Keller Media Blog

By Wendy Keller, Literary Agent and Chief Talent Launcher

Thinking about writing a book but not quite sure whether it is a good use of your time? Have you heard “bad” things about self-publishing…about publishers…about literary agents?

If you have an inkling that you might want to write a nonfiction book on the subject of your expertise, here are the three biggest benefits our authors tend to get:

1. New Customers to Your Products or Services

A book is an almost magical process. The marketing spin you will get from a book is unlike anything you can get – anywhere else – no matter how much money and time you pump into social media or formal advertising.

A very successful author called me today. We’ve done two books together. (I’m a literary agent. I sell nonfiction books to publishers on behalf of authors.)

Dave said, “Wendy, I’m ready to write a third.”

I asked him why.

He said, “My company is launching a new product. There’s nothing like a book to give you that extra credibility and marketing boost. I plan to use the book to promote the next product to my existing clients.”

I expect to have it sold in January, if not sooner. His book proposal (the critical sales document that every nonfiction agent must use to present a nonfiction project to publishers) will be ready in about a month.

2. Extreme career prestige

Lots of people may know how to do some or all of what you do, but when you literally “wrote the book,” you put yourself in a rare category. What HR person or hiring committee can resist someone with that level of confidence and knowledge?

It’s a lot easier to get a legitimate publisher (read: one who pays you, not one you pay!) if you have a strong idea, a “platform” in place and a great nonfiction proposal. (Click here to find out how to write a proposal)

If you’re looking for work, looking to move up a level, or trying to set yourself apart from your colleagues or competitors, a published book could be your single best move ever!

3. Start a Business

Got an idea that you’d like to start a business one day? Do you want to found that new business on your expertise, your passion, your favorite hobby? Writing a book is a fantastic way to ease out of your day job (and get paid for it!) while you prepare.

Perhaps best of all, a book’s production cycle will give you a year to make the transition – but even a year is a deadline.

The Process of Getting Published

Excited by this article? Eager to transform into a published author with a book that will give you a tangible benefit? Here are the steps:

  1. Come up with 1-3 solid ideas for a book
  2. Write a terrific book proposal (Want some help with that? Click here.)
  3. Select a literary agent who has sold in the past and is still selling in the present books like yours. (Want some help with that? Click here.)
  4. Work with your agent to improve your book proposal, if requested.
  5. Let your agent sell it to a publisher while you watch the magic
  6. Hurray! Cash the publisher’s check!
  7. Write the book
  8. Promote the book
  9. Reap the benefits

Really, that’s all there is to it. There are plenty of people along the way who will help you.

The first step is your knowledge – and the courage to transform a good but fuzzy idea into action!

Wendy Keller is the “Chief Talent Launcher” at Keller Media, Inc., a leading US nonfiction literary agency.

Leave a Reply