I saw an interesting article about how six keys to getting a book published. You can read it here.
The six keys were:
- know the world of publishing
- discern the best path to publish
- find a niche
- establish a platform
- write a great book proposal
- accept rejection
I am going to assume that it is understood that writing with excellence actually plays a part in this process. Furthermore, I am assuming that "find a niche," would include researching the subject, evaluting your audience, being specific about to whom you write. The author discusses going into book stores to see what's selling. Um, go into a Christian bookstore and see what's selling? He's the president of Lifeway, does he not know that what sells is often not actually very good? Does he see what sells in women's circles? Lord, forgive me if I ever write what is currently really popular among most women readers.
He said something interesting that just makes me feel rather sad:
If you can demonstrate to a commercial publisher that thousands of people are tuned in to your voice through social media and other channels, you have a good chance of getting published. In fact, more publishers are actually perusing the blogosphere to discover new authors.
Translation: you have to work to become a big blogger. Or a big Tweeter. Seriously. The wannabe writer in me is mourning. I don't want to sell myself that way. I am online enough; sometimes being online so much means I write less. Twitter is like a room full of people shouting as loudly as they can; I have to shout louder to be heard in order to be a Tweeter who is successful. I don't know if that's a good thing for me. Yeah, I know a couple of women who are big time bloggers and who have thousands reading them. I'm reading the book of one right now. I don't ever want to be like her because it is so apparent she flourishes in controversy and condescension.
My daughter will in all likelihood be published some day, but it may not be for commercial success. It will be in academic journals as she pursues her doctorate. No, there is no monetary success in that, and she may not have "thousands" of people reading her work, but she will write what she likes, and the focus will be less about popular opinion and more about the acceptance of peers. I'd rather write what I like and remain anonymous. I'll leave the getting published for those who can stand the process.
My goal is to write well and for the glory of God. If being published becomes like an idol to me, will I produce good writing?