4-Week: The Big Business of Book Publishing

$205.00 Members
$230.00 Non-members

Once you've completed your manuscript, how do you approach the complex and intimidating world of book publishing? Even if you're in the first stages of writing your book, it is not too early to begin planning your publication strategy. A realistic view of the marketplace will help you stand out in a crowded field. This workshop is designed to give students an overview of how the book business works, tips on how to avoid industry no-no’s and pitfalls, feedback on queries and pitches, as well as the tools to answer these questions: 


  • Where does your work fit in the marketplace?
  • How do you compile a list of appropriate literary agents for your work?
  • What is the role of a literary agent? Do you even need one? 
  • How do you pitch your book?
  • What are the components of a successful query letter? 
  • Should you meet with one of the agents coming to Lit Fest?
  • What is the role of the editor?
  • What are the negotiable parts of a book contract?


Week #1: Introduction to Book Publishing — Students will get an insider’s view of book publishing, focusing on the agent’s perspective. We'll discuss the tools you need to submit to an agent or a smaller publisher, how to find agents, and how to write a query letter.


Week #2: Query Letter Clinic — Students will bring in drafts of query letters. We'll read them in class and critique each other’s letters. 


Week #3: The Verbal Pitch — Students will practice the verbal pitch for their book with each other. Using fast and fun exercises, you will get a chance to try different pitches for your book, but no one is asked to do it in front of the whole class. 


Week #4: The Business of Book Publishing — The last week will focus on publishers. We'll discuss how a book is sold by an agent to an editor, what a book contract looks like, and how authors get paid. 


There will be plenty of time for questions from the instructor, Shana Kelly, an expert in the industry and literary agent for over 10 years, first with the William Morris Agency and now with Einstein Literary Management.

Instructor: Shana Kelly Learn More


Feb 06, 2018 4:00pm - 6:00pmFeb 13, 2018 4:00pm - 6:00pmFeb 20, 2018 4:00pm - 6:00pmFeb 27, 2018 4:00pm - 6:00pm