Questions tagged [publishing]

Publishing is the act of printing and distributing writing in physical or electronic form. It may refer to the commercial publishing industry, small press, self-publishing and on-demand publishing. This tag should be used for any questions regarding the publishing process in any of these forms.

47
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10answers
13k views

I wrote a novel, now what?

I'm new here, so, please, bear with me. I had a look at previous answers to similar questions, but my case is (possibly) a bit different. I am not a professional writer, so I wrote this (long) novel ...
45
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20answers
12k views

What are good places to post your work where it will be read by others?

Seeing this site and reading some of my ridiculous stories that I wrote a while ago makes me want to start writing again. I know I'll be more enthusiastic if I have people reading my work and ...
43
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8answers
3k views

I have written my first novel and I think it's ready. What next?

I've completed my first novel and done as much editing as I think I can as the author. What should I do next in order to get this out there?
34
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5answers
8k views

Do I have any control over the grammar of my novel?

English grammar is generally pretty black and white, but there are a few areas under debate. For instance, should a series of three have one or two commas? For example: The coach was black, dusty, ...
34
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5answers
735 views

How do I find an agent?

I finished my novel, and everyone I've talked to says I need an agent. How do I find one?
32
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6answers
10k views

How to get my book taken seriously as a teenager? [duplicate]

I have been working on a book for a while, and I probably will be done with it soon. My work is very original in my mind and in the end, this book will be very high quality. But I have been wondering ...
32
votes
8answers
12k views

Why do hardcover books retail for more than three times the cost of softcover books?

One thing I've noticed while browsing bookstores is that hardcover books tend to cost more than softcover ones. Oftentimes a hardcover book that's five times the price of a paperback doesn't have ...
32
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11answers
8k views

Is it a bad idea to adopt an 'English' pen name as an Asian American writer to reach a wider audience?

There is currently a dearth of Asian American writers on U.S. library bookshelves, and those few authors who are Asian Americans tend to write about things associated with Asian culture. Think of Amy ...
30
votes
5answers
3k views

How do I promote a self-published book?

I am in the process of writing a book and I'm considering setting up my own publishing agency to get it published, or else publish solely through the internet, but there is the obvious problem of ...
29
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7answers
5k views

Do most novels not get published?

If a person writes a novel, grammar alright, decent story, word count, etc. everything okay, Is it a crap shoot for that person to get published? Is it just like the lottery or maybe better chances?...
29
votes
8answers
6k views

When do you stop “pushing” a book?

Let's suppose you have finished your novel, through all the appropriate stages of drafting and editing needed. You begin submitting the book to various agents and/or publishing companies, but none of ...
29
votes
5answers
834 views

Publishing for Kindle

I am very keen to get into writing, and have come up with several outline plots for short stories, novels and even trilogies. However, one hurdle, which I expect is not uncommon for most new authors, ...
28
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15answers
17k views

Is it okay to publish a book at a young age?

I am writing a novel that is called 'Murder' It's about a girl who almost gets murdered but then has to live with the murderers with almost no knowledge that they are the ones that killed her. (...
26
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11answers
7k views

Should all books have page numbers?

I am interested in whether there are any compelling reasons why print books should always have page numbers. In particular, I am thinking of books comprising many elements that are each typically ...
25
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6answers
7k views

How does a new writer keep from getting scooped?

I'm looking for a literary agent. I've never published before. 1) What's to keep an agent from taking my manuscript and publishing it themselves, or handing it off to one of their writer friends? 2)...
25
votes
14answers
2k views

How to deal with self-criticism?

I write non-fiction articles for my website and a weekly paid newsletter, and I’m doing that for some time now. However, I still struggle a lot with self-criticism, and find it hard to regard an ...
24
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4answers
398 views

How do I write a synopsis?

I have to write a synopsis to submit to an agent. Are there any guidelines for writing a good synopsis?
23
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2answers
499 views

Warning signs that a publisher may be shady?

Are there any specific signs (singular or groups of) that I should pay attention to when it comes to publishers? I have read about publishing houses that charge their authors quite large amounts of ...
22
votes
3answers
7k views

What is the difference between ISSN and ISBN?

Can anyone explain in layman's terms, using simple terminology, what exactly is the difference between ISSN and ISBN? There are lots of links on the internet, but they are complicated and use legal ...
20
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6answers
1k views

Will blogging my fiction limit its ability to be traditionally published later?

Somewhere, don't ask me where, I picked up the idea that publishers don't like works that the public has already been able to access. When a family member suggested I post short pieces of fiction to a ...
19
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5answers
4k views

Do editors rewrite?

I write fiction, I guess you could say experimental fiction, but I just feel I am more of a stylist. Every story of mine that's been accepted was taken as is. Now, for the first time, I am dealing ...
19
votes
4answers
26k views

How does one go about publishing erotica, and how far is too far?

I write erotica, it started out as an amusement to see how far I could go, but it became a real passion after three or four stories. I have even published a few online and those stories have become ...
19
votes
4answers
561 views

Are agents too busy for new clients? What should I do next?

Most publishers insist that first-time writers approach via a literary agent. However, all the literary agents I have contacted claim to be too busy to take on new clients, as they receive hundreds or ...
18
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6answers
780 views

Can I self-publish on a reputable publishing platform, and how much would it cost?

With the barrier to having a publisher sign a new author seemingly high, especially without prior success or experience, are there any good author-funded alternatives out there to the repeated mailing ...
17
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8answers
8k views

Is it possible for an author to release a novel every week using dictation technology?

I have heard that authors can do 5000 words an hour with dictation. For a six-hour day writing, that is 30,000 words. Thus it would take less than three days to complete a standard novel manuscript. ...
17
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5answers
3k views

Can I shop an unfinished novel?

I've been writing a novel that addresses some very current themes. My belief is that if I can get it out there quickly, it will succeed well. I'm working on it frantically, but will agents consider ...
17
votes
4answers
680 views

When to accept an editor's rewrite request?

So there's an editor who has accepted a story of mine for publication... but he wants me to change the ending. Normally I'm pretty open to editorial changes, but in this case the proposed changes ...
17
votes
1answer
3k views

What are those “countdown” numbers on the copyright page?

On the copyright pages in many books I find the following "countdown" numbers and I am wondering what the significance of this is? In a non-fiction book I have, "The Call of the Mild" it looks like: ...
17
votes
3answers
632 views

Pros and Cons of different styles of publishing

I was reading on the meta site that someone thinks we're hostile to self-publishing, and I read over some old questions looking for evidence. I didn't really find signs of hostility, but I certainly ...
17
votes
2answers
9k views

What is the requirement for a book to be a NYT Bestseller?

I've seen "New York Times Bestseller" written across the top of more books than I can count. It seems every other book I look at has this advertisement, so much so that I discount it as a meaningful ...
17
votes
6answers
3k views

Do publishers really need to translate between UK and US English?

Is there really a need for a book to be translated from UK to US English? I'm nearing completion on my own great work, and just want to know if it is truly worth doing a British and an American ...
16
votes
8answers
870 views

How much leeway can be expected from an editor regarding my preference for nonstandard punctuation?

As I hope to present a unique style to the world, as I am not especially tolerant of being told I'm doing things "wrong" when that's a subjective statement related to writing style, and as I've never ...
16
votes
1answer
448 views

Getting My Rights Back

Back in the late 90's I wrote a picture book which eventually was published in 2002 by a big name publishing house. The book was critically acclaimed, won an award, and went through a couple of ...
15
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5answers
995 views

What should tie a collection of short-stories together?

Short-stories are a nice format to write. If you have been an aspiring writer for at least one year, it's quite probabile that you've got at least three short stories drafted out, sitting in some ...
15
votes
5answers
37k views

Where can I find sales numbers for books?

I'm a writer, working on a non-fiction book proposal. Finding public, free sales numbers for comparable titles is nearly impossible. BookScan is a subscriber service run by Nielsen. "Above the ...
15
votes
4answers
11k views

How to handle taxes for a self-published book

I'm thinking of publishing a book on kindle, but I don't currently have a business set up. Do you need a business to publish a book? I'm curious as to how to handle US taxes for the royalties. I ...
15
votes
3answers
3k views

What should be in a cover letter for short story submission to a magazine?

It's been about five years since I last submitted any of my work for publication, and my memory of what I was taught then to put in my cover letter is getting rusty. What kind of information should ...
15
votes
4answers
1k views

What determines genre?

Is the "genre" a piece of fiction belongs to determined by the author, or by the editor and publishing house? Is there an established definition for each genre, or is it largely ad hoc? I ask ...
15
votes
3answers
426 views

Lists of Suggested Magazines to Submit To

I recently began writing poetry again. I would like to look into submitting my poems to a magazine. Where can I find a list of literary magazines through which I could sort to find a possible fit?
14
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3answers
1k views

Is it true that stories get rejected simply because the stories are not appealing enough and not because of the quality of the writing?

In other words, if the writing is poor or not good enough but the editor likes the story, then a revision is requested. I'd like to add that part of the reason for asking this question is because ...
14
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2answers
160 views

Are already privately bound books a deterent for publishing houses?

I've read somewhere that putting your story, or a piece of it, on the internet would make it difficult (not to say impossible in some cases) to find a publisher wanting to publish your script. Would I ...
14
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3answers
2k views

Meeting with a respected publisher, what questions should I ask?

At a writing conference I've managed to snag a 15 minute appointment with a publisher (who published Terry Pratchett, my favourite author). I'm a debut fantasy novelist. She will have received a ...
13
votes
9answers
2k views

Can fanfics be bestsellers? [closed]

Fanfiction is somewhat of an uncharted territory, which few actual writers/critics take serious note of or are very enthusiastic about. It has been long asked and established whether publishing ...
13
votes
9answers
2k views

How much does style contribute to the overall value of a novel?

I've recently got a crushing critique. The critic pointed out I was obviously unfamiliar with the basic tools of the trade and that my style was non-existent. She insisted that "everybody can invent a ...
13
votes
5answers
4k views

Can I use my legal name as the protagonist if I'm pitching my book to traditional publishers under a pen name?

Can I use my legal name as the protagonist if I'm pitching my book to traditional publishers under a pen name? Would I be rejected for doing this?
13
votes
8answers
3k views

Is it a bad idea to publish individual chapters of my book idea online for feedback?

I have already typed at least 6-7 chapters of this book I've been focused on, but what I want to ask is, is it wise to post what I have so far online for feedback? Or am I just setting myself up for ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

What are advantages/disadvantages to use a CC-license for your writings?

What are the implications, if I choose a Creative-Commons-license for my work? Cory Doctorow seems fine with this. Is this exceptional?
13
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2answers
1k views

Do authors get paid for quotes and attributions used on book covers?

I think I know the answer to this, and my guess is "No", but I don't have a definitive reason what that guess is. When you see on the cover of a book, not from a newspaper or reviewer, but from ...
13
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3answers
459 views

At what point does an author deal with an editor?

I'm just wondering: at which point do you have to deal with the editor, and what are the (possible) consequences? That is, when is the editor's involvement greatest? After or before a deal? I'd ...
13
votes
3answers
703 views

When publishing a Fantasy novel, do I look for a specific Fantasy-only publisher, editor, and/or agent?

When attempting to publish a fantasy book, how will I go about selecting a publisher? Is it possible to find a list of publishers that publish specifically fantasy books? Similar to publishers being ...