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The Secrets Behind Book Publishing

With authors, agents, and editors from Knopf, HarperCollins, Random House and The New York Times Book Review

2. Highlights from the Panel

Table of Contents

  1. Crib Sheet (PDF) PDF
    Download this outline and use it to take notes. Includes resources and other information.
  2. Highlights from the Panel FREE!
  3. Introductions (7:43) 7:43 FREE!
    Jessica Eule of introduces moderator Susan Shapiro. Shapiro introduces the panel of agents, editors, and authors.
  4. Research before writing: How much is enough? (12:30) 12:30 FREE!
    The panel tackles the issue of pre-writing research and how research can affect an author's decision to start a project.
  5. Would agents rather see a proposal or read the entire finished memoir? (13:05) 13:05 FREE!
    Shapiro gives examples of two of her students who got substantial advances by writing short proposals for their memoirs, which were subsequently published. The panel talks about what the industry prefers.
  6. Tricks of the trade (6:41) 6:41 FREE!
    Do the agents and editors on the panel prefer a finished manuscript before purchasing a book (either fiction or non-fiction)? Is getting part of your work published in a magazine or some other publication helpful in selling a book? Do agents look for new voices in smaller publications?
  7. Is it best to use an agent or fly solo? (13:59) 13:59 FREE!
    The panelists discuss when to use an agent and how to find the right agent for your project. They cover how to market your book and how to determine what category it falls into. Finally, they explain what an author can do to make it easier to sell a book and how much advance blurbs help.
  8. Making your writing publication-ready (7:17) 7:17 FREE!
    From classes, ghost editors, and mentors to just plain ol' obsessive revision, the panelists offer their suggestions for making your writing publication-ready.
  9. Juggling a full-time job and writing a book (14:45) 14:45 FREE!
    The panel gives ideas about how to make a living while writing or waiting for your book to be published. They also provide tips on how to manage the work-life balance, especially if you're a parent. With additional information on how to find an agent.
  10. Audience questions: Self-publishing (8:29) 8:29 FREE!
    Questions from the audience about self-publishing: Will agents and editors review self-published books? What are some tips for self-publishing? Are there any publishing houses that will take on self-published books?
  11. More audience questions: Variety pack (11:02) 11:02 FREE!
    Audience members want to know: Is the short story dead? How relevant are blogs to getting published? Are book tours dead? Is it good to send your manuscript to several agents? Are photography and art books handled differently than narrative tomes?
  12. Final audience questions (9:46) 9:46 FREE!
    Are book tours dead? Do agents specialize in art and photography? How do you sell your book project if you get your project to an editor or agent?

Video Details

While newspapers and magazines in this country are losing pages, the book business is thriving, with about 200,000 books published last year -- 10,000 more than the year before. How do you get your manuscript or proposal out of the rejection pile so you can join the ranks of published authors?

This panel of distinguished agents, editors, and authors is for at writers interested in breaking into the publishing business with their first book, and seasoned journalists, reviewers, and authors curious about the behind-the-scenes secrets of the publishing process. We'll cover the most common mistakes new authors make, how many pages you need to approach an agent, if it ever makes sense to go directly to editors or to self-publish. What determines the advance, buzz, and publicity campaign behind a book? And -- aside from praying, bribing or sleeping your way to the middle -- what exactly writers can do to enhance their chances of getting a book deal.

10 videos
1 hour, 43 minutes total running time

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