The Differences Between Nonfiction and Fiction in Building Readerships

Not all books are written for the same purpose. Even something as basic as a book’s genre can radically change an author’s career and approach to writing, marketing, and publishing. Sam Staley (SR Staley), award-winning author, film critic, and educator discusses key differences in building readerships for fiction and nonfiction. The purposes of each type of book are very different in terms of intention and career effects.  “In nonfiction, the book validates you as an expert,” says Staley. A nonfiction book can be a fantastic boost for people who want a teaching or speaking career. That’s not necessarily the case for fiction. Staley explains the dynamics of a fiction audience compared to those of a nonfiction book. How do authors identify and connect with readers before they even pick up a book? The market has changed so much in the last twenty years, but some core elements have remained the same. Persistence is a vital quality for authors as they progress in their careers. It is incredibly rare that a person’s first book is their “breakout book.” Listen to the clip below to learn more from Staley as he explains the nature of selling both fiction and nonfiction books.

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  • Hi, I found this helpful. I am writing a non-fiction book but its touching on the edge between fiction and non-fiction. The title of the book is The Holodeck a specification and I hope to get the publishing started next year. I have 1/4 of the book written and I have also designed software to simulate the concept photonic core to be used in aiding the writing of the book. This software is in the debugging phase of design and I am at the moment debugging module,chip and motherboard functionality as-well as the document management system. I have the component stability tests done. I am using several different medias to get the word out about my book and this book has been a long term project.