Friday, February 3, 2012

Dating (in Publishing, that is)

Clients often wonder why we want to wait to release their book. It's sitting there all ready to go, and yet we insist on waiting.  "UGH!" they say -- "But people are already in line outside the bookstores waiting for it to go on sale!" 
Self publishers and independent authors are often caught in the trap of their own false impressions of how a book is published. Take the time to publicize your book properly.  You'll need a minimum of four months to get a review from a professional reviewer, or a possible feature in a magazine or any other type of publicity. 

There are several dates you need to know
  • Advance Review Deadline:  4 months ahead of your Publication Date
  • Street Date:  When you have actual books in hand and you can sell them privately
  • Pub Date/Publication Date/Release Date: The date when the industry can start selling you book
Another important date
Copyright Date:  The date when you officially send your book to the Library of Congress.  Make sure you are not sending it ahead of having your book published.  Libraries and other buyers look at that date to determine the book's age.  So if you finished writing your book in December of 2011, finished your editing and layout in June, and set your publication date for November 2012 -- you would set your copyright year as 2013 and NOT 2011.  Why?  Buyers look at the book's copyright year when deciding one title over another.  In January of 2013 with a copyright year of 2011, your book would appear two years old if you set your copyright as the date you finished writing.

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