A few days ago, I turned in my latest review assignment for The Writer: a piece on Stephen Markley’s Publish This Book: The Unbelievable True Story of How I Wrote, Sold, and Published This Very Book (Sourcebooks, 2010). You’ll have to wait a bit for the review to appear in the magazine, but in the meantime, I thought I’d share with you an interesting promotion I discovered on the Sourcebooks site when I was double-checking some information:
So you work on your manuscript for months, carefully craft a proposal and pitch letter, and send out your heart and soul to agents and publishers. And what do you get in return? A form letter saying “Thank you for your submission, but it does not meet our needs at this time.” Really?
We at Sourcebooks and Julie A. Hill and Associates know how you feel. Well, now we know, thanks to Stephen Markley and his hilarious, innovative, and amazing new memoir Publish This Book. You see, sick of getting rejections that say nothing, Stephen decided to cut to the chase and write a memoir about how hard it is to get a book published. And then try to get that book published—a book about its own creation.
Crazy, right? Well, he convinced us, getting agent representation from Julie Hill of Julie A. Hill and Associates and finally publication by Sourcebooks. And after reading his whole manuscript, we see how hard it is for you out there. So in honor of Stephen’s achievement, and all aspiring writers, we’ve decided to tear down the walls that keep writers from honest and helpful feedback about their work from the publishing industry. That means: no more form letters, but an actual critique of your submission from an agent or publishing company
How Does It Work?
1. Purchase a copy of Publish This Book.
2. Between March 9, 2010 and May 9, 2010 submit your proposal along with a proof of purchase (receipt, order confirmation, etc.) via the form below or by email.
3. Wait 2-6 months (While you’re waiting, why not read your new copy of Publish This Book? It’s amazing.)
4. Receive a 2-4 paragraph critique of your submission.
I know–you still have to buy the book, which contradicts the no-fee opportunity policy I normally follow here and in the newsletter. And in an ideal world, you’d get to read my review before deciding to buy the book. But it’s something to look into. And it’s a clever promotional idea that might inspire some others.