It may come as a surprise, but books don’t magically appear in coffee shops, charming oceanside stores, or locally-owned bookshops. It takes research, phone calls, and actual human interaction to place books in smaller or non-traditional bookstores.
Out of Amazon’s ebook paid sales, 45 percent were romance. And out of all romance sales, an estimated 89 percent are digital copies. So why do romance readers buy so many ebooks?
Building an audience is one of the most important facets of marketing, but if book marketers cannot effectively establish a genre then they cannot establish an audience.
What happens when the book you’ve written doesn’t neatly fit into one specific genre? For instance, what if instead of a book that falls unquestionably into the mystery thriller category, you’ve written one that beautifully straddles the line between personal memoir and war memoir? While this question can certainly influence any number of factors in the book publishing process, it comes into a particularly important light when a publisher begins to develop the marketing plan for a new book.
When most readers think of book design, they focus on the exterior aspects: the front and back covers, the jacket, the spine. Interior design is often overlooked and underestimated, and yet the work that goes into designing the words on the page is just as intensive and can be just as creative as the work that goes into designing covers. And just like cover design, different genres have different challenges and style trends for interior layout. The cardinal rule of interior layout is that the design must be invisible: the choices shouldn’t be so obvious that they distract the reader from the content of the book.
At the core of any successful publishing press lies something very important: a mission statement. This declaration of intent and focus is how a press presents their goals and values to the public. Not only does this serve as a guideline for the future pursuits and acquisitions of titles within the press but it provides authors with a guideline for potential manuscript submissions. General audiences tend not to follow specific presses and often aren’t aware of the mission statements of the presses from which their favorite books are published. Even so, there are trends within each press that are more obvious to their employees.
Ooligan Press currently states that it “aspires to discover works that reflect the values and attitudes that inspire so many to call the Northwest their home.” While many of our current and backlist titles include Pacific Northwest locations and themes, Ooligan has not exclusively published these types of titles in the past. One of the neat things about Ooligan is looking at the different books we have published over the years and how certain trends have evolved. Ask any current Ooligan student what they think our publishing trend is today, and they would probably say “water” due to the large number of books published about rivers, oceans, etc. However, not every student knows that we have published books about historical figures and other countries.