Last summer, when I first starting working on a platform for my unpublished book, my son asked me why I just don't print out the book on our home printer and take it to Barnes and Noble and put it on their shelf.
I explained the process to him. The story starts with an idea in the author's heart. The author puts it on paper, making sure the story and the characters are as interesting as they can be. Then the author fixes it as best she can. She then has writer friends look at it to make suggestions for improvement. She makes changes, she goes to conferences, writes letters to agents and publishing editors. An editor with a publishing house buys her story, they print up a few thousand books and gets them to the bookstores, where people shop and buy the book.
He looked up at me thoughtfully. "How much will the author get, mommy? How much per book?"
I thought about it for a moment. Simple answer is best for his seven-year-old mind. "Well, she gets about a dollar per book for every one that sells. Something like that, maybe a little more, maybe a little less."
His brows knit together. "That's not very much!"
I smiled. "It can be. It just depends on how many books sell. If the author made a dollar a book and a million books sold, the author would earn a million dollars." There, that was simple, he could understand it explained that way. I could teach business classes to seven-year-olds. Pat myself on the back.
His lips pursed, he shook his head. "Huh-uh, mom. You're doing it all wrong!"
"Yeah, all you need to do is forget about all that other stuff. Just print one book and sell it for a hundred million thousand dollars. Just sell one, mom. That's all you need to do." 'Nuff said. He turned away and took a few steps. "You only need ONE good book."
Hmm...I wonder what his submission guidelines are? Maybe I could snag me a Lil' Tiger agent yet!