Saturday, March 19, 2011

Book Review: A Path to Publishing by Ed Cyzewski

Title: A Path to Publishing: What I Learned by Publishing a Nonfiction Book
Author: Ed Cyzewski
Publisher: CreateSpace, paperback, 186 pages, April 2010
ISBN-10: 1451580584
ISBN-13: 978-1451580587

If you’ve been going from author blogs to agent blogs, from publisher sites to editor articles, from archives to comments trying to figure out what you need to do to get a non-fiction book published, your quest is over. Ed Cyzewski has put it all together in one useful volume. In A Path to Publishing he guides readers from choosing a book idea to marketing the finished product. Along the way he discusses today’s hot issues like building a network, crafting the proposal, working with editors, publishing options, and more.

The book includes lots of instruction on how to use the internet and social media (blogs, Facebook, Twitter etc.) to build a platform and market a book. It also explains traditional marketing methods (press releases, radio interviews, bookstore signings etc.).

Cyzewski’s suggestions are fortified with case studies including his experience with writing, publishing, and marketing his book Coffeehouse Theology (NavPress, 2008). Cyzewski ends each chapter with “Action Steps” that suggest things the reader can do to begin to implement what was just read.

The book is practical, well-organized, and easy to read. It comes highly recommended with endorsements from a variety of editors, agents and publishers.

However, it had one disappointment for me. God is nowhere to be found in the process. In fact, I was surprised that someone with expertise in theology would advise the reader to “Pray for luck….You can’t underestimate the importance of timing and luck in the writing business” (pp. 24-25).

So don’t look to this book for a spiritual perspective on your book-publishing endeavour. But do read it for timely, realistic guidance on how to take the non-fiction book in your imagination or  on your hard drive from dream to reality.

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© 2011 by Violet Nesdoly 

(This review was first published in the February 2011 issue of FellowScript. The book was provided as a gift by the author for the purpose of writing a review.)

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