What Not to Say When Trying to Sell Your Book

You’ve written your book and now you’re hoping to sell it to an agent or publisher. Most likely you’re not a salesperson by nature, so here are some things you should never say when trying to sell your book.

  • There’s no other book like it. Sorry to disappoint you, but there’s always another book like it. Your job is to show the agent or publisher why your book differs from the others in the market. It could be the characterization. It could be a new way to approach the nonfiction topic. If you want to sell your book, you need to show how your book compares to what’s already similar (and successful) to what people are buying.
  • This book will sell itself in the marketplace. Again, this simply isn’t realistic. James Patterson’s books are about as close as you can come to books selling themselves, yet even he markets his books (I saw him in a television commercial just the other day).
  • The audience is anyone who reads. Once more the answer is nope, not so. I read a lot, but I don’t read everything and neither does anyone else. Your job when selling your book is the same as it is when writing it–understand who your core reader is and know your specific audience.

Remember not to say these three things when selling your book and you may improve your success rate. Happy writing!


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