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Writing Books/being a contributor to a book


QUESTION: I have been asked by the writer of a book - geared to a particular professional audience -  to contribute an article of which I have personal and profesisonal expeience of about 4000 words.  

To your knoweldge, is there a going rate or a particluar method of payment---or any payment at all to a contributor short of having a short bio and name mentioned?

Thank you,

ANSWER: Laurie...congratulations!  

However to the best of my knowledge there are no set rules on payment...most contributing authors get acknowledgment, several free books and a pat on the back...grin.

While some receive a minimum amount of money... an honorarium, which usually isn't very much.

However, and this is the important part, it's what you do with the book after it is published that is important.  For now you are a published author in a specific field...make the most of it.  Perhaps suggest, to the publisher, another book that YOU can author.  Or use this article to open doors to other publications... write other articles for the magazines in your field or perhaps even suggest some type of a monthly column.  

In other words, use the article to promote yourself and your writings. Hope this helps.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Funny you should mention what to do afterwards...
I already had a 250 page document on the very topic and therefore picking 4000 words was not hard to do.  While I have toyed with the idea of "doing something" with that orginal work,  I never did.  Which leads me to the next question - now that you have given me the idea (power of suggestion :))  to present the idea of another book (by me) to this publisher (I don't yet know who it is) what are the preliminary steps one should know and be aware of BEFORE showing the publisher your work?  What are things a total novie should be alert to that can wither help or defeat an attempt to be  published?????

Thank you so much for your insights and time!

Okay...step one...ask your friend who his/her publisher is... next, google publisher...see if they have a web site...if they do, they should list how to submit...  if no web site, check library/bookstore and get hold of their latest publication...  then..(and this is the important part) decide who their audience is... what segment of society do they sell to....

Now you are ready to approach the publisher with an e-mail/query letter in which you carefully, and in as few words as possible, tell the publisher your idea and how it will appeal to their audience...( they will make money from your book)...grin.

remember...on your query...shorter is always better...and always appeal to their "money-making" side.

let me know how it goes.


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Sue Viders


I can answer various questions about how to create characters for fiction writers.


Two published books, Heroes and Heroines, and Ten Steps to Creating a Memorable Character, plus years of teaching both on-site and on-line

Several national magazines...had monthly columns


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