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 I want to be upfront: I borrowed that headline. I saw it in the Los Angeles Times this morning and it started me thinking about how we, as writers, view ourselves. Actually, that’s not quite correct. I’ve been thinking about this ever since I joined a discussion on LinkedIn. It went something like this.

Author #1:How do you decide on your novel titles?
Author #2: I like to use lots of words.
Author #3: I like titles that keep people guessing.
Author #4: I hate publishers. They always change my titles.
Author #5: Publishers have no soul. They aren’t creative.
Me: I disagree. Publishers are creative in a different way, a business way. We should appreciate that and learn from it.
So, while we write, immersing ourselves in our fictional character’s lives and worlds, we are being artistic and creative. When we come up for air, we need to be something else. We need to be publishers: clear-eyed, objective, and strategic.
If it weren’t for traditional publishers taking a chance on me, investing in my art, offering me a platform for the work of my soul, I wouldn’t have grown as a writer. I still have every rejection and acceptance letter I ever received because reading them reminds me of why I failed as much as why I succeeded. I still can visualize every editorial letter that came in the mail (after 28 books, that’s a lot of letters). They outlined where I could do better: style, grammar, character development, transitional efforts, titles, plot and story. I still remember meetings with sales reps, buyers, distributors and realizing that at every level there was effort and money being spent on my behalf in ways that were corporately creative. I also know that the administrators did the research I could never do regarding an ever-changing marketplace.  Sure there were inequities.  Sure there were things I didn’t agree with but my interaction with the publishers, more than any writing lesson, taught me the true art of bringing my work to an audience.
Now that I’m indie, I wear a publisher’s hat. I can hire a freelance editor, a cover designer, and a formatter. I can even hire marketing experts to handle the last, critical part of the publishing puzzle. But if I do not understand and appreciate the creativity of the input they provide me –  a title that will cut through the ever-growing clutter, a cover image that is arresting even though it appears as a thumbnail, interesting ways to communicate with the marketplace –  then my money is wasted. I will never be able to truly control my own brand. 

When your book is finished and it’s time to publish, take off the rose colored glasses of an author and get out your publisher’s magnifying glass to assess the marketability of your work. Ask yourself “what would a publisher do?” I promise, if you answer that question honestly you will find avenues for success you never dreamed. In my book, that last step qualifies as creativity. That is the Art & Soul of  the business of publishing.

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A Slice of Orange started in 2004 as a group of authors from Orange County, California. We have expanded to include authors from around the globe–from the UK, all across the US to New Zealand. Our authors include the multi-published and writers at the beginning of their publishing career. In addition to authors, we feature blog posts from editors, PR professionals, and cover designers. The bright segments of the writing and reading community that make up one perfect entity—A Slice of Orange.
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A Slice of Orange started in 2004 as a group of authors from Orange County, California. We have expanded to include authors from around the globe–from the UK, all across the US to New Zealand. Our authors include the multi-published and writers at the beginning of their publishing career. In addition to authors, we feature blog posts from editors, PR professionals, and cover designers. The bright segments of the writing and reading community that make up one perfect entity—A Slice of Orange.
 I want to be upfront: I borrowed that headline. I saw it in the Los Angeles Times this morning and it started me thinking about how we, as writers, view ourselves. Actually, that’s not quite correct. I’ve been thinking about this ever since I joined a discussion on LinkedIn. It went something like this.
Author #1:How do you title your novel?
Author #2: I like to use lots of words.
Author #3: I like titles that keep people guessing.
Author #4: I hate publishers. They always change my titles.
Author #5: Publishers have no soul. They aren’t creative.
Me: I disagree. Publishers are creative in a different way, a business way. We should appreciate that and learn from it.
While we write, immersing ourselves in our fictional character’s lives and worlds, we are being artistic and creative. When we come up for air, we need to be something else. We need to be publishers: clear-eyed, objective, and strategic.
If it weren’t for traditional publishers taking a chance on me, investing in my art, offering me a platform for the work of my soul, I wouldn’t have grown as a writer. I still have every rejection and acceptance letter I ever received because reading them reminds me of why I failed as much as why I succeeded. I can visualize every editorial letter that came in the mail (pages long and single spaced) which outlined where I could do better: style, grammar, character development, transitional efforts, titles, plot and story. I still remember meetings with sales reps, buyers, distributors and realizing that at every level there was effort and money being spent on my behalf in ways that were corporately creative. I also know that there were administrators doing research I could never tap into regarding an ever-changing marketplace.  Sure there were inequities.  Sure there were things I didn’t agree with. But my interaction with the publishers, more than any writing lesson, taught me the true art of bringing my work to an audience. 
Now that I’m indie, I wear a publisher’s hat. I can hire a freelance editor, a cover designer, and a formatter. I can even hire marketing experts to handle the last, critical part of the publishing puzzle. But if I do not understand and appreciate the creativity of the input these people provide me –  a title that will cut through the ever-growing clutter, a cover image that is arresting even though it appears as a thumbnail, interesting ways to communicate with the marketplace –  then my money is wasted. I will never be able to truly control my own brand. 

So, when your book is finished and it’s time to publish, take off the rose colored glasses of an author and get out your publisher’s magnifying glass to assess the marketability of your work. Ask yourself “what would a publisher do?”. I promise, if you answer that question honestly you will find avenues for success you never dreamed. In my book, that last step qualifies as creativity. That is the Art & Soul of  the business of publishing.

  • Recent Posts
Author Details
A Slice of Orange started in 2004 as a group of authors from Orange County, California. We have expanded to include authors from around the globe–from the UK, all across the US to New Zealand. Our authors include the multi-published and writers at the beginning of their publishing career. In addition to authors, we feature blog posts from editors, PR professionals, and cover designers. The bright segments of the writing and reading community that make up one perfect entity—A Slice of Orange.
Tag: On Sale

Books on sale or free

THE GHOST OF DEPFORD HALL

Buy now!
THE GHOST OF DEPFORD HALL

THE COUNTERFEIT LADY

Buy now!
THE COUNTERFEIT LADY

A DRAKENFALL CHRISTMAS

Buy now!
A DRAKENFALL CHRISTMAS

CITY OF BLAZE

Buy now!
CITY OF BLAZE

THE CHRISTMAS PIANO TREE

Buy now!
THE CHRISTMAS PIANO TREE

A SOLDIER’S ITALIAN CHRISTMAS

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A SOLDIER’S ITALIAN CHRISTMAS

COWBOY KARMA

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ILONA’S WOLF

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LET IT SNOW

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GIRL IN THE MIST

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HAGAR’S LAST DANCE

Buy now!
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HOSTILE WITNESS

Buy now!
HOSTILE WITNESS
THE DAY BAILEY DEVLIN’S HOROSCOPE CAME TRUE

#PLEASE SAY YES

Buy now!
#PLEASE SAY YES

LOVE ME TENDER

Buy now!
LOVE ME TENDER

GIRLFRIENDS & SECRETS

Buy now!
GIRLFRIENDS & SECRETS

THE FIX UP

Buy now!
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SUPERHERO IN DISGUISE

Buy now!
SUPERHERO IN DISGUISE
Tag: 2018

A LEAP INTO LOVE

Buy now!
A LEAP INTO LOVE

THE COUNTERFEIT LADY

Buy now!
THE COUNTERFEIT LADY

ASCENT OF ICE

Buy now!
ASCENT OF ICE

SLICK DEAL

Buy now!
SLICK DEAL

GLIMPSE

Buy now!
GLIMPSE

BEYOND DANGER

Buy now!
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SECOND CHANCE SOLDIER

Buy now!
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GRAVESIDE REUNION

Buy now!
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COURTED BY A COWBOY

Buy now!
COURTED BY A COWBOY

SURPRISED BY A BABY

Buy now!
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RESCUED BY A RANCHER

Buy now!
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TEMPTED BY A TEXAN

Buy now!
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SECRET RELATIONS

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THIS MAGIC MOMENT

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Buy now!
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LOVE ME TENDER

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DESPERATE DESIRE

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LOVE NOTES

PICK AND CHEWS

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THE SHORT & SWEET OF IT: When the Right Word Is a Short Word
×
A Slice of Orange started in 2004 as a group of authors from Orange County, California. We have expanded to include authors from around the globe–from the UK, all across the US to New Zealand. Our authors include the multi-published and writers at the beginning of their publishing career. In addition to authors, we feature blog posts from editors, PR professionals, and cover designers. The bright segments of the writing and reading community that make up one perfect entity—A Slice of Orange.

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