How to Get a Book Published
Now that you have your book written you have to find a publisher. This is an arduous task because you do have to find just the right one. The best way to start your search is to find a listing of all the book publishers online. Then you have to visit each site to find the types of books each one publishes and the submission guidelines they provide for prospective authors. Some of the publishers you may have initially decided to contact may not even be accepting submissions and some may require that you have an agent.
When you do find publishers looking for books on your topic, you have to write a query letter. This letter basically asks the publishers if they will accept your book for publication. This letter does not have to be a proposal, but it should tell the publisher enough about the plot of the book for them to be able to decide if it is something they would be interested in having a look at. You can submit one query letter and wait for a response or you can submit multiple letters to several publishing houses.
If the publisher is interested in your book, you will receive a letter asking for the full manuscript to be sent. It may go through several reviewers and it may take months for the publisher to either reject or accept it. It is not uncommon for a writer to receive several rejection letters before finally finding a publisher that will accept the manuscript for publication.
If you only have an idea for a book, you can still contact a publisher with a proposal. In the proposal you not only have to include the first few chapters of the book, but you have to show that you have done your research. The publisher will want to know what kinds of readers would be interested in this book and what the possible chances are that it will sell well.
Once it is accepted, you will be assigned an editor to work with. This person will make suggestions for editing and revisions that you must make before resending the manuscript. Then you will receive a contract from the publisher, which spells out the payment methods and a description of the book itself. You may receive a royalty based on the sale of the book or an advance if the publisher likes your ideas and contracts with you to write a book on a specific topic.
After the book is published, you will receive a copy or two of the book for yourself. You may also have to take on book signing engagements to further increase the sales.
You can also publish a book yourself. This requires money out of your own pocket, as you have to pay for the printing and binding of the manuscript. It also means you have to market the book yourself in order to get back the money you spent on the publishing and make a profit for your writing.