Authors, Get a Free Copy of A Path to Publishing by @EdCyzewski

A Path to PublishingToday we’re reviewing, discussing, and giving away A Path to Publishing: What I Learned by Publishing a Nonfiction Book by Ed Cyzewski.  Keep reading to learn how you can win a free copy.

In A Path to Publishing, Ed Cyzewski provides authors with a guide through the entire publishing processes from writing to contacting an agent to drafting a proposal to marketing the book.  It also compares the pros and cons of having a publishing company publish a book versus self-publishing.

The publishing industry is going through radical changes right now.  When publishers are considering new authors, they give a lot of weight to an author’s platform – how many people read their blog and follow them on Twitter and Facebook.  They do this because an author who already has a following online will probably sell more books and probably do a better job of marketing their book once it’s publishing.  A Path to Publishing provides insight into building a platform before submitting a proposal as well as marketing a book online after it’s published.

Favorite quotes:

  • Writing the book is only half of the work in publishing.  Marketing it makes up the other half. (P 22)
  • One of the most important questions you’ll need to answer as an author is why YOU are the person to write this book. (P 25)
  • If you don’t have a website/blog and accounts on Twitter and Facebook, you don’t exist in today’s marketplace. (P 37)
  • Part of developing your craft should also be finding readers for your work. (P45)
  • View your writing time as sacred. (P 59)
  • Listing your web site statistics and the number of friends in your network will help establish your credibility. (P 79)
  • Self-publishing puts a lot of pressure on authors to not only write a clean manuscript, but to organize the editing, designing, printing, and marketing of their books. (P 96)
  • Editors are your most valuable allies.  They will save you from publishing a shoddy book. (P 121)
  • I strongly suggest that you consider developing a regularly updated blog as a first priority. (P 133)
  • A blogger with a regular following and a solid network of fellow bloggers is in a much better position to sell a book proposal and a book. (P 143)
  • If you’re a writer, you’re goal is to connect with readers. (P 176)

Personal thoughts

Since I’ve never published a book, I can’t speak to the quality or accuracy of the advice provided in A Path to Publishing concerning writing a query letter, book proposal or the book itself.  But as the CEO of a company that provides online marketing services and as a blogger who has participated in a number of blog tours for books, I was very impressed with the insight into how an author can market their book online contained in A Path to Publishing.

Right up front in the first chapter, Ed comes out and says, “Writing the book is only half of the work in publishing.  Marketing it makes up the other half.”  Then he goes on to explain both the value and how-to’s of blogging, blog tours, Facebook, Twitter, podcasts, and more.

In recent years, prominent bloggers like Darren Rowse and Chris Brogan have gotten book deals.  So have well known Christian bloggers like Anne Jackson and John Acuff.  Other authors like Pete Willson, Dave Ferguson, Kem Meyer, and Tony Morgan work in full-time ministry, and they also write great blogs and have prominent social media presences, which has made them stand out to publishing companies and helped them sell their books.

If you are an author – published or aspiring – you can’t afford to ignore blogging and social media, and you can’t afford to miss the insight Ed provides into building your platform and marketing your book.

I especially like the fact that Ed wraps up each chapter with specific action steps.  It really makes A Path to Publishing a great resource for authors to keep handy throughout the publishing process.

Discussion

  1. Do you agree with Ed’s claim that “Writing the book is only half of the work in publishing.  Marketing it makes up the other half.” Why or why not?
  2. If you’re a published author, editor, agent, or publisher, what advice would you give to an author aspiring to be published?
  3. If you could ask Ed one question about publishing a book, what would it be?

Interview with Ed Cyzewsk

On Thursday, I’ll be interviewing Ed.  In the interview, I’ll ask him as many of your questions as I can.  Then I’ll publish that interview here on Friday.

Get a Free Book

If you’d like a free electronic copy of A Path to Publishing, all you have to do is

  1. Retweet this post or share it on Facebook, and
  2. Post a comment that includes either a question for Ed or advice for authors  (include your Facebook or Twitter usename in your comment so I can connect your comment to your share/tweet).

Three people will be selected the afternoon of Wednesday 6/30 to receive free e-books.

To get a hard copy, buy A Path to Publishing here (affiliate link).

40 Responses to “Authors, Get a Free Copy of A Path to Publishing by @EdCyzewski”

  1. Questions (for Ed): “1) Many people believe their subject for a non-fiction book is a great subject, however what determines if a publisher will accept the manuscript for publishing?” 2) “What is the difference between “self-publishing” and going through a publisher?”

  2. This is great timing as I’m editing my first book right now! My question: how do regular written pages in Word, 12 point font, translate into “book” pages? I’m trying to figure out how long my book will be.

  3. I agree with Ed’s claim that both writing and marketing are needed for successful publication. However, I would be interested in a discussion based on whether it’s really necessary for both the writing and marketing to be done by the same person, and if so, whether this is for the better or worse.

    It’s interesting that more authors are acquiring marketing savvy, and more marketers are acquiring writing savvy. Traditionally, it had seemed that the aptitudes needed for authoring books were vastly different from those needed to market them. Great writers had tended to be artistic, idealistic, philosophical and perceptive commentators of society, while great marketers had tended to be pragmatic, street smart, action-oriented and shrewd handlers of resources. (Both share the common ground of being astute observers of human nature.) Yet it seems that to be successful in this post-technological Age of Recommendation, both gifted writers and gifted marketers need to overcome certain hurdles to function effectively in areas that may not their primary passion and strengths. I wonder if such a trend towards the blurring of roles for writers and marketers (i.e., writers need to sell, and marketers need to write) is diminishing or enhancing the primary strengths of either roles?

    • Maureen, what an awesome question! I would love to hear what other think about this.

      I think there is one quality that is extremely important to both good writing and good marketing in social media. In fact, it may be the most important quality in both. If nobody else mentions it, I may do a whole blog post about it.

  4. A couple of thoughts, Paul.

    The advice from Ed is remarkably similar to the advice provided by Michael Hyatt (@MichaelHyatt) in an e-book giving direction for writing a book proposal (purchasable for ~$20).

    I am beginning to think that the publishing business is so competitive as to be compared to pro sports or acting in movies. Only the few really make it big.

    Does Ed, in his book, recommend self-publishing as a segue to publishing on contract?

    (Do I have to meet both 1 and 2 above in order to enter?) @therextras

    • Barbara, I think you are right – there will always be a lot more people trying to get published than can ever be published by all the publishing houses.

      Ed does address your question in A Path to Publishing, but rather than address it here, I’ll leave it for the interview.

    • Barbara,
      Great questions and I’ll answer them in the interview, but I did want to address the similarity to Hyatt’s book. First of all, it’s a total win for me that I’m $5 cheaper. 😉

      But seriously, there is a certain amount of common knowledge in the book business that most authors and professionals have. I have tailored my book to completely brand new writers and covered the entire publishing process from making your first networking contacts and developing ideas to marketing a finished book. So it’s a real step by step guide for publishing newcomers.

      There are other books that have the same info, but I have yet to find anything so comprehensive and geared for publishing hopefuls. At least after I published my first book I couldn’t find one to recommend to my friends that would answer ALL of their questions in one place. That’s why I wrote A Path to Publishing.

  5. I started working on writing a book. I am still stuck as to whether it should be fact or fiction. A friend of mine told me I should make it into a movie but I am unsure if it is really movie material. I have never written a book but have lots of questions about how to get it published.

  6. I’ve authored about 40 books, most of them through traditional publishers. I’ve also done vanity press publishing – back when we didn’t have self-publishing. Just one book and we did make a profit. I’ve used self-publishing three times (one book just out) and love that route. If you are brave enough to try it, marketing is a big, big thing to succeed. Lots of social networking needed – blogs, Twitter, Facebook, and you name it. And the final closing for sales is almost always one on one. Billy Graham also knew that in planning is crusades. That means lots of speaking engagments and sharing with anyone and everyone about that book. (put me in for a free copy. I’ll “retweet” this page on the blog for creatingnewworlds.org later today.)

    • Hi Carl, thanks for your comment. It’s great to have someone with as much writing and publishing experience sharing some insight with us here.

    • Great advice Carl. And the thing with writing is that every writer has a slightly different experience. I’ve run into this when I speak at conferences and chat with fellow authors. I hope you drop by when the interview is posted to share your perspective if you’ve learned something other than what I have to say. I was careful to name my book “A” Path to Publishing rather than “The” Path to Publishing for a reason. 🙂
      Ed

  7. I’m in the process of writing and getting a lot of advice from friends. I have one friend that believes books must be “long” to have perceived value–I like to get right to the point. When is K.I.S.S. too much and how do you know if your text is crying for detail? I don’t know that traditional editors help here???

  8. BrianCJacobs here. Publishing my first juvenile novel in October. I by no means am an expert on how to get published-I happened to get in touch with the right people at the right time- but here is my advice. But here is my advice about that book you dream of someday seeing on a shelf with your name on the spine….
    Just write it. Write the book first. If you have to ask yourself “Should I waste my time writing this if no-one is interested in publishing it when I’m finished?” Then maybe you shouldn’t write it in the first place. If you don’t enjoy writing it with no-one hounding you with deadlines then you certainly won’t when people start breathing down your neck!

  9. I am interested to know more about connecting with an agent and how to be informed about contracts. How do you learn more about the business aspects way before marketing comes in to play.
    Thanks!
    Twitter: dani_liz_valle

  10. How much do you just sit down and write? I’ve heard it said that writers have to learn how to write when they don’t want to write. In your experience what percentage is inspiration and how much is perspiration?

  11. what is the up front cost for a self publish on average?
    @thecreativepunk.com

    • I self-published my book “Podcasting Church” for about $20. I’m much lower than most b/c my wife’s cousin edited it for me (she put herself through grad school editing papers) and I did all the layout and graphic design. Those are your biggest expenses: editing, layout and cover design.

      Paul
      http://podcastingchurch.com
      @podcastinchurch

  12. Just tweeted. @dutchbeingme

    So many good questions so far… but I would love to know if there are editors out there that are willing to help develop the story with you (and how much they cost) so that when you get to the stage of publishing, it is already very polished.

    Also, can’t wait to hear/read the answers to Danielle & Rick’s questions above. 🙂

  13. I live in South Africa and obtaining sufficient sales to make a book profitable seems daunting, so the notion of establishing a global following through networking platforms first sounds like a good plan. The only concern is the logistics in getting published globally… What about sharing some thoughts on making use of e-books for global reach?
    @Willie_Krause

    • Great question Willie! I really hadn’t thought about that, but ebooks could be a real game-changer for authors who live in countries like South Africa. A friend of mine who lives in Kenya was soooo excited to get a Kindle earlier this week for her birthday because now she doesn’t have to pay international shipping charges.

  14. Hi Paul,

    Thanks for the review of the book. MArketing may be more than half the battle today. I am told that even a great book may not get published without a proven platform by the author. Building a platform is marketing and the bigger the platform the better the odds of getting a deal. The marketing also helps the book sell after publication. This will help land other deals.

    I have a few published articles to my credit and the advice I can give is as follows:
    1. Don’t give up.
    2. Find periodicals that match your writing
    3. Submit regularly.

    My question for Ed is as follows:
    What is the most important forum for marketing a book?

  15. This is a great opportunity ~ so thank you. Question: Cutting to the chase, can you give top 3 caveats in the publishing process, as well as 3 must-dos, beyond the important blogging/twitter/fb exposure? Thanks and blessings.
    ~ Carmel

    • Carmel,
      When you say “caveats” do you mean the down side? As in, here’s the dark side of publishing?
      Just wanted to make sure I’m tracking with ya.
      Ed

  16. Hi Ed, I’m thinking methods in submission to avoid, turn-offs, things that would automatically cause no further consideration. Not all writers, such as myself, are avid bloggers but passionate about their writing and subject matter. This is obviously new territory for me and while I’ll make mistakes along the way, I’m looking to avoid any major pitfalls in these early stages. I will say this: I am not writing with a goal to be published. I just write because it fulfills me. However, I can envision it in the future. Hope that makes sense.
    Thanks so much.

  17. yeah, I agree, writing is only half of it. Not that I speak from much authority. However, in this day and ask of online connectivity, there is a lot of power in the hands of people in determining who they trust and whose input they will value. Facebook, search, twitter, and soon googleme, provide a way for first the possible reader to analyse the writer and second for the write to brand himself outside of conventional marketing mechanisms.

    I am speaking from a purely online perspective here when it comes to Marketing, but nowadays (especially with ebooks) one can get self published and then the only real marketing available is online.

    Question: Ed, do you feel that the book has any less value than the ‘brick and motor’ version? any less pride in the work?

    Phill

    • Phillip,
      Regarding your question, do you mean to ask whether ebooks have less value than print books, or are you referring to marketing online vs. brick and mortar stores, or both?

      Great observations about marketing.

  18. OK, folks the moment you’ve been waiting for… the 3 winners of the A Path to Publishing e-books are… drumroll, please…

    Maureen (@MaureenLee128), Barbara (@therextras), and Chris (@thecreativepunk)

    Congratulations! Ed or I will be in touch to get those to you.

    Thanks everyone for spreading the word about A Path to Publishing by sharing this post on Facebook and Twitter.

    And thanks to everyone who posted questions. As mentioned in the post, I’m going to interview Ed tomorrow and in that interview I’ll ask him many of the questions here. Then Friday I’ll post the interview in a new blog post.

    If you’ve got other questions you’d like to ask, you’re welcome to continue posting them here until noon Eastern tomorrow. I can’t promise we’ll get to all of them, but I’ll ask as many as I can.

  19. Thank you, Paul! I feel honored to be selected to win “A Path to Publishing”, and can’t wait to read the book. I also look forward to reading your new blog on your interview with Ed.

  20. Hi Ed,
    I just found you on Twitter and retweeted your article on “Get a Free Copy of A Path to Publishing” at http://www.twitter.com/cherylhealey. The timing is very interesting as I’ve been guided to write a second book about ADHD to help the children. I am interested in finding an agent rather than self-publish. Do you have any tips? Thank you and enjoy infinite Blessings! Cheryl

  21. I’m assuming I’m WAY too late to get the free book 🙁

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