Innovating Through Artistry

The Journey of Selling a Book

In ENTREPRENEUR THE ARTS, Entrepreneurial Tool Box, The Idea, Writing on April 23, 2008 at 12:09 am

As many of you know, from reading my blog, I have climbed several tall mountains and swam the distance between two continents writing, developing, editing and securing an agent for my book. And yet, I still must do more to demonstrate to six remaining publishers that my book Build a Blue Bike: Ride Your Artistic Blues to Creative and Financial Freedom, is one they MUST decide to BUY and publish.

For those of you who are little unclear about the publishing process, let me remind you: If you wish to publish a book you write, you can seek out small publishers directly to see if they are interested, or of course, you can simply decide to self publish. However, if you wish to land a household name big publishing house to pick up your work, who has the marketing muscle and distribution savvy to get your book into Borders (never mind that they might file for bankruptcy for the moment), then you must be represented by an agent. Only agents can talk to household name publishers, which means you have to be one of the roughly 3% of book proposal submissions they accept to represent.

I have managed to jump through that hoop, and I have a great agent, Susan Schulman. I know she will do a fine job selling my book once our economy perks back up. It might as well require a new president who values the arts, one with democratic stripes, to get it sold. So in the meantime, I have been working hard to add a new leg or arm to my strategy to continue to strengthen my possibilities of getting my work finally published.

My newest strategy has been to take an online marketing course by Peggy McColl and Randy Gilbert. These two individuals are considered to be the gurus of online marketing and are wildly successful at it both with their own books and with helping others. Of course, my purpose in taking this class is to build my knowledge of how to get my book to sell well through various distribution channels I can develop once it is published. However, since it has not been sold yet, and therefore is not yet in print, I have been working hard trying to come up with a strategy to be able to use what I am learning from this class now.

With the blessings of Susan Schulman, my agent, I am in the process of creating an E-Book, which will be called Starving Artist Not!: Changing History One Artist at A Time. This E-Book will be a resource guide of artistic entrepreneurs across the country that offer classes, workshops, mentoring programs or any other artist entrepreneurial service for sale. This resource guide will allow those of you interested in arts entrepreneurship, but not sure who to turn to or where to start, to have a deep resource filled with ideas, contacts and useful information.

I am currently in the process of building it and welcome comments, as well as the names of any artists you know that I should include!

There are days I wake up and wonder if all of this work is worth it.

But that thought rarely lasts more then a moment, because I know my journey is worth the tough climb. I know I am and will continue to make a difference with the vision I have to teach artists to become more entrepreneurial and resourceful.

I am just grateful that pursuing your passions, like falling in love, offers us blindness or a kind of naiveté to problems or difficulties we will surely encounter, and that under any other circumstance we would likely see. This offers each one of us a form of self protection- an insulation from reality that we need to act in the first place.

But when you really love something or someone you will climb every mountain and swim every ocean needed to make it work if your feelings are real– no matter how hard it is or how much work it takes.

So which ocean shall I swim and which mountain next must I climb?

  1. […] Entrepreneur The Arts wrote an interesting post today on The Journey of Selling a BookHere’s a quick excerptI know she will do a fine job selling my book once our economy perks back up, and perhaps it might take until we have a new president with democratic stripes as w ell to get that to occur…. […]

  2. Pleasing to see that you have considered using both traditional and Internet publishing. Of course your comments raise the question of what happens to the other 97% of authors who do not succeed initially.

    That’s why we built a readers and writers community around our e-books site at and have ensured that new authors retain ownership of their work at all times. So it leaves the door open to attract a print publisher in the future.

    (Love this site – by the way)

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