Author Topic: What do agents mean when they say...  (Read 1321 times)

Offline Donnettetxgirl

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What do agents mean when they say...
« on: August 30, 2006, 09:09:44 PM »
On some agents websites, when searching their submission guidelines, they ask what can you do to help promote your own project. I'm not at all sure what that means. Anyone have an idea?

Thanks, Donnette

Nadine L

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Re: What do agents mean when they say...
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2006, 12:55:48 PM »
My best guess is that the agent will use it for an additional selling point when they shop the ms to publishers' editors, eg. "this author" will make themselves available to do book signing tours, talk shows, speaking engagements, have a blog or what ever means to create buzz about the book...(children's lit might be visit schools and libraries...)

There are only so many books a publisher can physically produce each "season," yet they need (or want) a larger share of the market.  Even the publishers with large marketing departments are beginning to ask their authors what they are willing to do to help sell their books.  This trend is new with the larger publishers. Small presses also do this since they have limited marketing departments. I expect this is becoming the norm for US publishers. It is in an author's best interest to do this, whether asked or not...your career depends on how well your books sell (called sell-through number).  Keep in mind that publishers often knowingly publish more copies of a book than they think will sell.  They do this to make "the players" think they have confidence in the book so they get more notice and better reviews.  But, it is a problem when LOTS of remainders are left.

Read some websites of traditionally published authors in your genre and see if you can create a list of what they are doing (look for coming events, etc).  From that decide which things you can do.  (My info says, trade off the tour for better placement in the bookstore -- coops.) There are lots of books on marketing books...borrow a few from the library to get some ideas. If you find a book that is particularly helpful, consider buying it so you can write in the margins you ideas to customize it to fit your genre.

Hope this helps. Do your own research, don't take my word for, this is a disclaimer!  ;D