Advice on Publishing Your First Book

By Dr. Lindamichelle Baron
Author, Educator, Motivational speaker & President, Harlin Jacque Publications

Steps while you are still working:

1. Many who want to be writers talk about writing but in order to become a writer you must


write. …sometimes we mistake the discussion about the writing as the actual writing Remember...writers write...that's how they become authors.

2. Make the time to write...some authors use time management to write at specific times...Whatever, just do it. Find time between your work times when a moment can be caught. Don’t wait for the right moment. Catch the moment to write. Don’t lose the muse. I practice life management to squeeze my passion between the necessities of life.

3. Read, Read, Read….do read the genre you will be writing…but be careful not to become so absorbed that you begin to write like what you have read for the story grammar (format). Most important, remember to write from your own voice. Don’t smother your voice!

4. Develop a network of author illustrators and locate resources: Society of Children’s Authors…and Society of Children’s illustrators, Websites…bookstores, the Library is your friend!!! As you journal, join or create your own writer's group. I did that when I was writing my retelling of an Aesop's fable. I joined a group named Pen and Rose...we eventually published a book of our own works, Tales with Tales. Participating in the process is one that encouraged our members to write other stories.

Specific Advice about getting published

Write the book. Sounds obvious…but it is not. We sometimes get so excited by our ideas that we talk about them instead of writing them down. And in your case, illustrate the book (mock up)…An author/ illustrator Write the book as an author not as the illustrator: friend gave me this advice for you Suzanne, In that you are a passionate will have to work at not thinking about the illustrations as you write. Although the illustrations will eventually bring the book to life…It can kill the development of the story during the process of writing.Know the market…Go bookstores and library to determine what is published similar to your book. Be prepared to note how yours is different…twist…addition of characters not recognized in other books…or perhaps the use of language or the audience for whom the book is written

The issue of an agent

Sell yourself in some context…

Have a whole book written …sample that the agent can see the work…(finished book)

A legitimate, experienced agent will not ask you for money…there are predatory agents who become wealthy drawing blood from other people’s dreams

Be prepared to be rejected all of the best writers have been rejected…don’t let rejections stop you…learn from them…read those you receive with comments carefully, not necessarily to change but be aware of possible issues. I had a book accepted. The editor called me and said it was the freshest writing she had read in a long time…but the company didn’t know where to place it…who the audience would be…and if there was an audience for the book. It didn’t get published. Didn’t stop me

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