How To Increase Your Chances of Landing That Book Deal

While it may seem that my life revolves around short-form magazine pieces about vibrators and low libido, what some of you may not know is that — once upon a time — I worked full-time for a book publisher, weeding through book proposals, drawing up author contracts, and developing marketing/publicity plans.

And so, while I’ve not yet courted traditional authorship myself, I do sometimes help clients with book proposal preparation and lit agent research.

In fact, as I’ve learned from working on several ebooks for Good in Bed, it’s a pretty short leap from being a short-form freelance writer to putting together an entire book. Which is why I thought some of you might be interested in 77 Reasons Why Your Book Was Rejected {and how to be sure it won’t happen again!}.

Because perhaps you have a book in you, too?

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Freelancedom Book Club Discussion: The Wealthy Freelancer

Now that we’re back to business as usual here at Freelancedom, it’s time to focus on the important stuff: Taking our businesses to the next level. Elevating them beyond mere hobbies so that they’re legitimate sources of income. Becoming wealthy freelancers, no matter what wealth means to you.

I had seen lots of online love for Steve Slaunwhite, Pete Savage, and Ed Gandia’s The Wealthy Freelancer before I broke down and picked up my own copy. Why did I wait so long? Being a raging book nerd, with a particular love for self-help-y career titles, I had started to feel as if none of the books I was reading had anything new to say.

The Wealthy Freelancer exceeded my expectations by… well… a lot. As I mentioned in a related post, the book is so much more than inspirational mumbo jumbo. Rather, it contains concrete tips and step-by-step instructions for making it work.

I’m curious to hear if you loved it as much as I did, and whether or not it had anything new to teach you. Just as with last time, I’d love for you to share your thoughts in the comments section of this post, in addition to your responses to the following questions:

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Freelancedom Book Club: The Wealthy Freelancer

The very first session of the Freelancedom Book Club didn’t go as I’d hoped, but I saw it coming. As soon as I opened my copy of The It Factor and started reading, my first thought was : Oh crap. What have I done!? This man is insufferable!

But this month will be different. I promise you. I’ve already started reading my next pick — The Wealthy Freelancer: 12 Secrets to a Great Income and an Enviable Lifestyle – and it has me excited. Twenty-five pages in and I’m already 100 percent sure I’m going to love it.


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Freelancedom Book Club Discussion: The It Factor

When I chose The It Factor last month as our first book club book, I didn’t really expect to be so put off by it. The Amazon reviews were, for the most part, overwhelmingly positive, and its subject matter was one that — as an introvert with social anxiety — I couldn’t get enough of.

But the book  made me angry. Why? The author seemed to have little respect for the readers he was trying to help, blaming their inability to connect with other people on arrogance and laziness.

Is it just me? Is my resentment warranted? Am I just not the intended audience for this book?

Either way, I still felt as if the book contained a lot that was worth discussing. So without further adieu…

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Freelancedom Book Club: The It Factor

Last month, I asked if you’d be interested in participating in a Freelancedom Book Club. You responded with a resounding YES. Obviously, I’m among my people. 🙂

As it’s the first week of June, I wanted to announce my first book club selection:

Mark Wiskup’s The It Factor: Be the One People Like, Listen To, and Remember.

I chose it because I feel that building a strong professional network is so crucial to freelance success, and because — as an introvert — I’m always looking for ways in which I can improve my in-person communication skills.

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How To Put Together A Kick-Ass Press Kit

The following is an excerpt from Cinnamon McCann’s Self-Publishing in Stilettos.

In reading through my review copy, I felt that the step-by-step, how-to content was definitely valuable for anyone considering the self-publication route. But what I was most struck by was the section on press kits and press releases, as putting these together is something I feel many freelancers don’t know a lot about. And if you’re trying to promote an information product, a copywriting biz, or any other type of product or service, it can be an important skill to have.

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Spill It: What Does Your Fantasy Coworking Space Look Like?

Since leaving YourTango, I’ve used the past two months to take a really close look at my career coaching business, trying to figure out what I want to focus on, which products and services I want to take off the table, which I want to add (if any), and where I want this whole career coaching thing to go.

The first sentence of the bio I wrote for the YEC site was telling: “Steph Auteri is the founder of Career Coaching for Word Nerds, a company created with an eye toward building a community of fellow word nerds and publishing professionals who can share stories, experiences, tips, and resources with their peers, and also connect with established experts within the industry.”

It made me realize that — as much as I enjoy one-on-one coaching — I’d really like to make my coaching biz a community.

And so, the germ of a (possibly ridiculous) dream was born: To one day open up a coworking space / cafe that also holds regular literary and networking events.

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Do You Want To Join The Freelancedom Book Club?

My idea of the perfect afternoon.

The other day, I participated in a book club gathering at my favorite local coffee shop. It was my first time, and I was nervous about inserting myself into a group of people I didn’t know, but they were discussing Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle — one of my favorite books — so I couldn’t resist.

I ended up having a lovely time, and it made me think about the way I cover books here on Freelancedom.

I mean, writing a book review is all well and good.  But wouldn’t it be way more fun to have a virtual book club discussion?

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5 Ways To Harness Your Introvert Power as an Entrepreneur

I don’t want to presume too much about you, dear readers, but I’ve noticed a pattern among the fellow freelancers/entrepreneurs I’ve had the pleasure of engaging with over the past few years:

Much like me, the majority of them are introverts.

It makes perfect sense.

Instead of feeling the pressure to perform at business meetings, freelancers can allow themselves the time to absorb communications from clients, mull things over, and then respond. Instead of feeling guilty for turning down lunch invites — worried that others will think them a weirdo or a snob — freelancers can spend lunch hours with their cats, scheduling social outings only when they feel up to them. And instead of working the typical 9 to 5, feeling obligated to stick to corporate work hours despite feeling burnt out, freelancers have the ability to work at their own pace, scheduling in book breaks, walks, or yoga as a means of recharging. It’s no wonder that introverts everywhere are flocking to freelancedom and entrepreneurship.

What’s sad is that many introverts still feel the need to apologize for their introversion. In Introvert Power, Laurie Helgoe writes that many introverts “… see extroversion as a bar that he or she can never quite reach.” I know the feeling. I’ve long cursed my tendencies toward introversion and social anxiety, and I admire those who can work a room like nobody’s business… and have a blast doing so. The thing is, being an introvert has its own benefits.

Introvert Power wasn’t written for freelancers or entrepreneurs, and it wasn’t written for writers. I recommend it anyway, because I found to be very affirming. That and I found that its lessons can easily be applied to the freelance life. How?

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Today’s Definition of Networking? Not So New

My adoring fans. Um. In my fantasy life.

If you’ve hung out on Twitter lately, or spent time on just about any business blog out there, you know that networking has been redefined as a whole lot more than just the ol’ happy hour hustle.

Instead of circulating a room with nothing but small talk and business cards, you’re now advised to connect with people wherever you go, building and maintaining authentic relationships with others and helping them out before seeking out help for yourself.

Similarly to what I’ve said on this blog, you should just be yourself, and trust in karma.

Refreshing. Right?

Of course it is. For those of us who have always seen sales and self-marketing as slightly sleazy/cheesy, this shift in the status quo is a huge relief.

The thing is, these tactics are nothing new.

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