Monday, November 29, 2004

Recommended Resources (periodically updated)

I'm currently reading the "Guerrilla Marketing" book for authors - it's excellent. One of the co-authors is Michael Larson, who's written two other books I swear by - one on writing book proposals and one on finding a literary agent (or being one for yourself). All three books have been published by Writer's Market Books, and I recommend all three quite highly.

I've just re-joined Pub-Forum, a discussion list for publishers and those affiliated with publishers. It comes with a recommended reading list that I'd like to endorse here:

They recommend you read a book such as The Self Publishing Manual by Dan Poynter
1001 Ways to market Your Books by John Kremer

"The Publishing Game: Publish a Book in 30 Days" (self publishing)

"The Publishing Game: Find an Agent in 30 Days" (literary agents)

"The Publishing Game: Bestseller in 30 Days" (book promotion)

And to check these last three out at:

They also recommend you visit some of the many excellent publishing websites (such as",,,

As someone who's worked with four publishing companies (I just signed with my 4th), who's promoted or coached dozens of authors, and who's written (and promoted) 9 published non-fiction books, I think all of these sources have real merit.

As I come across other resources, I'll be sure to let you know about them.


Why in the world you might want to consider my book-marketing advice

By Ned Barnett (c) 2004

After first being published in 1972 (Air Classics Magazine, June '72), I really got started with publishers and publishing in '74, when - as a magazine editor for South Carolina Economic Trends - I was drafted to edit books on economic development for the University of South Carolina Press (this was considered part of the job).

Editing a book on coastal aquaculture was about as much fun as it sounds, but it was still a useful, in-the-trenches introduction into publishing. In that same job, when my assistant took a new job, I spent three months typesetting and laying out the magazine (along with all the brochures and other publications put out by a fairly prolific state agency). That gave me further in-the-trenches experience - and a great deal of respect for typesetters and layout artists.

I also managed to stab myself with an X-Acto knife while doing a cover (trimming amberlith) - when my boss burst in on me. Gave him a good laugh, and I was lucky enough to not bleed on the design (otherwise I'd have to re-do it). I was on deadline, so I wrapped my punctured digit with a brown industrial-strength paper towel and masking tape, then got right back to it.

About six years later, I was asked to write the first of 9 non-fiction books that I've had published since '82 - most of them on public relations and marketing. The promotion of them, and the publishing arrangements I had with various publishers, got me consulting or staff positions with three different small publishers in the 1985-1995 time-frame (I've just signed as a client my fourth small publisher) . In each case, I was involved with strategic and tactical marketing and promotion for the publishers and for their books (including my own). That really got me started in promoting books and authors, and proved great experience.

Along the way, one of the publishers also drafted me into the role of paste-up artist ... and true to form, I once again did it - this time I managed to cut off the tip of my finger (not seriously - it grew back) while trimming amberlith - and in doing so, I once again managed to avoid bleeding on the layout page (quite an accomplishment, I assure you). So I've spent my time in the publishing trenches, and literally have the scars to prove it.

Later, once I'd healed up , in '88, and in partnership with my wife (a former editor herself, and recently the author of her first published novel, The Kelly Incident - Gate-Way Publishing, 2004), I began a literary agency that we operated (along with other business interests) until 1995. I still work with the occasional author as an agent - usually as a favor to a friend or client.

Earlier this year, I began a new book on promoting and marketing books - this began as an article - published on my PR blog and aimed at publicists who had suddenly acquired authors as clients (I wrote this at the request of a colleague who'd just had his employer decide to self-publish a book, and he knew he was in over his head). I have refocused the book toward an author-oriented readership - a few of my key concepts can be found in a fairly long article (published on another of my blog-sites): Top-Ten Bottom Line Tips for Self-Promoting Authors How to Effectively Promote Your Book ... and Yourself ... For Fun and Profit!

This forthcoming book - based on that article - is very much a work in progress, and if you choose to check it out, I'd be very grateful for your feedback, comments, additional insights I missed, mistakes you think I made, etc. I can be reached at