Kendra's No Fluff Guide to Being a Writer
*Write a book.
*Make the book not-lame.
*Make the book into something pretty good.
*Make the book awesome.
*Research agents or publishers that are looking for the kind of book you wrote. Find out their guidelines
and follow these guidelines. Spell everyone’s name correctly. Be confident in your book. Send as many
queries to APPROPRIATE people as possible.
*Create and maintain a website or blog with helpful, interesting information that people will want to read. It’
s your choice what that information might be. Make sure updates about your writing are mentioned
occasionally (“I’m halfway done writing this book!” “I’m sending out queries for my novel!” “Tonight I drank
whiskey for three hours and then cried at my cat” etc).
*Go to events relating to your book’s subject or industry events. Examples: for nonfiction authors about
dogs, consider attending local pet charity events and handing out business cards with your name and
website. For spec fic, consider attending conventions for sci-fi and fantasy fans. Talk to as many people
as possible, hand out business cards, collect business cards and introduce yourself as a novelist that is in
the process of selling your book.
*Write articles and smaller pieces that can be published online or in magazines, always using the same
byline, and always ask for your website address to be included.
*Introduce yourself to people as an author. Naming it makes it so.
18 months prior to publication: Follow the last four steps of the above section.
12 months prior to publication: Follow the last four steps of the above section, but upgrade your materials
to include bookmarks (if you have them) with your book’s cover art and information. Pass these out at
every possible opportunity. Ask events if you can host a “panel” talking about subjects relative to your life
experience (writing, getting published, fixing clocks, taking a Siamese cat for walks on a leash in Central
Park, whatever). After the panel, make sure to have business cards or bookmarks to give to attendees.
Make friends with people online. Talk to bloggers. Use twitter if you haven’t been already been doing so.
Talk about your book until your family/loved ones/friends threaten to punch you in the face.
6 months prior to publication: Same as above. Social media is a great thing to build at this point. You want
a platform of people who are excited about your book. The best way to do that is to talk to people on the
internet, especially through twitter. Set up a facebook page for your book and invite people to like it.
3 months prior to publication: Make sure that someone (even if it’s you) has compiled a list of local
bookstores who might be interested in having you as a guest in their store. Your publisher will be
arranging a blog tour at this point for your book, so set aside a lot of time to write guest posts and answer
interview questions. If you know anyone in radio, newspapers or television, now is the time to call in those
old favors and ask for appearances on anything and everything you can get in your local area.
Book release! Enjoy!
Post book release checklist
Continue meeting people, introducing yourself as a writer, giving out information about you and your book
and securing appearances in local venues. Get some sleep, too.
Oh and make sure to thank all of the people around you, because by this point they will need it.