“Adams has a long history of making authors out of first-timers. We don’t turn away people because they decided to do the legwork themselves,” Jennifer Kushnier from Adams Media tells Rachel Kramer Bussel:
On your Publisher’s Marketplace page, you also state that “the author’s first-person p.o.v. should speak to women in their 20s, 30s, or 40s. Authors should have a platform, be mediagenic, write with flair, and present a fresh angle to these crowded categories.” Can you elaborate on the qualities you’re looking for in your authors? For those without a platform, is starting a blog or Web site to build a following a good idea?
A blog or Web site is a terrific way to get started. That’s not to say that it takes only a blog to secure a book deal, but we like to see that sort of ingenuity and willingness to be in public. We like that little extra bit of exposure, something that shows the author has a following of readers or viewers. Being well-spoken and easy in front of the camera only enhances their appeal. Because our Polka Dot authors are almost always speaking from their own experiences, reading a Polka Dot book is like getting together with a group of your funniest, smartest girlfriends — even better, the authors have “been there, done that” and can offer real solutions. Finally, a book can have a great package and solid promotion, but what ultimately matters is that the book be well-written, entertaining, and useful. When I consider whether a proposal has Polka Dot potential, I consider if any of the leading women’s magazines could pluck a passage from it and run it in an issue. It’s a little bit hip, a little bit clever, and usually a little bit rebellious.