How to get my book in bookstores
How to Sell Your Books in an Indie BookstoreImagine that you are an author. You've just received a shipment of your first published book from your printer or POD publisher. You admire your book, hold it, fondle it and do your best to keep from dancing around the room. Some of you do dance around the room—I did. I even broke out a bottle of champagne. You head for the nearest mega-bookstore to experience the thrill of seeing your books shelved there next to America's bestsellers.
5 Guaranteed Ways to Get Your Book into Bookstores
While many indie authors have mastered online sales, even strong-selling writers tend to see distribution to libraries and bricks-and-mortar stores as difficult to impossible. However, they should consider giving it another go. Industry experts and indie authors who have tried to get wider distribution have recently found surprising success—both in expanded availability and greater awareness of their work. Getting this sort of support from both libraries and bookstores is not the impossible task that many self-published authors imagine. But it does take a careful approach, speaking to the right people in the right way, and working to build relationships over the long term, rather than just making a few quick sales. Often, the first step to getting into a library or bookstore is to go speak to someone in person.
For a lot of self-publishing authors, getting their books into big-chain bookshops can seem as impossible as hitting a space station with a sling-shot. There is something of a validation in walking into a bookshop, especially a big-chain branch, and spying your book on the shelf. But as indies, with corporate structure and head office guidelines, that shelf can often seem a million miles away. I hold regular signings and events at a large number of branches across the South and the Midlands — around twenty so far in the past year. Fact No.
Those sacred bastions of literary excellence. Along with libraries and coffee shops, bookstores are a haven for authors. Online shopping with sites like Amazon and Etsy is cheap and easy. And you can find exactly the item book you want with no fuss and no browsing. Add to the online marketplace print-on-demand, which pairs with digital retail perfectly. Today authors can publish with very little if any initial investment. They can see their book listed alongside widely read and well-known authors on the web.
In the past, getting independent booksellers to shelve self-published books was a difficult prospect. Indie booksellers were reluctant to sell self-published books, based on the old bias that self-published meant poor content or poor quality. So just how do you go about selling.
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A first assumption is that you have a national distributor who enters your book into the Ingram and Baker and Taylor retail distribution systems. Here are some tips that worked for me:. Not finding it listed, I discussed the necessary steps to make it happen. Each year, the Barnes and Noble Small Press Department reviews more than , submissions from publishers of every size and background. Most of these books are added to our book database and a small order is placed for our warehouse.
In the past, getting independent booksellers to shelve self-published books was a difficult prospect. But that was then and this is now. Not only have self-published authors upped their game when it comes to content, but the quality of self-published books is highly competitive with those of traditionally published books. So just how do you go about selling your book to independent bookstores? Much as writing books is a passion and business for authors, selling books is a passion and the only business for independent booksellers.