. So where are the best sources of news and background information for an author? These are the top 4 across all genres and types of publishing.
1. Shelf Awareness has a free subscription to readers. Even if you aren’t an author seeking publication, if you love books this is a great place to dip your toes into enlightment about the business of publishing. It comes out on Tuesdays and Fridays if you subscribe to their Readers version and let’s you know what’s new in publishing. The professional version examines the business of publishing with a weekday trade newsletter.
2. Publisher’s Weekly is known as the Bible of the book business. A weekly news magazine about the international book publishing business and is targeted to the business and professional audience of authors, agents, editors, publishers, and booksellers. It has been published since 1872.
3. Galley Cat is the news hub for MediaBistro. News of deals, writers resources, reviews, and all things current and trendy in book publishing.
4. Publishers Lunch Automat provides up to date information for booksellers and curates the day’s publishing news reports. Delivered daily through email subscription, it’s one of the best places to see what book concepts sell and how they are pitched. It is the free newsletter of Publishers Marketplace, a subscription service targeted to the book publishing industry.
All four of these also offer job boards, resources for writers, reviews, and helpful links. Publisher’s Weekly, Galley Cat and Publisher’s Markeplace have professional versions which bring a subscriber much further behind the paywall to access helpful databases.
Reading the news about the marketplace in which you hope to compete as an author is smart strategy.