Today, I met with one of my authors who has been my client for many years. In recent months, he has seen a sales spike for his book. It is exciting for him, but even more exciting to receive the royalty check I gave him over lunch.
I hadn’t seen the author in person in quite some time, so I asked him what was new. He said that after having been on the shelf in a specific bookstore for over 4 years, he was asked to come back and pick up his unsold inventory (and a check for the couple of books that had sold). The bookstore being referred to is a locally owned and operated bookstore with a fine reputation in the area. This author told me his only goal was to get his books in that bookstore, and as soon as he did, he felt ‘complete as an author.’ He admitted he didn’t even think about how to help the bookstore sell the book, or how to make the book popular enough to reorder… No, he was happy enough just to have his books on their shelves.
I likened this to the team that says their goal is “To get to the Superbowl” when the other team’s goal is “To WIN the Superbowl.” If their goal is just to show up, it’s not even going to be a good game, because in their mind they’ve already reached the ultimate destination.
It’s the same for books… if the goal is just to be published, that’s the easy part – truly. I think the goal for the authors should be to have their books READ! What’s the fun in publishing if the book never gets opened?
There are 3 milestones in any book’s life:
1. Getting written
2. Getting published
3. Getting read!
If your publisher isn’t talking to you about how you accomplish goal #3, you’ve got the wrong publisher!
If you’re only interested in getting on the bookstore shelves, be ready to have your books returned to you.
You need to be thinking about ways to make your book fly off those bookstore shelves! You need to be focusing on ways to get your books to sell through those Internet bookstore websites.
Ask yourself, and listen for the true answer, “What are my goals for my book?” Write down your answer. Now, go for it!
When you’re ready to publish, visit getting-published.com.