The holiday season can be a great time to release a book, but it requires some planning! Check out our 5 tips below on how to publish a book in time for the holidays.
Before you settle on publishing a book during the holiday season, stop and think. Will your book directly relate to the holidays? Is this a significant time of year to you as an author? Do you think that your book could be sold just as successfully in the spring?
While many of our books like The Christmas Blanket and The House on Christmas Street are perfect holiday releases, others like Go Down the Mountain and Kit n’ Kat: The Nose Knows are better suited for the spring. Before you begin your manuscript, be sure to decide what time of year would be the best publication season for your book.
2. Develop a writing timeline.
Once you determine that your book is an ideal fit for the holiday season, you’ll want to make sure you can accomplish your goal in time! Craft a timeline that ensures your book is fully edited and written by the time you are ready to move forward with a publisher. Ideally, the text of your book should be completed and polished by springtime (flowers are blooming, and so can your writing ideas!).
3. Figure out illustration inspiration early.
Illustrations and artwork are one of the biggest variables when it comes to any timeline for book publication. Knowing what you want to see early on in the process is key. What color palettes interest you the most? What can you express in the art that you can’t express with words? What illustration styles do you admire—and, more crucially, which styles don’t you like? Being able to figure out these elements before you get to the production process will save you a lot of time, which is crucial when it comes to getting books out on a tight timeline.
4. Decide on your dedication, author biography, and back cover synopsis.
Other variables that can affect the book publication timeline are the dedication section, the author biography, and the back cover description. By preparing these pieces early, you are more likely to move through the timeline faster and ultimately achieve your holiday publication goal!
So to get started, who do you want to recognize in your dedication section? What back cover text will make your book stand out against the rest? What key facts about yourself do you want to highlight in your biography?
If you are having a difficult time deciding on these pieces, do your research! By looking at other books in your genre, you can decide what you like and do not like about a book’s setup.
5. Make your holiday book stand out from the crowd and decide on your target market.
The end-of-year holiday madness is a peak time for book releases—everyone wants their book to be on shopping lists! Because the market can get a little crowded, think about what makes your book stand apart. And, like deciding on your illustration ideas early, brainstorming these market differentiators at the beginning of the process can be helpful down the line. There are all kinds of fun “extras” that can be added to your book: coloring pages, digital content, punch-out ornaments or bookmarks, and other supplemental materials can give your book an advantage in the holiday market.
You will also want to decide who your target market is. Will your book be geared toward children, or adults? Do you want to focus your marketing efforts on local bookstores and media outlets, or do you want to expand your reach nationally? By deciding on your target market early, you will be more prepared for marketing efforts leading up to the book’s launch!
Now that the 2019 holiday season is here, if you’re looking at 2020, time to get started!