Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Mysterious Envelope

Yesterday, I decided to open the mysterious red and yellow envelope that a messenger service had placed on my porch. I tore open the flap and pulled out a thick clump of paper. There was a letter on top.

“We are excited to have the opportunity to issue you a formal offer for your children’s book. You are among the 4% chosen out of tens of thousands each year to become published with our company. We believe this will be a marketable book. It is our pleasure to present you with this contract.”

Five seconds of pleasure filled my heart. Then I turned the page and read further.

(Not an exact quote) The publisher will provide (approx) $20,000 in resources to produce, market and distribute your Work. The author participation fee is: (approx) $4,000.

Okay readers….This is called Subsidy publishing. (Many of you are already familiar with this term.) A Subsidy publisher is a book publisher who charges the author to publish her book, as opposed to a royalty publisher who pays the author. Subsidy publishing is good for some authors, but may not be good for others…especially if they don’t have any money! Authors who speak and sell their books at their engagements, often “self-publish” or “subsidy publish”…because they know they can make their investment back.

Now if I had an extra $4,000, this might be good for me. But I don’t. So I will bounce this book out again. Sigh.

If you are thinking about doing some writing, it’s essential you pick up a Writer’s Market. Here are two choices:

Christian Writers’ Market Guide 2007 by Sally E. Stuart
(If you wish to write for the Christian market, this is a must.)

2007 Writer’s Market edited by Robert Lee Brewer

Inside these books you will find valuable advice about publishers, their needs and how to submit your work. You will also be able to discern between subsidy and royalty publishers. (Some publishers are both!)

Thanks for stopping in today. I'll be back on Monday. There's a deep blue sky out there, and I'm going for a walk. It's been awhile since I've talked to any of our neighbors. I wonder who I will see?


Pat said...

Hi Sharon,

This would be a great article for "Spirit-Led Writer." I think you should query Lisa about it!

My guess is lots of your "thoughts" will make great articles.

Your critique group writer friend,

Rebekah said...

This is a great idea! I just learned something about subsidy publishing and royalty publishing! I like the picture and intro on your blog, also!
Thanx for sharing!

Janey Loree said...

Thank you for the tip on buying the Christian Writer's Market Guide. We have written a children's book and I need all the help I can get to get it published.

Sharon Lynne said...

Congrats on completing a children's book! There are more posts coming about writing. Consider attending a writer's conference where children's book editors are present. Get to know them!

Janey Loree said...

Thanks for the advise. I take it that the writer's conference info is in the book?!

Sharon Lynne said...

Yes. The book lists conferences and workshops. One of the best conferences in California is:
However, you should call first and see if there are going to be any editors willing to look at Children's Books.