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Publishing Your Book ~ Part I

So, you’ve written your book! You’ve read it over and over again making corrections and now you want to publish it. Congratulations!


There are many avenues you can take when publishing. One of them is to work with a literary agent, who will, in turn present your manuscript to a publisher. It is a process...sending them a well-crafted query letter is just the beginning. There are services out there that will charge you a hefty fee for teaching you how to craft a query letter that will supposedly get you the agent and publisher of your dreams.


I went that route, but I finally got past the part of thinking this was the only way to go. Let me tell you a quick story...When I was teaching, I was writing my Belden Boy Series at the same time. My fourth and fifth graders were so thrilled that I would ask their advice, such as “Should the character do this or do that? What would you like to see in the storyline?” The kiddos in my classroom were my captive audience, my fans.

During that year, there was a wonderful new story by a well-known author available to children in stores. I was excited, as well, to read the the story. And what was really great, was the fact that the author was making a guest appearance in our school district and we were all invited! The children had purchased the book and asked me if I thought that the author would sign their copies of the book, just like I sign the copies of the Belden Boy Series for them. I said, “Of course!” Boy, was I wrong. At the end of what was an engaging presentation by the author, didn’t turn out well. The children, with the author’s books in their hands, watched as she was whisked away out of the building. The children were devastated and it hit me


clearly. The author was under contract with a publishing company to follow their rules. That is when I decided to continue to self-publish my own book...be my own boss and get close to the children, my audience, to sign their books, answer their questions and talk with them.


That’s my story with seeking an outside publisher. One might say that ‘I’m sour grapes’ because I didn’t land a big name publisher. It took me years and thousands of dollars ($17,000.00 to be exact) to come to the realization that what I’ve created with my own family company is priceless. It truly is their loss, not mine!

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