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Top Ten Tips for Writers from a Publisher - Green Dragon Books

Top Ten Tips for Writers from a Publisher

Top Ten Tips for Writers from a Publisher

There are many types of writers, from novelists to web content to technical. Green Dragon often works with new and seasoned authors. It is important to know that you are entering a partnership and your work is not finished when the contract is signed. We want to share our top ten tips for getting published from the perspective of a publishing company.

  1. Read and Follow Submission Guidelines: As a reference, we included our submission guidelines. When pitching yourself to publishers, take time and carefully read the prerequisites. You’ll find relevant and helpful information. Before you send in your proposal, make sure your submission follows the guidelines listed. You have an opportunity to make a good first impression with editorial and acquisitions decision-makers.
  2. Understand Your Editor/Agent/Publisher’s Needs: Keep the lines of communication open, and if you have questions, don’t be afraid to ask. Take notes of discussions and save electronic communications to have as a reference. Do your best to meet your editor, agent, or publisher’s expectations. If you receive negative feedback, accept the criticism and roll with it.
  3. Be an Expert on Your Topic: Stay up to date and informed on any trends or shifts in your field. Know who the thought leaders are and be familiar with their work. Keep learning and consuming content on your primary topic. You can read, watch videos, attend conferences, and participate in online forums or discussions. Share your expertise with your readers or audience. Always be energetic, engaging, and insightful.
  4. Understand Your Audience: Many of us nowadays have social media profiles and a website. Create and share authentic content with your personal network, followers, and subscribers. Make yourself accessible and learn your audience. Study analytics and traffic from your digital footprint. Deep diving into data helps you better understand your audience and their interests. You can then work on content strategies and pivot if needed.
  5. Embrace Technology: Technology is constantly changing, and sometimes it can make your head spin. However, you need to embrace it and utilize it purposefully. With the internet, you now have a broader reach and can slowly build a global audience. If you’re struggling to catch up, there are free tutorials and resources online.
  6. Know Your Rights and Those of Others:  As a writer, it is vitally important to understand the basics and process of copyright law. Also, familiarize yourself with fair use. This legal document permits unlicensed use of copyrights in some instances. Always cite your references and resources to give them proper credit for their content. Plagiarism is not only inauthentic but can get you in hot water legally.
  7. Observe Deadlines and Schedules Remain cognizant and vigilant of any deadlines to ensure you don’t miss submitting work on time. Use a planner (print or digital) to access schedules and availability easily. Proper scheduling streamlines organization and increases productivity. Returns calls, emails, and messages promptly.
  8. Respect Boundaries of Communication Be mindful of the parties you’re collaborating with and communicate professionally. Be considerate of their time if you don’t have an emergency. Calling or texting in the dead of night isn’t really appropriate. Also, take into account different time zones in the United States and abroad. Be gracious and down to earth. High-maintenance people are often difficult to work with and can carry a bad rep.
  9. Be an All-Around Expert  Don’t stay stagnant and only have expertise in writing and one subject area; go beyond. When you know formatting and proper grammar, the editing process runs much smoother. Also, books don’t sell themselves; you need to market yourself and your content. Have confidence and do some self-promotion, but don’t go overboard. Ask your publisher for advice on coordinating your marketing efforts with theirs.
  10. Never, Ever Give Up The most cliché sayings on earth always turn out to be true. “Never, ever give up” on your writing. It’ll all make sense one day if you stay persistent.