Thursday, January 27, 2011

A Great Place For Writers to Submit Their Work

All you folks out there who have been looking for a place to submit your work, you really need to check out this site.

I considered waiting a couple of months to post this, but I felt it just couldn't wait.

Writing in a Crowded Market

Sometimes I hate While you can’t find every book on the planet there, they come close enough. I sometimes peruse their stacks to see what other authors are writing in my topic area. I’ll see a book and think, “I was going to write about that.” I’ll look at the one next to it, “well there’s another one.” You don’t have to look at very long to realize that all the good topics are already taken—and most of the not so good topics. Let’s face it, with over 1 million new books published every year, every topic has to be covered by someone.

But what does that mean to those of us who have chosen to join this fray? Other writers aren’t going to politely defer to us so that we can write our book. Nor can we defer to them. What that means is that we are going to find ourselves writing books that have significant overlap with what other authors say about the same subject.

It isn’t what you say, but how you say it. You’ve heard that all your life, but it is no more evident than when we are talking about books. One of my interests is technology books. There are thousands of books written about web technology. Search for “Facebook” in books on and it will come back with 2,395 results alone. It is only 1,676 if we limit it to printed books, but it is still a large number. Not all of those are actually about Facebook, but that hardly matters. If you have something to say about Facebook, you have plenty of company. The thing that make one book stand out from the other is not that they have something to say about Facebook but how they address the subject of Facebook. One talks about the inside story of Facebook. Another talks about Facebook marketing. Another is a guide to Facebook. Another talks about building Facebook applications. At a high level, they are all about Facebook, but they each have a different audience.

There are still 381 books on the topic of Facebook applications. If you have something to say in this arena, you have a better chance of success, but it is far from guaranteed. At this level of refinement, I think much of your success will depend on how well you say what you have to say. Just because someone else has written about a topic doesn’t mean that they have conveyed that information as well as they could. It also doesn’t mean that they have covered it completely. There is always an opportunity for us to explain things so that people retain the information better than they do with another author or to explore things that other authors haven’t considered.

Of course, that means that we have to be cognizant of what other authors are saying. We can’t blindly write about a subject because we have learned something. For all you know, you could be the last person who needs to learn the information. Everyone else may already know it. Why waste time telling people things they already know? But if we look at what other authors are writing, we may find that no one else is writing about what we have learned. That gives us the opportunity to share that information.