“The only person who can sell a book better than the author is the illustrator.” —Mark Wayne Adams
Authors aren’t the illustrations a key selling point of picture books? So why is getting the illustrator to make public appearances so difficult? Money may be the main factor. Illustrators not making royalties usually don’t promote. Consider offering royalties when hiring and negotiating contracts with illustrators.
Having not only a talented illustrator, but also an entertaining illustrator can boost sales too! An entertaining illustrator’s presence literally “draws a crowd” at events. Why should the illustrator make appearances? They are like magicians transforming words into pictures worth a thousand words.
Illustrators participate in events if royalties are earned. The percentage may be small, however for every book sold around a $1.00 could be earned. Helping authors and publishers sell 5,000 copies a year, is a $5,000 royalty check that year. The longer it takes to sell the books, the longer a substantial royalty check takes to arrive. This fact is true for inactive authors too.
Authors and Illustrators can set the selling pace by becoming sales people. Focusing individual and combined energy in selling is rewarding in several areas.
- Awards: The benefits are recognition in local and national media, retail sales, speaking engagements, award money, and new contracts.
- Book Festivals: The benefits are quick retail sales and new contracts.
- Book Signings: The benefits are distributor sales and new contracts.
Most importantly the time spent selling together and individually will Draw a Crowd of readers faster with teamwork. Double one another’s following through association. Working together may also inspire additional books in the series. Making a win win for everyone involved!