Dreaming To Be A Published Author? – How To Avoid The Catch 22 Conundrum

My dream had always been to be an author published by a conventional publishing house. My dream was accomplished by being strategic in expanding my writing credentials and building my biography in a way that would capture and hold the attention of publishers by standing out in the sea of weekly, monthly, and yearly submissions.

How can this be done?

It was done by building my author reputation in multi-author books that included the writings of already published and in some cases celebrity authors. If being a published author is also your dream, my one big piece of advice to you is, “Don’t go it alone.” Get into a book that celebrates successful writers because the old saying ‘Birds of a Feather Flock Together’ is true. Insert yourself into success.

Publisher Patricia Cagganello of Sacred Stories Publishing and BizCatalyst 360° Editor-in-Chief Dennis Pitocco were guests on the Kat Kanavos Video Podcast Show. The topic of conversation was the many changes taking place in the publishing industry and how budding authors can best use those changes to their advantage.

The Kat Kanavos Show Podcast Interview is posted at the bottom of this article for your viewing pleasure. And, the syndicated audio version on iHeart Women’s Radio Today is also posted for your listening pleasure.

With today’s publishing statistics becoming more dismal by the year, pursuing  a conventionally published contract is easier said than done, BUT, it is not impossible if you have a tried-and-true plan. My dream has come true and now it is my joy to help you get published if you share the same dream.

Let’s begin with some hard facts concerning publishing and then move into a plan. 

Despite popular thinking, publishing companies are not about publishing books. Publishing companies are into making money. Publishing is a multi-million (and in some cases BILLION) dollar industry. Publishing is a means to an end-MONEY. When you want to be conventionally published you are basically stating that you want to play ball with the Big-Boys, and the Big Boys play Hardball to win.

Have you heard of or perhaps experienced the Catch 22 Conundrum of Conventional Publishing?

Most conventional publishers do not accept unsolicited manuscripts. That means they do not accept manuscripts or book proposals from authors. They only accept them from literary agents. If you have ever tried to get an agent you may already know that many Literary Agencies do not accept unpublished authors. They may accept 2% of all new querying authors per year. New authors have not yet proved themselves and are a success risk. Agents and publishers do not like to take risks. They think much like Bankers.

To a Banker, no deal is a good deal because they did not lose money.

And, in order to get a literary agent you must research them according to the subject matter because like doctors, they are very specialized. When you find an agent who represents books similar to yours you must draft an eye-catching, attention-grabbing query letter, an awesome Book Proposal,  and follow the directions of the agent’s query requirements to the letter, or your hard work will be deleted, and there are no second chances to fix mistakes.

Literary Agencies and agents are big-hearted people, but they are not focused on getting you published out of the goodness of their heart. They are business professionals focused on finding authors who will make their agency money to offset the cost of publishing a book. The best authors for their agency are the ones who have already proved themselves by being published.

This is the Publishing World’s Catch 22 Conundrum. Now, onto Shocking Statistics.

Approximately 1 % of solicited manuscripts are conventionally published each year. Further research states a book has less than a 1% chance of being stocked in an average bookstore. And, according to Forbes 99% of titles printed will never sell enough copies to recover all the costs associated with creating and publishing them. This makes publishers reluctant to publish new authors, especially if they do not have a proven track record that consists of reaching their platform and selling product, substantial social media numbers or professional platform to reach and promote their books. Simple economies of scale show us that marketing, sales, and fulfillment costs alone require a sizable social media “list” of followers to be economical.

Publishers have managed to stay afloat in this worsening marketplace only by shifting more and more marketing responsibility to authors, to cut costs and prop up sales. In recognition of this reality, most book proposals from experienced authors now have an extensive (usually many pages) section on the authors’ marketing platform and what the authors will do to publicize, market, and promote the books.

Publishing success is 5% writing a good book and 95% marketing.

So what is a writer to do if they find their work constantly rejected? When Opportunity knocks-ANSWER! Find a multi-author book opportunity offered by an award-winning qualified publisher that includes both published and new authors and enjoy the many advantages of shared:

  1. Publishing/printing/editing expenses
  2. Social media platforms
  3. Professional promotions
  4. Awards and submission expenses
  5. Fulfillment Costs
  6. Bragging Rights- (You can honestly say, “Yes, I’m published.”)

Before being published and distributed by Inner Traditions/Simon & Schuster I had stories published in five different multi-author books which helped me expand my social media numbers and reach, improve my promotional skills, build my biography, allowed me to connect with already published authors, and gave me bragging rights in the Publishing Section of the Book Proposal.

As a new author, this gave me an advantage over other competing authors.

For a limited time only, these advantages and opportunities are now available to writers through the multi-author book being compiled on Stories of Change and offered through the combined efforts of Sacred Stories Publishing,  BIZCATALYST 360° and Kat Kanavos Promotions. It may be a very long time before Opportunity like this knocks again. Can you afford to wait?

Please enjoy the show ⤵︎


Kat O'Keefe-Kanavos
Kat O'Keefe-Kanavos
Kathleen (Kat) O’Keefe-Kanavos is the award-winning author of Surviving Cancerland, and co-author of Dreams That Can Save Your Life. She’s a three-time cancer survivor, and co-publisher/editor of WEBE Books Publishing. Her dreams diagnosed her illness as seen on Dr. Oz, Doctors, NBC News, American Express Open, in Newspapers and magazines. She’s a Contributor to Chicken Soup for the Soul, TV/Radio Host/Producer- Dreaming Healing on DV7Radio/TV Network, Wicked Housewives On Cape Cod™, Kat Kanavos Show, Internationally Syndicated Columnist in BIZCATALYST 360°, Dream Columnist in Positive Tribe Magazine, and Desert Health Magazine, Keynote Speaker, Performance Coach who taught Special Ed & Psychology @USF, and Lecturer who promotes patient advocacy and Spiritual guidance. She is co-author to the inspiring books; Chaos to Clarity: Sacred Stories of Transformational Change and Crappy to Happy: Sacred Stories of Transformational Joy

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  1. Wow! Kat this is truly helpful! You’re right being a new author is hard, I can’t count how many times I’ve been rejected but I am determined to become a conventionally published author. In the meantime, I will continue to save up to have my books published as an indie-author. Thank you so much for sharing!