We could really go down the rabbit hole here.
Which is why I’ve only chosen a few things to get you some help on your journey. My big advice is to not spend too much time obsessing over publishing if you’re still trying to get a book out and get better at your craft. That being said, the biggest lesson I’ve learned in this business is that you have to be your own advocate. Knowledge is power. And remember: at the end of the day, writing comes first. Before we get into it, I offer you a scrap of Whitman that one of my mentors, A.S. King, gave to me when I was really overwhelmed by the business. I carry it with me wherever I go, reciting the lines to myself when I need a good dose of perspective. It reminds me why I write, and I now pass it on to you.
When I Heard The Learn’d Astronomer
When I heard the learn’d astronomer
When the proofs, the figures, were ranged in columns before me,
When I was shown the charts and diagrams, to add, divide, and measure them,
When I, sitting, heard the astronomer, where he lectured with much applause in the lecture room,
How soon unaccountable I became tired and sick,
Till rising and gliding out, I wandered off my myself,
In the mystical moist night-air, and from time to time,
Look’d up in perfect silence at the stars
Exclusive inspiration portal publishing resources
Book Bub: I have been pretty impressed with a lot of the content being sent to Book Bub Partners. If you sign up for their newsletter, you get a slew of grassroots marketing resources. It’s really helpful to see. Their blog is great - such as this one about “11 Creative Ways Authors Announced Their Book Launch”
The Over App: So great for creating graphics and announcements for either your site or social media or blog. So many publishers don’t help with this, so you can have great tools at your disposal for free. SUPER easy and user friendly.
Copyblogger: If you struggle with calls to action, this is a great resource for how to go about doing inbound marketing with your readers.
Publisher’s Weekly Kidlit Roundup Newsletter: I get this once a week or so, and really appreciate seeing thr roundup of things happening in the industry. Beware, though! If seeing deals stresses you out, just don’t look at that part. :)
these resources are on my public writing resources page:
Join SCBWI, the Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators: It made me feel super legit to join (you don’t have to be published to do so), and they have loads of support and resources, and a great community. This is how I found my first writer’s group, went to my first writing workshop, and learned the ins and outs of publishing in the kidlit world.
Get The Hot Sheet: Jane Friedman is a great source of publishing know-how, and her Hot Sheet is well worth the modest annual fee. This is how I keep abreast of major shifts in publishing, what’s new in the pub world in terms of tools for writers, and results of studies done for marketing etc. A HUGE help, and a one-stop-shop. Her website and newsletter are great, too.
Join the Author’s Guild: This is how I learn more about my rights as an author and get the skinny on grants and residencies available to me. It gives me a sense of solidarity and like I’m getting my power back from the sharks out there. They advocate for us and I love being educated through their amazing newsletter. They have so many benefits for authors and we NEED them, so please consider getting a membership. You won’t regret it! Bonus: you get a discount on the Hot Sheet when you join the Guild!
Susan Dennard’s newsletter: SHE IS THE BEST. I love her deep insight into publishing. She is so helpful with craft tips. She really puts a ton of effort into this newsletter and I always benefit. Plus, you get a download of how to write a query when you sign up, if you’re in need of that.
Query Shark: This is a great resource for figuring out how to make your query sing.
Cynsations: Author Cynthia Leitich Smith has LOADS of interviews with authors and industry insights