Human Resources for an Author
Authors Need People Too!
An Author is often thought of as a one man (or woman) show. Of course, this is a myth. Although an author wears many hats, an author still needs other people to help make his or her book writing ventures successful.
Consider Your Needs as an Author and as a Human Being
You, the author, are the number one person on your human resource team. It is important that you know your own strengths and your own weaknesses so that you can optimize your own skills so that you are able to know when it is best to put off certain aspects of your projects onto another member of the team.
What are you good at doing? What do you enjoy doing? Sometimes, for the best results, it pays to hire someone else to do the work for you.
Also, learn to take care of yourself. Get the right foods, exercise, and rest.
Allow Content Editors to Edit Content
Once you have written your project and edited it to the best of your own ability, it is a good idea to send your work to individuals who will look at the book as a whole and discover whether your writing make sense and if the content is accurate. In fiction, these individuals look for problems in the story line, keep an eye on mistakes made concerning characterizations and the like.
Sometimes you can find friends or family look over what you have written. It certainly helps if you know which family or friends will tell you what you want to hear, and those who will tell you the truth. Get the individuals who will tell you the truth and wait to show the book to those who tell you what you want to hear for after you have published. Ask those individuals to write your first reviews.
Have Proofreaders Other Than Yourself
Proofreaders are the individuals who look at paragraph and sentence structure as well as spelling and grammar.
Often these people are your writing friends who may also need someone to check over these issues in their own work. As the author, you may not always be able to pick up on your own errors while your writer friends may have the same difficulty with their work. Trade stories and check out your friends copy while they check out yours. Just be certain that these individuals are actually individuals who have the proper editing skills.
Hire a Cover Designer to Design your Covers
Once your manuscript is as you would like it, it is time to design the cover. These individuals have a special talent for designing your books cover.
This might be one of those aspects of your novel that you probably should leave to a professional, but if you're lucky, you may have a friend who can do it for you for a little copy work to barter for this skill and talent.
The Agent-Your Representative to the Publishing Company
This is the person who represents you to the publishing company.To find an agent, you will first need to write a query letter. A query letter is a short letter that describes your work. Target agents who represent your genre, but avoid agents who previously represented something extremely/eerily similar to yours. Google information about specific agents. If you can, find their specific submission guidelines. Follow the agent's submission guidelines to the letter. Query widely but limit your query to one agent per agency. Be patient. An agent's motto is usually "don't call us, we'll call you."
Be certain that the agent is a good fit for you. Never give money to secure an agent. Reputable agents are paid out of your earnings once published and never up front.
Publisher Publishes Your Book
This is the person or persons who publish your book. In traditional publishing, the publisher also makes certain that distribution occurs through the usual print distribution channels. Today, some also take responsibility with e-book sales as well.
An Indie writer is essentially in charge of his or her own publication and distribution although often the indie writer can hire others to do his or her distribution piecemeal.
An author needs to be certain that he or she understand the publishing contract. Especially with first time authors, it is easy to give away too much of the book rights simply to get the book into print. It helps to have an attorney that specializes in book contracts to look over and explain the contract before signing.
Reviewers Let Others Know How Good Your Book Really Is
These are the people who read what you have written and let the public know what they think of it.
Those friends and family who love absolutely everything you write should be given copies of your book and asked to write reviews online or in print for the local newspaper. You can also get other writers to review your work on their blogs or other areas on the internet. In addition, your agent or publisher or publicist may put your work out for professional reviewers to review.
Publicists Are Your Public Relations Person
These are the people who line up interviews for the author with radio, the internet, television, and blog tours. These people line up the books signing tours. The publicist's primary responsibility is to write your press releases and distribute them to media sources.
Other Miscellaneous Staff
Other staff that an author needs includes legal representation, an accountant, a photographer, a makeup artist hair stylists, and a fashionista for in personal appearances and visual media, In addition, other people that may be needed could include transcriptionists, mentors, coaches, speech critics, and the list goes on of people who can help you put out and market your book. No one is an island and, as you can see, authors are no exception.
© 2013 Donna Brown
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