Saturday, August 03, 2013

The Keys to Publishing Success -- Innovation

Hi, folks, this month I'm going to talk about the keys of publishing success. I hope this series of practical advice helps you. First, you have to understand something important. Writing and publishing are not the same thing. You can be a very successful writer without being published. Think John Kennedy Toole or Emily Dickinson -- tragic but informative. This series is about finding publishing success, writing success is whole other topic.

One key that opens publishing doors -- innovation. It will propel your work to readers. There is no question. Innovation will open the doors that have previously been closed to you. To leverage innovation, you must learn to recognize opportunity and seize it. Writing is professional skill and you need 10,000 hours of informative practice to become a master. Once you can write, it is time to connect your stories with readers. This is the moment to innovate. Don't get me wrong, traditional still works. If you are connected to the traditional publishing world -- related to folks in publishing, have an MFA, lots of publishing contacts for whatever reason, or are working in publishing, use that. If not, the pathway to innovation will open up  new worlds of opportunity.

What is innovation? It is about going in a new direction that no one has thought of yet. Here are three suggested pathways: writing innovation, market delivery innovation, and  connection innovation. This is a broad topic but hopefully these quick snapshots will get your started.

Writing Innovation:  You can write. You are knowledgeable. Turn a genre on its ear. Grab hold of tired vampires and see them in a light as never before.  Dig into an old story like Frankenstein and unearth a new modern day Prometheus. Merge together two different genres in a way that has never been done before. Jack Kerouac, Phillip K. Dick, J.K Rowling ... these are people who dazzle to me. Be a game changer.This kind of innovation takes writing chops and throwing out the rule books. Are you up for this?

Market Delivery Innovation: The way people are reading books has irrevocably changed. Educate yourself about these changes. Jump on wave. Find the sharpest newest forms of self-publication. Check out the Innovations in Reading Prize winners from the National Book Foundation. Investigate Amazon, Smashwords, self-publishing and the future of self publishing. Many traditional publishers have ebook imprints now that don't require agents for submission. This is a market delivery revolution. Educate yourself and innovate to publish.

Connection Innovation:  This is about building a connection with readers in an innovative way that leads to publication. Your connection will be all about what is of core importance to you. I like Michael Hyatt as guru on the subject of platform. He can help you reach out to readers.  I also think you should check new ways readers are connecting online -- weBook, DeviantArt, ABCtales, Authonomy, Wattpad... there are a ton of different ways out there and the freshest most innovative ones aren't on this list. They are being invented right now. Take connection risks and innovate.

I hope that something here gets your work to readers. I hope that doors swing open for you! Good luck. I will be back next week with more on

This month I'm posting photos instead of doodle: A way up. 



Here is a quote for your pocket.

Doing the same thing over and over, yet expecting different results, is the definition of crazy.— Unknown

16 comments:

Mirka Breen said...

I always think of writers who stubbornly keep submitting when I hear this quotation... Self included. Proud to be crazy that way.
About innovation, I think my first few manuscripts(unpublished, and by most standards also publishable) were the more innovative ones. I hadn't yet incorporated the "how to" so ubiquitous on the internet and in writing courses.
Let us not forget the many innovative artists we never got to remember in the first place, because no one understood what they had to offer.

MollyMom103 said...

Hi, Mirka, I think about that quote in a different light. I try to be more with every rejection. Each no has served as fuel to take more risks. But I do think that some serious perserverance is need to prevail. I honestly believe great art will make an impact. It might not make a monetary difference in the artist's life but it does make a difference. I will always remain hopeful of this.

Lexa Cain said...

Innovation is certainly important. Thanks for giving all the tips and the links to help writers find innovative ideas and succeed. :-)

Vijaya said...

Good post ... thinking outside the box. Also, one has to consider what the goals are. So many of my students are really writing for their own personal pleasure, or just for family. I consider them successful when they are able to meet their goals.

The internetty things make my head spin. Some day I'm going to need a young whippersnapper like my son to help me navigate that world.

Christine Rains said...

Great post! I completely agree that you need to be innovative in every area as a writer. It can be difficult to find the right way to get to your audience, though, but we've just got to keep trying.

MollyMom103 said...

Hi Lexa, thanks for dropping by. Hope you found something helpful.

MollyMom103 said...

Hi Vijaya, I totally agree that many have different goals and that really will help them define their ow success. Good point.

MollyMom103 said...

Hi Christine, yes, finding an audience is a journey, a good one.

Andrew Leon said...

You know, I just don't think we need to see vampires in any light, especially if it makes them sparkle.

I have a post coming up next week that will be talking about this kind of thing, though.

Jennifer Lane said...

Great post, Molly! I agree with Andrew above that vampires are overdone, but maybe that's your point--you can make anything fresh and exciting if you innovate.

I love writing stories I would read but judging by my sales, my stories aren't really connecting to readers. I'll keep thinking about ways to do that better.

MollyMom103 said...

Hi, Andrew, I'm with you on the sparkly vampires, but I've been surprised before.

MollyMom103 said...

Jennifer, exactly. Maybe someone can rock vampires in a whole new way.

Connecting with readers is alchemy, kismet and magic all rolled up into one bundle.

Thanks for dropping by!

You too, Andrew!

Elizabeth Seckman said...

The only site I had ever heard of is Wattpad. Guess my innovation could use some work!

Elizabeth Seckman said...

The only site I had ever heard of is Wattpad. Guess my innovation could use some work!

MollyMom103 said...

It's just one form of innovation. I absolutely feel that you should follow what is natural fit for you.

MollyMom103 said...

Thanks for dropping by, Elizabeth!