Untraditional Publishing Philosophy

Traditional publishing and self-publishing appear to be the only two options for authors. But what if there was another way? Back in 1992, I met a publishing lawyer named Martin Levin. He gave me a piece of advice that set me on a different path than most authors. “Learn how to be your own literary agent.” 

What does that mean? I needed to understand everything about the publishing industry. I needed to make courageous decisions based on how publishing would evolve over the next ten to twenty years. I needed to map out marketing strategies for my books, long before the books would be published. I needed to understand details of publishing contracts. I needed to build a contact list, while building relationships with my target audience. 

In short, I became responsible for my career as an author, not others. By doing this, I opened doors of opportunities, which “traditional” routes would not have provided me. While authors were sending in query letters to traditional publishers and other authors were paying for publishing, I began a more “Untraditional” path. 

In 2009, I called that process, “Untraditional Publishing.” 

Here is the definition. Untraditional Publishing: Alternative literary principles for authors based on confidence, knowledge, self-discovery, experience, and relationship marketing, placing the author in a position to succeed while generating the opportunity to sell books. 

That can be a tough definition to swallow, so here is a breakdown of Untraditional Publishing

Step One: Author Confidence 

~ Envision your dreams each day. Be open to changes and stay motivated. 

~ Finding ways to benefit your readers will give you the confidence to know exactly what you need to do. 

~ By networking with authors, you will have a support group. Keep everything positive and UP-beat. 

~ Humbling times will come. If your confidence is unshakeable, you will keep moving forward. 

~ You must have the confidence to create new opportunities. Never believe that you are out of options. 

~ It is one thing to tell others you are an author. It is entirely different to have the courage to be an author. Nothing should stand in your way of success and your dreams. 

Step Two: Author Knowledge 

You must excel in many areas as an author. Knowing how to excel will bring you success. Remember that most authors will not put in the time to improve every aspect of being an author. But you are Untraditional

Improve, then improve some more: 

~ Reading (Most important.) 

~ Storytelling (Includes your voice and style.) 

~ Writing Mechanics 

~ Research Target Audience 

~ Research Publishing Industry 

~ Research New Ideas and Concepts 

~ Verbal Communication 

~ Written Communication (Content) 

~ Relationship Target Marketing: Your Potential Readers 

~ Relationship Contact Marketing: Those in the Publishing Industry 

~ Relationship Partner Marketing: Ancillary Business Partners 

~ Understanding All Key Factors in Sales 

Step Three: Self-Discovery 

Every author takes a different path to success. Your path is distinctive. By applying confidence and knowledge, you will open a new world of author potential. 

~ You have hidden talents and ideas. Keep searching and create opportunities. 

~ Use your talents and resources in creative ways. 

~ Keep asking questions like, “Why is this important?” and “How can I be unique?” These questions apply to every aspect of being an author. 

~ And remember that unique authors become millionaires. 

Step Four: Experience 

~ Experience gives you credibility in the genre that you are writing. You are an expert that will benefit your readers. 

~ Each time you work on any aspect of being an author, you will gain experience. The more experience you have, the easier it will be. 

~ Experience will open the doors of opportunity. 

Step Five: Relationship Marketing 

~ Use all of your content to benefit others. (This includes your website, blogs, eNewsletters, and posts in social media.) 

~ Write your books, based on the ideas of how to benefit your readers. 

~ Benefit others in the publishing industry, including all business contacts. This will produce opportunities. 

~ Join groups and contribute to their conversations. People will remember you. 

~ All content should be UP-beat and helpful. 

~ Everything you do from this point on should benefit your current readers and your future readers, along with all publishing contacts and business contacts. 

Step Six: Selling Books 

~ Books come in different packages. Printed hardback, printed soft-back, several types of digital eBooks, traditionally published books, self-published books, books created by marketing agencies, and so on. How that book is packaged will come from your generated ideas and opportunities. Also, your books should be packaged in several formats. Just remember that publishing is a way to create and distribute your book. Nothing more. 

~ An author that is confident will sell books. 

~ An author that is knowledgeable will sell books. 

~ An author that uses self-discovery to be unique will sell books. 

~ An author that is experienced will sell books. 

~ An author that uses relationship marketing in all its forms will sell books. 

~ You will sell books. 

After you go through the process of Untraditional Publishing at least once, then the Six Principles will become interchangeable as you continue to excel. 

Once again, here is the definition of Untraditional Publishing

Alternative literary principles for authors based on confidence, knowledge, self-discovery, experience, and relationship marketing, placing the author in a position to succeed while generating the opportunity to sell books.” 

Your time has come to Rise UP! 

Ron Knight 

Untraditional Publishing: The Third Option http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/92130 

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Ron Knight

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