Everyone knows how hard it is to get a book deal. JK Rowling is a prime example. Jo’s manuscript was rejected by 12 publishing houses before Bloomsbury gave her the break she desperately needed. While it is comforting to know that perseverance can pay off the brutal truth is that it is harder than ever to win a publishing contract. Many authors persevere for decades with little or no interest from publishers. When I decided to write a book I knew that I didn’t want to waste any time waiting for Jo’s luck to find me. Instead, I chose to be proactive and to get my book out into the world in as short a time as I could.
One option was to ‘self-publish’. Anyone with a computer connected to the internet can create an eBook and publish it online, but unless you are brilliant at self-promotion it is unlikely that your book will achieve more than a few hundred sales. That’s the advantage of a publishing deal – the publisher will have a vested interest in your book’s success and will put money into its promotion. If you don’t have time to hang around waiting to be discovered but want a ‘proper’ book deal there is another option: crowd funding.
Britain’s Next Bestseller (BNBS) is a new crowd funding platform for authors. Launched in March 2014, BNBS accepts completed, copy-edited manuscripts for consideration. If accepted, the author is offered a contract whereby the book is subject to a crowd funding campaign of 8-12 weeks. During the campaign period, the author must do all she can to attract pre-orders to achieve a pre-agreed target. I have been set a target of 12 weeks to achieve 250 pre-orders of my book ‘Get Your Public Speaking Mojo Back Forever! 50 imaginative ideas to help you communicate with confidence’.
When I reach my goal (and I have until 23rd June 2014 to do it), I’ll receive a worldwide publishing deal from BNBS, who will cover the costs of producing, distributing and promoting the book to help it to become a bestseller. I will receive 50% of the profit on each book sold. If you have access to a large network of people who are willing to buy your book without seeing it then crowd funding is perfect for you. You will need to create lots of web content to explain the content of your book and you may need to devote some energy to explaining the crowd funding model to your potential supporters (who won’t get the book until 12 weeks after you reach your target). If you don’t know many people and if you are not great at self-promotion you may struggle to meet your target. But for those who love the challenge of PR and having a goal to meet crowd funding could be the perfect solution!
Find out more about BNBS here: www.britainsnextbestseller.co.uk To support my book and find out more about how I have promoted it, visit www.juliehowell.co.uk/book Julie Howell – www.juliehowell.co.uk