Here are the questions and answers authors most frequently ask us. Of course, if your questions aren’t answered here, We’re happy to answer them. Simply contact us or schedule a consultation.
We help people write, publish and market their books.
Bobbin is an established and experienced group of various publishing professionals who teamed up to bring you accessible and competitive author services.
Collectively, we’ve been in publishing for decades, long before Bobbin was officially founded in 2018. We have worked on over 1000+ books, including some major bestselling books (which you can see here).
Bobbin is an assisted self-publishing company.
Assisted self-publishing is for authors who want to get a book published with a minimum of fuss, and don’t want to spend days, weeks or months learning how to do everything on their own. You get guidance and support throughout the entire publishing process.
It’s the business model of self-publishing, with the support of traditional publishing.
Think of Bobbin as your personal trainer for your journey as an author.
We offer a complete suite of services; publishing, editing, book coaching, ghostwriting, marketing, and many of the same benefits that a traditional publisher might offer.
But assisted self-publishing is not at all like signing with a publisher or agent.
With assisted self-publishing, an author retains all their book rights, book royalties and creative control.
It is a one-time fee-based service, where the author pays a modest amount to have a book published, with no ongoing contractual arrangement.
Unlike a contract with a publisher, which will almost certainly demand book rights and a share of royalties for years, assisted self-publishing is a no strings attached service.
With a traditional publisher contract, an author may hope for extra help with book marketing. But in recent years, publishers are more likely to leave this to the author, as marketing budgets have shrunk.
We have programs to help you at any stage – whether you’re just starting out, stuck in the middle, or ready to pursue publication.
Where are you at in your writing journey?
Q. I have a great idea for a book but I want to get professional feedback on the idea to check its commercial viability before I invest further in writing/editing.
A. Your next step is to consider getting a Bobbin Premise Assessment here.
Q. I’ve written the first few chapters of my book and I want to get some initial feedback before I get too far into the book.
A. Your next step is to consider connecting with a Bobbin Early Reader here.
Q. I’ve completed the first draft of my manuscript and I want to get some basic reader feedback to help me polish it before I invest in editing.
A. Your next step is to consider connecting with a Bobbin Early Reader here.
Q. I’ve polished my manuscript after getting feedback from an Early Reader and now I want to get professional feedback—a full read and review of my manuscript from a highly trained book coach to address the structure of my book: Voice/Style, Plot, Pacing, Conflict, Characterization, Marketability, etc.
A. Your next step is to consider getting a Bobbin Manuscript Evaluation here.
Q. I’ve received a Manuscript Evaluation from a book coach and now I’m ready for a serious comprehensive line-edit from an award-winning, NYT’s bestselling editor to address the creative content, writing style, and language use at the sentence and paragraph level.
A. Your next step is to consider getting a Bobbin Manuscript Edit here.
Q. I want extra guidance, accountability and support from a book coach to help me achieve my publishing goal.
A. Your next step is to consider connecting with one of our highly trained book coaches here.
Q. My manuscript has gotten feedback from Early Readers, plus a Manuscript Evaluation and a Manuscript Edit. And now I’m ready to self-publish.
A. Your next step is to consider connecting with Bobbin Publishing here.
Q. My manuscript has gotten feedback from Early Readers, plus a Manuscript Evaluation and a Manuscript Edit. And now I’m ready to query agents so that I can traditionally publish.
A. Best wishes on your publishing journey! Bobbin will continue to support you. Keep us posted on your progress at our private publishing community Bobbin Connected here.
Q. I don’t like writing and/or I don’t have the time to write a book myself.
A. If your book idea is nonfiction, your next step is to consider connecting with Bobbin Professional here.
Q. I’m an entrepreneur, consultant, executive or other professional and I want a New York Times bestselling ghostwriter to write my book using my ideas and written in my voice.
A. Your next step is to consider connecting with Bobbin Luminary here.
To further help you choose the best fit for your needs, we’ve provided a side by side comparison.
We offer a 30-day, 100% money-back guarantee. If you’re not blown away by our programs and the structure, we’ll gladly refund your payment. This is unlikely (check out our testimonials!), but rest assured that you’ll get your money back if you’re not totally satisfied.
That said, we are not guaranteeing any specific outcome directly or indirectly attributed to this process. Great books can go unnoticed, and terrible books go on to be bestsellers all the time…Life is strange that way.
Our goal at Bobbin is to give your story the strongest legs possible to run a competitive race in the commercial marketplace.
We just want to help by giving great content, direction, and strategies.
No, we cannot just work with anyone. We typically reject about 20-30% of authors who want to work with us.
We invest a lot of time and resources in your success even before you start. We do everything we can to ensure that our program is right for you, including a free 30-minute consultation to talk through the program logistics, robust FAQs that address key aspects of the program, and a team approach to evaluating your application materials so we can do everything in our power to best help you meet your goals.
Before you sign up with Bobbin, we invite you to fill out a detailed Q&A about your project and your goals.
Answering a few questions about your book idea and writing life before we speak to you provides context about your specific needs and the goals you are trying to accomplish so that we may better help you achieve them.
We run the answers to the Q&A through 3 criteria:
1. Does the author just write for fun or their own enjoyment (a hobbyist) and does not write for an audience of readers?
Writing as a hobby is great and we encourage it. But our programs are designed specifically for authors who are dedicated to real professional development and are serious about writing and publishing a commercially viable book.
2. Is the author open to criticism or being told that something is in need of further work?
Truth is, some writers opt-in to get their book affirmed. They aren’t open to criticism or being told that something is in need of further work, or they don’t agree to the specificity of that need within Bobbin’s editorial feedback.
The scope of work here is Bobbin editors and coaches reading your work carefully, applying a set of specific criteria to multiple facets of the storytelling and reading experience within a qualitative analysis and, if possible, offer creative solutions and alternatives for the writer to consider.
We expect you to bring the same level of commitment to this work. We have found that the biggest reason writers do not finish their manuscripts is because they fail to show up for themselves — there is always a reason or an excuse for why they can’t commit. Our goal is to help you finish, which is why this program is structured the way it is. It’s very intentional.
3. Does the author just want to get rich?
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with making money. We want you make tons of money from your book.
But we’re not like other self-publishing services that promise you that you book will get done fast, effortless, and by pure magic.
We don’t believe in “get rich” programs – only in hard work, adding value, building a real and professional career, and serving others with excellence and constancy.
There are no shortcuts and we don’t hold the secret to you becoming a bestseller.
If you can afford the time and effort to do it right, then Bobbin is the best place to start your book.
Our services are intended to help you share your message with a wider audience and to make a difference in the world while growing your personal brand. Our services take a lot of work and discipline just like any worthwhile endeavor or professional continuing education program.
Please don’t enroll in our services if you believe in the “money for nothing get rich quick” myth or ideology; we only want serious people dedicated to real professional development who want to add value and move humanity forward.
It might sound counter-intuitive, but the less our authors have focused on making money from book sales and more on providing value to their readers (writing the best book possible) is precisely how our authors have successfully set themselves up for making a ton of money–by using their professionally published book as a marketing tool.
Additionally, for non-fiction authors, there are two more criteria we use to decide which authors we’ll work with:
That’s why the first step in our process is a qualification process. If the result you’re hoping for is unrealistic or impossible, we can’t work with you, because there’s no way for us to win. Even if we do a great job and we nail the book, you might still be upset because you didn’t reach a goal that was impossible to begin with.
We give 100% of our effort to provide the best and most effective writing and publishing environment possible, and want our authors to have the same high standard. You owe it to yourself to give it your best!
Yes, definitely. Here is a partial list of the types of people who are not a good fit for our process.
The people who will read your Q&A answers varies depending on your program.
Your managing editor (the person who will be your main point of contact throughout your project’s journey) will be the first to read it in its entirety. They will use your answers to start building your “Lighthouse” document–you can think of it as your book’s strategy. A guiding light designed to help navigate your project toward a successful destination and avoid heading into difficult waters. Your managing editor will also use your Q&A answers to match you with publishing professionals from our tribe who are the absolute best fit for your project.
Your book coach will read your Q&A to get a sense of where you are in your writing journey so that you get a personalized, tailored a plan for your writing journey and your project. They will also have access to your lighthouse document.
Your editor will read your Q&A for the same reasons as your book coach. They will also have access to your lighthouse document.
Your book designer won’t have to read it in full, only the parts that will help them get a sense of your book’s themes, story or topic so that you get a beautiful design that perfectly fits the personality of your book. They will also have access to your lighthouse document.
Your book’s marketer won’t have to read it in full, only the parts that will help them get a sense of your book’s target audience so that your book has the impact and reach it deserves. They will also have access to your lighthouse document.
Your Q&A is super important to the success of your project! Everyone involved with your project will be invested in you and your project based on your responses to the questions.
It plays a huge role in us getting to know you better so that you get a high-level professional book.
Because it’s easy. It’s fast. It’s personal.
Hundreds of authors are getting some cool 1-on-1 engagement, access, opportunity and first looks. Just from texting with me.
I’ll show you a clear path to success: a system of proven strategies and unparalleled support.
You’ll be writing faster and smoother. You’ll finally finish your book and publish it.
That’s why I want to text you! To encourage you, hold you accountable, and push you toward achieving your publishing goals and making your dream of publishing your book a reality. In a real way.
See, here’s what drives me nuts!
Most people on the internet will ask you to sign up to their newsletter so they can sell you stuff.
And if your inbox is anything like mine, you probably receive way too many impersonal emails trying to sell you a bunch of crap that you don’t want.
I have zero interest in doing that to you.
So, I’m giving you my actual phone number, making myself vulnerable. Consider, there’s nothing stopping you from spamming me!
When you and I text each other, every text will be 100% from me.
Hearing from you directly means that I get more context about your specific needs and the goals you are trying to accomplish.
And together we’ll give your book its best chance at traditional or self-publishing.
I will send you various types of content via text as it pertains specifically to authors, books, writing and publishing.
It sounds like you might be concerned about privacy surrounding your data. And rightfully so. I totally get it and take your privacy very seriously.
I can’t stand companies that take advantage of my personal data. Spam texts and robocalls are super annoying and should be illegal.
And for further transparency, the service I’m using to connect with you via text is called SuperPhone®–used by celebrities such as Ashton Kutcher, Paul McCartney, Kerry Washington, Marshmello, Diddy, Jennifer Lopez, Cardi B, Gary Vaynerchuk, Diplo, Summer Walker, The Jonas Brothers, OneRepublic, Jake Paul, Lele Pons, QuestLove and more!
Types of content will vary. Some of the things I might send you include, but are not limited to:
Frequency will vary.
But I won’t text you every single day, 50x a day.
I promise I will never text bomb you. I take that very seriously.
I will text you only when it’s obvious you’ll get incredible value from the content.
Or to put it another way, I won’t ever text you unless the content will excite, inspire, entertain or educate you in such a profound way it motivates you to achieve your publishing goals.
I don’t want to waste your time or my own. I’ve had moments where I’ve hovered my thumb over the send button and then deleted the message, unsent because at the last second my heart told me that the content wouldn’t deliver the positive impact I’d intend.
That’s how much consideration I put into the content I text to you. Right up until I hit send, I’m still thinking about how you’ll benefit.
Additionally, on a selfish note, if I were to annoy you with irrelevant content, you’d block me and report me for spam. I’d get banned from my mobile phone carrier and suffer a large fine from the government, which doesn’t benefit me at all.
So, whenever you do actually receive a text from me, it’s because I truly feel like you’ll get something positive from it.
And if I’m ever wrong, you have permission to yell at me. You’re free to reply with your own insights, share your comments and disagree with me without fear of reprisal.
I’m a chill dude.
Plus, you can cancel/unsubscribe anytime.
All you have to do is text STOP and you’ll be automatically removed from my contacts and stop receiving my messages instantly.
And you can rejoin anytime to continue getting all the cool exclusives.
No risk. No commitment. No brainer.
Absolutely! Yes! Please do!
That’s why I’m opening up my phone number to you in the first place. My goal is for this to be a two-way communication between us both.
Once you’re in my contacts, you’ll have my real, actual phone number.
For every text you send me, I’ll get a text notification. Ya know, like normal.
And I don’t have any bots set up to send you auto-texts.*
I don’t have a team of people reading my texts and responding on my behalf either.
I’m not like a celebrity or anything. Just a dude who happens to want to help authors and who has the means to actually do it professionally.
I’m the only one reading the texts you send me. Every text you receive from me will be 100% from me.
I’m looking forward to hearing from you!
*Note: When you first sign up, you’ll receive two “auto-texts” as part of the standard enrollment process. I’ve edited those messages to make it obvious that they are auto-texts. But after that, no more bots. Every text that follows will be 100% from me.
The biggest difference is who you’ll be connecting with and how you interact with them.
Texting Michael directly is 1-on-1 and private – Sometimes you might need extra confidentiality when dealing with a delicate, personal, complicated issue. And to make it further worth your while, if you’re in my contacts, you won’t miss out on cool surprises (access, opportunity, rare discounts) that you can only get directly from me.
Bobbin Connected is a public community – We take extra care to add enough friction to the sign-up process of Bobbin Connected so that it remains an exclusive, private, invite-only membership community free from all the trappings and frustrations other writing groups face. And even after all those efforts, it’s still naturally public-facing unlike a text from Michael. As a member of Bobbin Connected, you’re interacting with a varied group of people from your peers to New York Times bestselling authors, award-winning editors, book designers, marketers and many other publishing professionals.
This is an interesting question and one to think about before you go any further.
When we want a new house, we hire other people to build it, don’t we?
We hire other people to decorate our houses, too.
We hire them to landscape our lawns and to paint our walls.
They install our carpeting and our bathroom tiles.
We generally get the credit for this sort of stuff.
When friends and family visit, they ‘ooh‘ and ‘awe‘ about our taste in decorating or about our new carpet, even though they know we did not do these things ourselves.
That’s because most people understand that, to be done right, such work requires a unique set of skills and talents.
Therefore people with those skills and talents must be hired to get these sorts of things done.
It’s the same with books.
Very few people know how to write a book.
Book writing requires a unique skill set—one that goes far beyond the mere ability to write.
In order to write a successful book, one must know quite a bit about the book market, the publishing process, and reading habits.
So, what are you paying for when you hire Bobbin?
As much as we will focus on outlines, word count, pages, and spelling, the core of the matter is that what you are paying for is to not have to think about that stuff.
We strive to embody your voice. We pore over hundreds of pages of interview transcripts, looking for patterns. We piece together ideas and build on our client’s genius.
This is reflected in the fact that most of our clients leave the process feeling like they wrote the book—only they typically save more than 300 hours of time in the actual writing process.
The reason you’re hiring us is because you either do not have the time to sit down and write that book, or because you don’t want to deal with the rest of the publishing process.
We know what your readers want to hear from you, we know how to extract the right information from you and we usually have a rate of 64 words-per-minute (wpm) or better, which means we can quickly write that book for you.
This is what you are essentially hiring a service like Bobbin for.
Your publishing team, will be led by your Managing Editor. They are your main point of contact and in charge of ensuring you get a great book.
Almost all of the writing will be done by your writer. They are a professional writer and editor that has spent at least a decade working in books.
You will conceptualize your book cover with the help of our Creative Director, who has done dozens of bestselling book covers. It will be designed by her or one of her teams, and you will talk to our Art Director for feedback and revisions.
Your marketing efforts will be led by our Marketing Director, and you will also work with his team of marketers during the launch.
Your book cover and manuscript interior layout will be designed by world class designers, but you have full creative control.
Our Creative Director has done dozens of New York Times Best Sellers, as well as the other book cover designers we’ve worked with. Combined, they have worked on over 100 best sellers that have sold millions of copies. You are getting the very best in design, because having a great book cover is a key to establishing your book as credible and professional.
Before we start the design process, you’ll have a long conversation with the Managing Editor to understand your vision for the cover (if you have any). We organize this information into a design brief and use it to create a series of initial cover designs, which you will review and give feedback on. Just like all parts of our process, you will have full, 100% approval of your cover.
Here’s something cool! You’ll get your own special channel created just for your project in our private Discord server Bobbin Connected.
It’s where the workflow, listening, strategies and insights happen. All the ideation happen with you in your project’s private channel.
Everyone (and only those) who works on your project (managers, editors, designers, etc.) will interact with the details of your project in this channel.
You can follow along the entire process and you get to be as involved or uninvolved as you want.
One of the coolest things about this process is that sometimes you’ll start coming up with ideas and we start making it happen right there in your channel on the Discord app.
It becomes a very humble, safe, “ideas” and “make” driven environment.
Not familiar with Discord? Discord is an all-in-one voice and text chat app that’s free, secure, and works on both your desktop and phone.
Discord is available on all platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS) and it also works directly within your browser (Chrome, Firefox, etc.) without having to download the app. Learn more about Discord here.
That’s precisely why you should talk to us before you start—We’ll help you make sure your idea is good enough for a book.
Our process does not work unless you actually have a book’s worth of ideas in your head to start. So the very first step in our process—before we start—is ensuring that you do, in fact, have a book in you.
Not everyone has a book in them, and we’re happy to tell you that, if that’s the case. We only want to work with people who have a good book idea that will be interesting to readers and bring the author a clear ROI.
No. You should call us first, because this is exactly what we do—help you figure out if you have a book in you and what it would be about—and we can and should do that before you decide to work with us.
We will help you understand not only what your best book is, but how it can help you. In the consult call, we will help you figure out the positioning of your book, and help you figure out what your book is about by running you through three questions:
This is a super common question we get from authors, though it’s rarely phrased this directly. Author fear is expressed in so many different ways, but it almost always breaks down to “I’m afraid I’m going to look stupid.”
The biggest unspoken fear that almost every author has is that they will embarrass themselves. Literally every author we’ve ever worked with—without exception—has had some version of this fear.
If you have this fear—or any other—you should tell us. We are experts at helping authors understand their fears and work through them. We take the fears and emotions of our authors very, very seriously, as they are core to the experience of writing a book.
We’ve found this to be the case with most authors—they actually have more than one book in them. Someone who has spent a lot of time gaining deep expertise in a field typically has a lot of knowledge that would be more interesting to people than they realize. For the majority of our Authors, the question is not whether they have a book in them, it’s how many, and which one should they publish first.
Our process is designed to help you figure out which book you should do first, and why. We begin by helping you to understand exactly why you’re writing a book, what results you want, which of your ideas will make the best book for you, and how to make it happen.
And note—we do this BEFORE you sign with us and get started. Before you commit to spending a dollar, we want to make sure we’re both a great fit for each other.
Bobbin Author Academy – You have the option of adding on additional services such as Bobbin Publishing, Bobbin Audiobook Creation and Bobbin Book Launch service. Alternatively, your book will be ready for traditional publishing if that’s your goal.
Bobbin Publishing – After your book is written, our book designers will create a beautiful book cover and then fully distribute your book through all major retailers (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.) You retina ll rights and 100% of all royalties. We’ll provide you with marketing materials from our designers so that you’ll be all set to promote your book on your websites and social media.
Bobbin Professional & Bobbin Luminary – We’ll publish your book and do all the marketing for you!
It’s fairly common for authors to be a little unhappy with their first draft, because it is common in all writing, regardless of whether an author works with us or not.
In an interview, author Neil Gaiman once recounted a time where he was about 3/4th done with a book, and he called the publisher to tell him that it was no good.
“The characters are bad, everything is trash,” Gaiman said.
At which point the publisher laughed and told Neil, “Do you know you do this on every single book? Just keep going.”
And Neil did, and the book was good.
This happens to Bobbin too! So, we totally get it.
Yet, more than 90% of our clients are happy with their first round of revisions.
But what if—after all the edits and changes—you don’t like your book?
We can’t 100% guarantee your happiness. We are not guaranteeing any specific outcome directly or indirectly attributed to this process. Always be wary of anyone making promises about the future success of your book. No one can predict any kind of turnout or guarantee a bestseller. Great books get passed over just as much as bad books get published.
Our goal is to give your book the strongest legs possible to run a competitive race in the commercial marketplace.
We wish we could guarantee your complete satisfaction. Truth is, some authors opt-in to get their book idea affirmed.
Some authors aren’t prepared to make a commitment to honesty, to digging deeper, to answering our plea to give us more, to take us further into an understanding of what you know and how you came to know it. Some authors would probably be better off writing the book themselves.
But, we will do everything we can on our end to ensure that you get the book you want. If it means multiple editing passes, then we’ll do that. We’ll keep tweaking until it’s just how you want it.
Many years ago, writer Jim Macdonald postulated “Yog’s Law,” a handy rule of thumb for writers about the direction money is meant to flow in publishing:
“Money flows toward the writer.”
This is handy because it will give the writer pause when she has a publisher (or agent, or editor) who says that in order to get published, the author needs to lay out some cash up front, and to that publisher/agent/editor. The author can step back, say, huh, this is not how Yog’s Law says it’s supposed to go, and then surmise, generally correctly, that the publisher/agent/editor in question is a scam artist and that she should run away as fast as her feet will carry her.
But Yog’s Law doesn’t apply in an age where many writers — and some even successfully — are self-publishing.
Yog’s Law takes a pause…
In self-publishing, authors are on the financial hook for the editorial services that publishers usually do: Editing, copy-editing, page and cover design and art, marketing, publicity and so on. In this case, unless the author does everything (which is possible but not advised if one wants a high-level, professional book), money is going to have to flow away from the writer, as she hired people to do work for her.
Once you are self-publishing, you take off your author hat and put on your publisher hat. You are now the publisher, and responsible for all the grim details of the process, including spending money.
But Yog’s Law kicks back in again…
In self-publishing, money and rights are controlled by the writer. And when the work is out there in the world, Yog’s Law continues to apply.
There are 3 super important things you get when you self-publish that you lose when you traditionally publish:
And Bobbin offers all the benefits of self-publishing plus the support of traditional publishing, including:
That’s what you’re paying for.
Look, you’re free to make up your own mind whether you want to traditionally publish or self-publish.
Our goal is simply to provide enough value so that you’re in a position to make an informed decision to best achieve your writing and publishing goals.
That depends on how you intend to make your money back. The best way to make money on a book is to look at it as an investment that leads to other profitable opportunities, and not book sales.
For example, if you’re a consultant or a coach and a client is worth $50,000 to you, then one client more than ROIs your investment in your book.
If you own a business and you sell a product that’s $150, then you need to sell at least 250 products from your book to make your money back. If your book is used to promote your business, then it is likely that the full cost of its production is tax deductible, which substantially lowers the full investment cost.
If you write fiction, then a film or TV option by one of the many streaming platforms (Netflix, Disney+, AppleTV+, etc.) superchargers your ROI. Streaming services need content to keep their subscribers on their platforms.
The one thing we do not recommend doing is calculating how many books you must sell to make your money back. This is because book sales is a poor measure for ROI.
Professionals see books as general marketing tools, not profit centers.
What matters is not how many people buy your book. But how many people care about your book enough to read it a bunch of times, recommend it to friends and becomes your life-long ambassador.
There are many ways to monetize a book. A book is also the best multi-purpose marketing tool there is. You can use a book to raise your visibility, develop your authority, generate leads for your business, bring you clients, get speaking gigs, sell products, launch businesses, and achieve many other objectives.
You can view a list of books our team has proudly worked on here, and most of them have been very successful.
Some results from our Authors include: multiple New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Amazon best sellers, countless media pieces, hundreds of millions in high-dollar consulting deals, New York Times profiles, celebrity endorsements…the list goes on and on.
Yes…but probably not in the way you are thinking.
Bobbin Media is self-publishing in the best sense: you have full creative control of your book, you own all the rights for your book, and you get all the royalties. It is the business model of self-publishing, with the support of traditional publishing.
When people ask, “Is this self-published?” what they tend to mean is, “Is this an unprofessional, amateurish book that you did without any help?”
To that, the answer is obviously no. The books we have done and the authors we have worked with are of the highest caliber, so clearly self-publishing can be very professional. You’re hiring us for that exact reason—to ensure that your book is as professional as any on the market.
Big difference. The most important difference to you is that with us, you completely own your book. With traditional publishing, they own your book. They take all your copyright for the life of your work.
“Traditional publishing” refers to the New York publishing houses that operate with a royalty based book model. If they decide to sign you to a book contract (which is very rare), they pay you an advance and own all the rights and royalties to your book. They do the work of publishing and distributing your book, but that’s it. They do little to market your book, and they provide no support while you write it. Plus, you must write what they want you to write, not what you want to write. Traditional publishing used to be highly prestigious, but now they mainly make money off the platforms that other people have built by monetizing their audience.
Bobbin is an entirely different approach to books—almost the complete opposite. You pay us for our services, and you own all the rights and royalties from your book.
Furthermore, we do everything a traditional publisher does, and a whole lot more. We not only help you write your book, we invented an entirely new process to turn your ideas into a book through conversational interviewing. We help you market your book, and we can even provide full platform support if necessary.
It boils down to the fact that there are only a limited spectrum of people for whom traditional publishing still makes sense, and for everyone else, they should use some form of professional self-publishing (like us).
Yes and no. This is a complicated question, because—again—the publishing business is so weird.
Yes, we can make your book available for order and sale in bookstores. All our books are put into the Ingram database, and can be ordered in every bookstore in the country.
No, we do not automatically put your book in bookstores. This is because bookstores carry very few books, and reserve their limited space for established authors or books from publishers who are paying for shelf space.
You generally need to sell at least 25,000 copies before bookstores become interested in carrying your book. That’s the bad news. The good news is that being in bookstores doesn’t really matter anymore. A book sitting on a shelf doesn’t sell in most cases. In terms of buyer-behavior, most people who shop at Barnes & Noble also shop on Amazon, so if they don’t see a book at Barnes & Noble they’ll just find it on Amazon. In other words, lack of bookstore distribution in and of itself doesn’t necessarily lose you very many sales. The reality is, for almost all authors, being in a bookstore is purely about ego, and not about actual ROI. We don’t deny that going into a bookstore and seeing your book on the shelf is nice, but it does almost nothing in terms of sales or awareness.
We don’t charge you anything for copies. You get to buy copies at the print cost. For print on demand paperback, Kindle Direct Publishing not only prints books for approximately $4 a copy when they’re ordered through Amazon, but they’ll sell the author these books at the same cost. At any time after the book is published, you can order copies in any quantities you’d like at this discounted price, direct from the printer (we don’t make money on copies).
If you are looking for a larger quantity of books (usually 1,000 or more), we set you up with a commercial offset printer to handle this request. They can provide better prices at large quantities. We take no markup.
There are three goals of the marketing that’s included in our package.
First, we manage the logistics to run an Amazon Bestseller Campaign that focuses on maximizing early sales, reviews, and rankings, all to build the foundation of early credibility for your book’s long term success.
Second, we support you in promoting the book to your connections by creating social media graphics for the book, crafting a book announcement email, gifting free copies to your friends and family, and creating a strategy for you to get the support of influencers who you know.
Third, we help you lay out a long term marketing plan to keep the early momentum going, and ensure the book reaches your long term goals.
By the end of the first week of your book release, your book should have Amazon bestseller status, a burst of early sales, a baseline of reviews, awareness among your network, and you should have a plan for how to continue to leverage it going forward.
Let me be straightforward with you: getting on the Amazon Bestseller list isn’t that big a deal.
Amazon divides their list into hundreds of categories and uses a relatively short time window for rankings, so with the right strategy, hitting #1 in your category is very easy.
However, this extra form of credibility does help as you use your book to secure media, book speeches, and share your book with potential clients.
To that end, we ensure that the marketing we do aligns into an Amazon Bestseller Campaign.
We discount the ebook to $0.99 for the first week, and concentrate our marketing efforts—the email to your connections, the release of a podcast episode, the publication of an excerpt, an email blast to tens of thousands of people, and much more—into that week, to maximize the short term sales and overall ranking.
An important note: These activities aren’t aimed only at hitting Amazon bestseller status. They are the best decisions for the success of your book, and hitting Amazon bestseller is a byproduct.
Getting on a media bestseller list (like the Wall Street Journal or New York Times) is a major endeavor, and from our experience, it usually doesn’t align with the real success of your book.
Each of these lists has their own rules, but the basic idea is the same: they measure total sales over the course of one week, and they have rules that people use to try to game them.
When authors try to hit the lists, they end up optimizing for these rules—racking up presales to distribute through indie bookstores, for example, or providing bonuses to their audience to bribe them into buying the book.
In our experience, rather than focusing attention on playing games to meet the criteria of a bestseller list, the best thing an author can do is focus on reaching people who genuinely want to read the book. This is a long term activity, and not something to try to squeeze into a one-week period.
In normal situations, the publisher of your book is Bobbin Publishing.
That being said, you don’t have to use Bobbin Publishing as your publisher.
Because of the way our structure works, we can essentially create a new publishing company for you with any name you like.
It’s completely up to you who the named publisher of the book is.
Today, the publishing imprint doesn’t have the same impact as it once had (and whatever impact that might’ve been is debatable).
Authors are like musicians in the respect that audiences are fans of their favorite bands, and not their favorite record label.
In the same vein, readers pour over the words of their favorite authors, and not their favorite publisher.
No one says, “Oh, it’s not published by Penguin Random House, so I’m not going to read that book.”
In general, audiences have no idea which publishers put out which books anyway.
Readers pay little attention, if any, to the publisher or the imprint of the books they select. Factors like cover appeal, description, and reviews carry far more weight than the publisher’s name, particularly a smaller imprint that’s not widely recognized.
Authors tend to focus on who publishes a book only when it’s their book on the line.
That’s because they desire to feel a sense of prestige, reputation and stature. And they believe that a “big-league” publisher will provide that.
Mostly because that’s an internal, self-fulfilling kind of emotion that no external person or company can deliver to a human being.
It comes from within. From YOU.
Meanwhile, your reader only cares about one thing: Does the book bring me value?
Our goal at Bobbin is to make sure your reader’s answer to that question is a resounding, “Hell Yeah!”
It will be the connection you’ve developed with your reader (not your publishing imprint, nor Bobbin) that will produce those feelings of esteem, appreciation and meaningfulness you seek because you’ve brought your reader value.
Writing the best possible book is the only metric that will lead to the prestige of publishing a project of true quality, the social status of having the admiration of readers, and the reputation of being a bestselling author.
Yes, you’re the sole author of your book, and it’s entirely in your voice. You are the only one contributing the ideas, the knowledge, and the content to the book. All we do is help you with the parts of book writing that you aren’t an expert at; positioning, structuring, etc.
We’re able to do this because the book is literally created entirely from interviews with you—there is no other voice it could be but yours.
Simply put, hiring a ghostwriter means that your book will not really be your ideas in your words. With the Bobbin process, your book is entirely your ideas and your words.
Ghostwriters start with your book concept and a few of your ideas, then create a book using their own words, tone, and voice. It won’t sound like it came from you, because it generally doesn’t. In essence, a ghostwriter writes a book, and you pay them so that you can put your name on it. It’s not really your book.
With Bobbin Elite, your book is authored solely by you. The ideas and words and content are entirely yours and are in your voice. We put nothing in your book that did not come out of your head and your mouth. We like to say that we help you translate your ideas into a proper, professional book, but all meaningful parts of authorship are yours, making you the sole author.
The two other differences are these:
If you don’t know what you’re talking about, then you need to hire a ghostwriter. That way the ghostwriter can do the research and write a book that makes sense, and you get to have your name on it.
The coolest part of the Bobbin Elite process is that you end up working with some of the very best editing and ghostwriting talent in the world—you just do it through our systematic and defined process. Many of our writers are former ghostwriters, but they love working with us (and our authors), because with us, they are able to avoid most of the problems that freelancers have: finding good clients, negotiating terms of the deal, collecting payment, limiting the scope of the work, etc.
Our systematic process is actually better for authors and for freelancers, because it creates a clear set of expectations and deliverables, a defined workflow, and ensures there is a trusted third party—Bobbin—to monitor everything and ensure that it works. Our roster of freelancers includes Pulitzer Prize winners, Emmy Award winners, bestselling authors, bestselling ghostwriters, etc.
This creates a three-way relationship where everyone wins: you publish a great book, the freelancer gets paid well for work they enjoy, and we make a profit by coordinating the whole exchange.
No, authors do not choose their own writer. That is why you are paying us—to do that.
To begin with, we thoroughly vet and test all our writers. It’s easier to get into Harvard (6% acceptance rate) than it is to work with us as at Bobbin (<1% acceptance rate). Not only that, but our writers have spent at least a decade (usually longer) in writing and publishing, and many of them are highly decorated—Pulitzer Prize winners, Emmy nominees and winners, and National Magazine Award winners.
To assign writers, we have an internal “ask system” that we use to pair up the right writer and Author. Here’s how it works:
We get to know you, your book, and how you work. Then we create a “Project Scope” for your book, and let all 100+ writers see it. They will read it, and the ones who are interested in working on your book ask to be assigned.
They answer two questions: 1. Why are you excited to work on this book, and 2. What do you bring to the book that might help the author?
We review all the bids (books typically get between 5-10 bids), and then pick the one we think will be the best match—95% of the time, this process works great.
But yes, in rare cases, the Author and writer are not a fit. If after working together, they feel uncomfortable or unwilling to move forward with the project, we’re happy to find a replacement writer. Given that every book has multiple bids, this makes it simple to find good replacements.
You want your book done as soon as possible. That’s why you’re hiring someone to write it for you, isn’t it?
While hiring Bobbin comes with the benefit of actually getting the book done (when the idea may have been rolling around your head for months, or even years), it’s important to be realistic with time frames.
The time it takes to finish an entire book varies depending on many factors such as length and scope of the project.
If you work at our speed, we are comfortable promising a completely finished book within 8 months (sometimes a little shorter).
But you can go slower, if you need to.
From the initial interview to the final proofread, can take as little as 3 months, though we’ve had cases where this has stretched out due to the book getting stuck with the client over the revision period.
Our job is to make sure your book is gripping and delivers a powerful emotional experience to your audience.
Your book’s quality is equally as important as getting your book written quickly!
Yes and no.
Many Authors come to us having written quite a bit of material. Regardless of what they have written, we always start at the beginning of our process and work through the positioning, and structuring stages. After the structure is done, we can assess whether any of your existing writing fits into the book. If it does, great. We will happily slide it in.
We do it this way because we’ve found that starting fresh enables the author to prioritize exactly what they want to get from their book, what audience they need to reach, and what they have to offer that audience (this is positioning).
Often when this becomes clear, it turns out that what they’ve written is not directly on point for the end result they want, and we don’t want pre-existing material to bias decisions or lead them astray.
Book length is entirely dependent on the specific Author and the topic of their book. We don’t adhere to a fixed length, but generally find that most nonfiction authors end up around 150 pages.
We’ve researched this extensively and found that for non-fiction books this is the optimal length—both for Authors and their readers. It is not an intimidating length, so readers are more likely to buy and actually read the book, and it’s about the right length for most Authors. The book is substantive, but not repetitive or padded. We believe that books should only be as long as they have to be in order to make their point.
Lots of words might mean you’ll have a lot more “fluff” in the content than valuable content, which is one reason word count is so important.
Novels have word counts varying between 90,000 words and 250,000 words, which is the average size of word count in each of the Harry Potter books.
The average nonfiction book, if such a thing exists, runs about 50,000 to 75,000 words, but this can vary depending upon category.
Biographies, for example, can run 200,000 words. How-to’s or Self-Help usually have 40-50,000 words.
Popular memoirs range quite a bit from about 60,000 words to 120,000 or more.
However, we recommend staying on the shorter side, perhaps around the 75,000 word mark. That’s a great length, because it gives you room to tell your whole story in detail, without boring your audience with too much detail.
The important thing for your story is that your length fits your book. We write as much as it takes to tell the story, and no more.
Consider that asking for faster turnaround times puts a lot of pressure on the writer. We strongly discourage rush jobs because good writing takes time.
Our job is to make sure your story is gripping and delivers a powerful emotional experience to your audience.
Your story’s quality is equally as important as getting your book written quickly!
With that in mind, we are not comfortable delivering a book in 30 days.
The main difference is how much time it takes you, and who actually writes out the content of the book.
In Elite Accelerator, you’ll use our full process, but you will do the writing and typing yourself (with our guidance and support the entire way, described here). This option usually requires you to spend about an hour of writing a day for 6+ months.
In Bobbin Professional, all you have to do is get on the phone, and talk about what you already know. We handle all the typing and writing for you, but the words and ideas and voice are still entirely yours. This option only requires about 1.5 hours on the phone per week.
There are two main questions to ask yourself:
Generally speaking, assume that Elite Accelerator ($15k) requires an hour a day for a year (yes, you can do it faster), and that Bobbin Professional ($36k) requires 1.5 hours a week for 7 months.
If the answer to both questions is yes—you like writing and you have time—then Elite Accelerator is probably the right option.
If the answer to both questions is no—you don’t like writing and you don’t have time—then Bobbin Professional is probably the right option.
The difficulty comes if the answer to #1 is yes (you do like writing) but the answer to #2 is no (you don’t have time). Then you’ll have to decide what gives: do you make time for writing, or do you value your time too much, and want us to do the typing for you?
That option is not right for most authors. It’s intended for those authors who require the very best ghostwriter possible, they need the ghostwriter to come to them, and they want a fully custom program that includes all marketing and promotion.
Almost all authors are better off with Elite Accelerator ($15k) or Bobbin Professional ($36k).
Our packages are listed as is. There are never any hidden fees.
This can be challenging to get right – it’s hard to know what type of service a ghostwriter will provide until you see them in action, but you won’t see them in action until they start working on your book… it’s a Catch-22 with a substantial price tag at stake.
Hiring a ghostwriter is a great way to ensure your book gets written.
However, in many cases the downsides outweigh the benefits, which means some alternatives might be a better match.
There are a range of benefits to hiring a ghostwriter rather than trying to write your book yourself.
It will actually get done!
This is the single biggest benefit of hiring a ghostwriter. What had been a dream for years could become a reality within six months of engaging a ghostwriter.
It will get done faster.
In many cases, a ghostwriter can finish a book faster than you could on your own. Experienced ghostwriters develop systems and structures to streamline the writing process, which means that when you think of your book idea, the hard work has already been done for you.
It will take less of your time.
How long would it take you to write and research a book yourself? In most cases, authors spend at least 100, but sometimes 500+ hours writing, researching and revising their books. With a ghostwriter, you can cut that down to anywhere between 10 and 30 hours of your time, depending on the revisions required.
You don’t need to figure out how to write a book.
One of the most common things authors say is, ‘I learned so much from writing my book!’ This can be a rewarding experience, but it’s also time consuming with a lot of trial and error, and often the real work doesn’t start until during the editing process when authors finally get professional feedback on their book. Ghostwriting skips that entire process.
Although there are a range of benefits to working with a ghostwriter, there are also a number of downsides that mean this approach isn’t a match for everyone. Some of these include:
The cost of ghostwriting.
Most people assume that ghostwriting is pretty expensive… and they’d be right. So how much does a ghostwriter cost? Any ghostwriter charging under $15,000 probably isn’t very good.
There are no guarantees for quality.
When you pay a ghostwriter, you are often paying them a large sum of money with no idea of what the end result might be. If you find a good ghostwriter, you might end up with a fantastic book delivered on time. If not, you could find yourself paying a lot of money for a book that runs over time (throwing out your publishing schedule) or that is subpar. (Note that this risk can be mitigated by finding the right ghostwriter.)
The process will still take some of your time.
One of the things we always tell our clients up front is that they will need to be available to work on the book throughout our process. This may be for interviews at the beginning of the process, answering questions during the writing process, or reviewing and providing feedback on drafts. We try to limit this time, but if they are not available, the book won’t be as good as it could have been, and time frames can blow out as we wait for feedback.
You only get a manuscript.
The ghostwriting process (and fee) only covers the writing of your book – it doesn’t cover design, printing, distribution or any other parts of the publishing process. Unless you’re working with an end-to-end provider, like Bobbin, who is providing the full service, you will still need to manage and pay for the rest of the process yourself.
There are a number of common worries and concerns that come up when clients inquire about ghostwriting services.
Interestingly, not all of them mean that you need a ghostwriter – some concerns can be addressed by working with a writing coach, and some can even be addressed by working with a good structural editor.
Consider the concerns below:
‘I’m not a writer.’
This is the most common concern we hear. The good thing is that you don’t need to be a writer to write a good book. In fact, we’ve worked with over 150 aspiring authors and only three of them had a professional writing background! Instead, as long as you have a lot of knowledge to share, the state of your first draft doesn’t really matter – a good structural editor will pull it apart and put it back together, turning your brain dump into a book that is credible, compelling and, best of all, coherent.
‘I don’t know how to get all of my ‘stuff’ out of my head.’
This is where a good writing coach could help, and this is exactly what our Founder, Michael Martin used to help people with private coaching – he would get clear on their idea, map out their entire book, and they’d then have a clear blueprint to write their first draft around. It’s also why we’re developing Author Academy based on Michael’s techniques.
‘I don’t have the time.’
Writing a book doesn’t take as long as you think. My Story Structure Template streamlines the process by helping you create a blueprint so detailed your book will write itself – in fact, I used this framework to write my fantasy novel in 30 days! While I don’t recommend a 30-day writing spree (between you and me, it was a bit intense), having a clear blueprint makes it easier to get your book out in a month or two, even if you only have 30 – 60 minutes a day.
‘I just want to get it done!’
So why don’t you? If it’s because you just haven’t made the time or gotten around to it yet, make the time! Start getting up an hour earlier to write, or take off a couple of weeks in a cabin in the woods to start writing. If there really is no way you can do it yourself, then I’d consider engaging a ghostwriter, but remember that you’ll still need to be involved when it comes to answering questions and reviewing drafts.
In short, being short on time and not being a natural writer are not reasons to hire a ghostwriter – they are reasons to get a bit of extra support around the writing process, such as a coach, a great editor or even a writing framework you can use, but a ghostwriter is optional.
The main reason we’d consider engaging a ghostwriter is if you’re in a position where you’ve been wanting to write a book for years and just aren’t getting it done.
If you’ve realized that it’s just not going to happen if you’re on your own, then a ghostwriter can turn your idea into a publishable draft.
The same applies for if your request is for a biography of somebody else, often a parent or grandparent with heroic war stories or tales of escaping from tyranny.
Or even a biography of someone you admire or the founder of your company.
When you’re ready to hire a ghostwriter, the key is asking the right questions up front.
Different book types are … different. Horror stories are different to young adult vampire romances, poetry is different to erotic romance, and even nonfiction book types vary with memoirs and interview books being very different to how-to books.
Each of these book types is written in a different structure, includes different content and often uses a different tone of voice. This means each of these book types requires a highly specialised skill set.
To get the best result, you want to find a ghostwriter who specialises in the type of book you want to write.
If you want to write a how-to book, you should start by looking for a ghostwriter with proven experience writing how-to books. If you want to write your memoir, look for a ghostwriter with experience writing memoirs.
Our tribe of writers have worked in all genres. Fiction and nonfiction options are available.
Nonfiction Options Overview
Fiction Options Overview
We get lots of fiction-writing queries from people who have developed intriguing plots and even created whole fantasy worlds…but they just can’t spin a story well enough to grip their audience.
We’ve been hired to write:
Note: At this time, we do not ghostwrite for children’s books (under 13 years), short stories, textbooks or other non-narrative works such as rap lyrics.
The cost of self-publishing a book can vary dramatically depending on the quality of the book you want to produce and the suppliers you work with.
Ghostwriting is no different.
How much a ghostwriter costs will vary on a number of factors, including:
How long your finished book will be.
Longer books take longer to write. This means they cost more, as the time spent working on your book takes your ghostwriter away from other potential projects.
The amount of existing material you have.
If you already have an extensive collection of blog posts, articles, podcasts and other content, you may be able to negotiate a lower rate, as there will be less writing for your ghostwriter to do. However, we recommend giving them some time to review everything before coming to you with a final quote, as it doesn’t matter how much content you have if most of it isn’t useable.
Whether you will be bringing in more work.
As with many things, it pays to buy in bulk! If you’d also like your writer to write a year’s worth of blog posts or to do some smaller booklets for you along with the main book, consider asking them to quote it all at once – they may be willing to provide a discount if you buy everything at once.
So, how much should you pay?
There is no set industry standard for ghostwriting fees; therefore, price quotes widely vary between professionals.
Ghostwriter’s can charge per hour, per page, per project or per word.
Researching prices, the range we’ve seen professional writers charge is from $0.25 to $3 per word.
Ideal book length for something like a memoir would be 75,000 words long, which turns out to be (depending on page layout, typeface, leading and other factors) between 250 and 300 pages. That’s a great length, because it gives you room to tell your whole story in detail, without boring your audience with too much detail. The price for a book that size ranges from a total of $18k – $75k. Keep in mind that’s just for the manuscript itself (no book cover, no distribution, no marketing, etc.)
That said, well-established Ghostwriters can command $100,000 to $250,000+, in addition to a share of your advance and some of your royalties. And because they’re so well-known, they usually have a backlog of clients waiting to work with them. And sometimes they work on a referral basis only.
Tucker Max, the founder of Bobbin, says that ‘If you cannot afford more than $15,000 for a ghostwriter, you should probably NOT hire one.’ His reasoning is that anyone charging less than $15,000 is probably not very good.
The reality is that you get what you pay for.
The best-case scenario is that they are new to the industry and are trying to build out their portfolio, while the worst-case scenario is that they are plagiarizing other work or outsourcing to offshore writers.
Our writers at Bobbin reduce their rates when working with us because we eliminate the unpaid time they would normally spend finding the client, negotiating the deal, admin work, etc. What most writers find is that though the rate is a little less with us, they actually make more money in total, and their quality of life goes up because they are doing less work that they don’t like.
And this means our authors won’t be paying $75k just for a manuscript, and have to separately find and hire an editor, then a proofreader, then a book designer, and still have to do their own marketing.
Instead, you pay Bobbin a much smaller $36k, not only for your book, but you also get professional editing, proofreading, book design, full distribution to all major retailers and a high-level marketing strategy.
Our service isn’t the cheapest by any means, but you won’t pay six-figures (unless you choose our custom Luminary option). We also don’t ask for shares of your advance or your royalties.
What is discord?
Discord is an all-in-one voice and text chat app that’s free, secure, and works on both your desktop and phone.
Discord is available on all platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS) and it also works directly within your browser (Chrome, Firefox, etc.) without needing to download the app. Learn more about Discord here: https://discordapp.com
We invest a lot of time and resources in your success even before you start. To operate, Bobbin charges a yearly fee of $365 for access to the private publishing community Bobbin Connected. The fee allows us to develop the product, curate our community and offer customer support and satisfaction guarantees.
A problem that plagues a lot of free access communities is spam. They become breeding grounds for people either trying to sell their services or promote their own content. Neither of which is conducive to building a thriving community. This was our main motivation for charging a fee to access Bobbin Connected.
We spent a lot of time thinking through pricing. It needed to be enough money that people would be motivated to really make use of their membership and act in a way that’s beneficial to the community at large, but not too much money that it became cost prohibitive to the people who would benefit from the most.
So in the spirit of transparency, your contribution to the community goes directly toward:
Discord is free, but your time, your effort, and your ambition is super valuable. You deserve to work with people who are just as serious as you are about writing and publishing your book.
Bottom line: you get what you pay for. Having a charge is a filter to control ridiculousness. There are lots of writers who waste, not only their own time, but everyone else’s time as they never finish their books and they never publish. And we use the yearly fee to filter out those people–95% of the time, this process works great.
But yes, in rare cases, a member worms in who isn’t a good fit for our beloved community. If after fair warnings from Moderators, the member is unwilling to adhere to the Bobbin Community Values, we reserve the right to remove them from Bobbin Connected for the benefit of the community as a whole.
But again, this is a rare occurrence because our authors are awesome!
Slack is no doubt a great platform.
And Bobbin has given both the Slack and Discord platforms a solid go. We thoroughly tested which platform worked best for our workflow and daily operations–which is kinda the most important thing to consider.
And we’ve found that our authors, our readers, our freelancers and our employees prefer the flexibility, ease of use, friendliness, and the overall community format of Discord.
Discord isn’t perfect. It doesn’t have as many extra features as Slack, and far less integrations. But Discord does have community-built bots which meet our needs, effectively. Plus, things like Zapier and Integromat fills in any other integration gaps quite efficiently.
The only features that Discord doesn’t have over Slack, from a business perspective, is threaded conversations and drawing during screen share. But we’re okay with losing those features. It’s not detrimental to our goals.
Our goal is to build, provide and maintain a community of various types of publishing professionals as well as non-professionals.
And while Slack is much better than Discord when it comes to serving the business side of things because they leaned hard into the business space.
Discord is amazing at serving both sides (business and gaming) at once… even though Discord 100% caters only to their target demographic: gamers.
It’s interesting how that plays out. It seems Discord can easily pivot and eclipse Slack.
Historically, platforms have a common trajectory in which they start out as non-professional until the community at large adopts it at scale making the platform more attractive to professionals. All you have to do is take a look at the history of MySpace, Tumblr, YouTube, Facebook (including Messenger), Twitter, WhatsApp, Instagram… and yes, even Slack!
Slack started as a gaming company called Tiny Speck in 2009.
The only anomaly in social media is LinkedIn since it’s roots and nature were born in the professional realm.
At the end of the day, every platform is simply a tool that when used correctly can help you achieve your specific result.
And for Bobbin, Discord helps to solve communication needs, file transfers requirements, and many more things. As I mentioned, it’s incredibly flexible. And the tribe at Bobbin loves using it!
Bobbin makes extensive use of Discord’s:
Bottomline, it’s not what you have, it’s how you use it. And Discord’s design and service is so friendly, that all of its elements combined make Discord feel professional.
The more detail, the better. This might include a synopsis of the plot from start to finish, character profiles (incl. goals, motivations, conflicts and backstories), scene breakdowns, and sample scenes. Bobbin can also provide an outline template if needed; please contact us for this prior to ordering.
Yes! We’ll be happy to create a custom word order for you. You also have the opportunity (optional, with additional fee) to add as many manuscript pages as you’d like us to read (beyond the scene already covered within the scope of the base program). For example, you may want a “first quartile” analysis, up through the First Plot Point – as many as 100 pages, give or take – which is a valuable window into how your story has been setup and thrust into motion. Extra pages are read at a prorated rate of $25 per 1000 words, up to 25K words (in addition to the normal fee).
It includes comments inserted throughout the text you submit, as well as an in-depth report summarizing key insights and recommendations.
In short, because in 15 – 30 minutes your editor can cover up to three times the amount of feedback included in a text report. After 5 years of working solely in developmental editing, we’ve found this to be the best way to offer value for a writer.
Delivery turnaround is two weeks (unless your editor notifies you up front of a backlog that could delay beyond that period).
You’re invited to respond, clarify and revise, based on the feedback you’ll receive, or ask questions from that context. (Further iterations, if requested, can be negotiated from there.)
We’re here to help you craft a great opening hook for your novel, and it’s difficult to assess the continuity, pace, and engagement of a scene, when it’s taken out of context. For that reason we only accept prologues and opening chapters for this service.
Short answer: Yes.
Longer answer: The choice is ultimately yours. But we suggest the following a 3-step process before spending a dollar on any editor:
These 3 steps work tremendously for our authors. Admittedly, it’s a process that we’ve stolen from bestselling author Neil Gaiman.
This is an easy way to improve your book. Anyone who’s written knows how important it is to get lots of eyes on your text!
Ideally, beta readers are free. They’re often family, friends, members of your writing group, or maybe readers you connect with on Facebook or Goodreads. We’re advocates for free beta readers!
But authors know it can be hard to get quality beta reader feedback: some beta readers give short and vague feedback, some beta readers do nothing but praise because they’re either afraid to hurt your feelings or they think magic shoots from your fingertips, and some beta readers never send you their feedback at all. Worse, if your beta reader isn’t well-read in your specific genre, their feedback may actually lead you astray!
Virtually every writer who’s received critique partner or beta reader feedback (and sometimes this includes feedback from supposedly professional editors) has horror stories. Most of us have come across critiquers who insult us and/or our writing. Or those who try to steamroll our voice or rewrite the story to match their vision.
Those horror stories are shockingly common. But when you work with Bobbin:
That said, the Bobbin Connected service as well as the Bobbin Early Reader program is entirely optional. Whether or not you join is a decision that’s totally up to you. You are not obligated to pay anyone for access to beta readers. Ever.
At this time, we’re accepting books in the following genres:
We give our beta readers 4 weeks to complete a manuscript and submit their comments.
It should be noted that Early Readers are not employed full-time with Bobbin. They’ve volunteered to participate in this program because they genuinely want to help you write the best book possible. And we respect their lives, commitments, personal obligations and schedules to allow them the autonomy and flexibility to fit our process into their lives as best they can.
That said, our goal is for you to get your feedback quickly. And we’ve found that our readers sometimes deliver as fast as 1 week turnaround.
Once we have received those comments, our team will compile your feedback form and send it to you within the next week. In total, expect the entire process to take 4-6 weeks.
That’s no problem! You can withdraw from the Early Reader program at any time.
Our early readers vary widely – they’re bookworms of all ages, from all locations, and with an interest in every type of genre.
Yes. If you are already a member of Bobbin Connected, you may also apply to join the Bobbin Early Reader team!
Once accepted into the tribe of Bobbin readers, your Bobbin Connected membership does not change. You will continue to receive all the benefits that come with membership. You will also be given an additional role in Discord called Bobbin Early Reader.
YES. Our writers are professionals, bestsellers and award winners who love writing engaging, dramatic stories. But even they still have a developmental editor to show them issues with their work they’re too close to see. Plot holes, weak characters, flat moments; a developmental editor will make a good book, a great one.
The editor is the last person to receive the manuscript. When the author has completed writing his or her book, it is then sent to the editor, who polishes it and checks it for accuracy.
The editor proofreads the book, checking it for spelling, punctuation, and grammar errors, and also ensures consistency throughout the story, correcting any areas which conflict.
For instance, if the author stated that the main character had brown hair, but later changed that to blonde hair, the editor would catch that and correct it.
The editor also ensures proper word usage, verb tense, and consistent tone is used throughout. They look for areas which lack clarity, or are choppy or redundant. They are adept at making sure the book follows a consistent pace, flows well, and transitions between thoughts and ideas.
Some editors perform a minimal level of ghostwriting to meet these ends, and some provide suggestions to the author for alternate wording or layout of chapters; however, they are not expected to totally rewrite and/or rearrange the content of the book.
When the editor is finished, the book is ready to be formatted for print.
One of the most confusing parts of the editing process is simply understanding the different types of edits and which stage of the publishing process they should occur.
There are line-edits and copy-edits, proofreading and manuscript critiques, and that’s just the beginning. For the new author, the whole editing process can feel overwhelming, especially if you’re not sure which one to choose for your manuscript.
To help you decide which stage of the editing process your manuscript requires, we’ve provided a standard timeline:
A Bobbin Manuscript Evaluation is considered a developmental edit. And it is Phase 1 of a standard editing timeline that your manuscript goes through.
You also might hear people use the phrases “manuscript critique”, “editorial assessment”, “structural editing” or “substantive editing” in place of developmental editing – they’re the same thing.
We call it a Bobbin Manuscript Evaluation because of the extra special sauce we include.
Developmental editing is a form of writing support that comes into play before or during the production of a publishable manuscript, especially in the area of non-fiction writing.
It is a full read and review of your project. Which is an overall manuscript review, providing feedback on the structure of your book.
A developmental editor may guide an author in conceiving the topic, planning the overall structure, and developing an outline—and may coach authors in their writing, chapter by chapter. It’s common for developmental editors to add or eliminate characters in a fiction story, ideas or concepts in a nonfiction story, and to assist the author with the story line.
A developmental editor might suggest moving entire chapters or presenting them from a different perspective. They are fundamental in the overall development of the book, but while some do contribute some level of ghostwriting to enhance the flow of the material, they are not usually responsible for the actual writing of the manuscript.
Authors retain control over the document and are responsible for providing the content. An editor who creates content is no longer an editor but a ghostwriter.
At Bobbin, your editor will deliver your edit in the form of a letter, which includes an in-depth analysis of how well each story element is working as well as a chapter-by-chapter breakdown.
It does not include a proofread (sentence-by-sentence line-edit for punctuation, spelling, grammar) or a copy-edit (style).
Your editor will read through your manuscript twice. The first one is to read it as a reader, and pick up what they can and enjoy what they can. The second time, they’ll read it as an editor.
The purpose of the first read-through is to find out what you are trying to accomplish.
What are you trying to get your reader to feel here? What is your purpose? Are you saying it clearly?
And for the most part, by the time your editor gets to the end of the manuscript, she can tell what you’re trying to get to. If she can’t, then she’ll get to have a conversation with you and help pinpoint what you wanted to do, what’s still stuck inside you head. Then your editor helps get you there.
The Manuscript Assessment includes advice on:
The chapter-by-chapter breakdown assesses the quality of each chapter independently. Each chapter typically receives 1-3 paragraphs of feedback.
And it will have two columns. One column will be “reader” feedback.
What did your editor get from the page?
Just so that you can see that, because it is helpful. The other column will be “editor” feedback.
Each chapter is assessed for things such as:
The chapter-by-chapter outline helps point out things like: more description here, the dialogue’s happening in a void, create more here.
In the report, your editor also talks about writing elements that you might be weak on. But instead of repeating the same advice you’ve heard before (show, don’t tell), your editor will make it specific to you and your writing style. Like, “I can see that you’re trying to show and not tell here, but let’s try doing it this way so it’s more effective for you.”
Having that personal one-on-one advice, we’ve seen really great growth in the writers that we work with.
Feedback from a Manuscript Evaluation can lead to significant changes to your manuscript. The assessment will identify your book’s strengths and weaknesses, and help you devise a revision strategy that dramatically improves the execution of your idea.
A Manuscript Evaluation can be useful at several stages in the writing process. Some writers may seek this deep-level feedback once the first draft is completed. Others might solicit an assessment after the manuscript has been through several rounds of beta reading or even professional editing; an assessment provides the kind of careful reading that leads to better theming, nuance, characterization and structure. A manuscript assessment can even be valuable if you have already self-published a book.
WARNING: A Manuscript Evaluation is for writers who are serious about taking their work to a commercial level. If you are not ready for professional criticism then it is not for you.
A Bobbin Manuscript Edit is considered an industry standard line-edit. And it is Phase 2 of a standard editing timeline that your manuscript goes through.
You also might hear people use the phrase “comprehensive edit” in place of line-edit – they’re the same thing.
We call it a Bobbin Manuscript Edit because of the extra special sauce we include.
A line-edit addresses the creative content, writing style, and language use at the sentence and paragraph level. But the purpose of a line edit is not to comb your manuscript for errors – rather, a line-edit focuses on the way you use language to communicate your story to the reader. Is your language clear, fluid, and pleasurable to read? Does it convey a sense of atmosphere, emotion, and tone? Do the words you’ve chosen convey a precise meaning, or are you using broad generalizations and clichés?
An editor may draw your attention to:
WARNING: A Manuscript Edit is for writers who are serious about taking their work to a commercial level. If you are not ready for professional criticism then it is not for you.
A copy-edit is Phase 3 of a standard editing timeline that your manuscript goes through.
Copy-editing is the process of checking for mistakes, inconsistencies, and repetition. During this process, your manuscript is polished for publication.
Contrary to popular belief, the copy-editor is not a glorified spell checker.
The copy-editor is your partner in publication. He or she makes sure that your manuscript tells the best story possible. The copy-editor focuses on both the small details and the big picture. He or she must be meticulous and highly technical, while still aware of the overarching themes at work within your manuscript.
Copy-editing is the final step before production. It should be done after all other edits take place.
Copy-editing is one step up in terms of comprehensiveness, and copy-editing rates for your manuscript usually cost between $.02 and $.04 per word. Some copy-editors charge by manuscript page, in the range of $2.50 to $5 per page.
At Bobbin, copy-editing is included in our Bobbin Publishing, Bobbin Professional, and Bobbin Luminary services and cannot be purchased separately at this time.
Proofreading is Phase 4 of a standard editing timeline that your manuscript goes through. It is the final stage of editing. It occurs after your book has been formatted for print or digital distribution—after you get it back from your formatter or book designer. Proofreading occurs when your book is in its final form—in the environment in which your reader will read it.
For print books, proofreading will occur on a PDF. For an ebook, the proofreader will view your book as an epub or mobi file—on a Kindle, perhaps—and keep a list of any changes that need to be made in the master file. Any corrections that the proofreader suggests will need to be addressed by your formatter or designer. If you’re the formatter or designer, you’ll be the one making the corrections.
The proofreader will also look for errors that have been introduced during the formatting and design process. That’s right! Every time someone touches your book manuscript for any reason, the possibility of introducing errors exists. So the fewer changes you have to make at the proofreading stage, the better.
You also need to consider the kinds of changes that make sense at the proofreading stage. Because formatting or designing a book involves placing and finessing text so that things look and operate correctly, you don’t want to be rewriting or shuffling sentences at the proofreading stage. In the case of print, even inserting a word could cause the words in a sentence to bunch up or spill over to the next line and affect the spacing of a sentence or paragraph. This can upset a carefully planned print layout. Instead, you’ll only want to make the tiniest of changes, so that you don’t disturb the layout of your book.
Your proofreader will be looking for language errors and formatting errors —missing words, typos, punctuation errors, spelling and formatting inconsistencies—the smaller things that have slipped through previous stages of editing.
A basic proofreading service of your manuscript usually cost between $.01 and $.02 per word. Some proofreaders charge by manuscript page, in the range of $1.50 to $3.50 per page.
At Bobbin, proofreading is included in our Bobbin Publishing, Bobbin Professional, and Bobbin Luminary services and cannot be purchased separately at this time.
You deserve for us to be totally upfront with you. Yes, Bobbin’s editorial services are not price competitive.
If this truly is a make-or-break moment for your financial situation, I’ll make it easy for you: X out of this website.
I grew up on welfare so I’ll never be one of those people who tells you to max your credit card or borrow money from a friend to purchase our services.
I’ll give you a virtual hug, an air kiss, and send you on your way with love!
If that’s not you, and you’re just feeling some garden-variety investment anxiety, let’s talk.
I understand you want to know if you’re getting your money’s worth. You want to feel secure in your decision-making process.
Is Bobbin actually worth our asking price or can you get a better return on your investment somewhere else?
The short answer is: you get to make up your own mind.
I’m not going to try to pitch you a load of bullshit about how great we are.
We understand that this is a BIG DEAL for you! Fees suck.
And we spent a lot of time thinking through pricing. It needed to be enough of a premium that authors would be motivated to really make use of the service and act in a way that’s beneficial to their publishing journey, but not too much money that it became cost prohibitive to the people who would benefit from it the most.
Truth is, some writers opt-in to get their book affirmed. They aren’t open to criticism or being told that something is in need of further work, or they don’t agree to the specificity of that need within our feedback.
Our goal at Bobbin is to give your story the strongest legs possible to run a competitive race in the commercial marketplace.
And we’ve found that many freelance editors charge such small fees because it’s critical that they work with “any” author that comes along as opposed to the author who’s the best match for their skillset, preferences and motivations.
This is due to the fact that they generally have trouble finding clients and need to edit any book they can get their hands on in order to sustain they careers.
Turning down work could mean not being able to pay their bills.
It’s like if a restaurant were to charge customers per bite of food. Not only would that be super weird, most patrons would only eat until they were merely satisfied, and wouldn’t finish everything on their plate so that they can save as much money as possible.
It would make for a much slimmer culture. Plus, it would cause the restaurant to lose money. The restaurant would be forced to start using cheap ingredients which would lower the quality of the food they serve to you.
A race to the bottom where no one wins.
And when it comes to publishing, it’s the authors who suffer because they end up with poorly edited manuscripts.
And the readers ultimately lose because they end up with unreadable, crappy books.
Ok, wait. Can you get quality editing at an affordable price? Of course you can. No doubt about it. That exists. Somewhere.
We’re not trying to convince you otherwise. Most freelance editors do incredible work because they truly want to help you write the best book possible. Plus, their reputations are on the line.
Bobbin is highly empathetic to the challenging circumstances that all freelancers face, which is why we would never hold that against them. We support them. Many have joined our tribe to escape that harsh reality. For them, our business model is a dream come true.
With Bobbin they have an unlimited number of really great authors and interesting books to pick from. They get to choose to work only on the projects that excite and inspire them and they only have to focus on editing—giving our authors the support and resources of an entire company to help you create the best possible book. Which makes for happier published authors, high-quality published books, and delighted readers!
Imagine a high-level and experienced editor, building an intimate relationship with you and your book to help you write something important and incredibly valuable to readers.
Here’s the deal:
Freelance editors want to be able to choose only to work with the authors who are the best fit, and only on projects that excite and inspire them.
But in doing so, they would need to charge higher fees. Not because they’re greedy or money hungry. But because the “right” author doesn’t come around often enough to keep them afloat. Therefore, they can’t raise their fees for fear that they might lose out on a paycheck.
Financially, this works out to authors benefit. And it makes total sense that you would want to save as much of your money as possible as well. We don’t hold that against authors either. We empathize with all sides.
It’s a challenging predicament all around. And Bobbin is here to solve it. For everyone.
But at least in terms of editing quality, you’re taking a huge gamble with your book when you take the cheaper route. You get what you pay for. But who knows? We’re not Nostradamus.
But we are in a completely different space from freelancers. Our approach to our editing services is original because we’re not a normal assisted self-publishing service:
Although, we believe everyone can and probably should write a book. Not everyone should use our service, specifically.
The reason why there are no “Buy Now!” buttons on our website, no PayPal, no credit card logos pressuring you to give all your money to us is because we’re determined to work with the authors whom we can help the most and for whom we can provide the utmost value. Our goal is to help authors by giving great content, direction, and strategies.
We’ve deliberately positioned ourselves to be highly selective and we typically reject about 20-30% of authors who want to work with us based on our review of their Author Q&A.
We won’t work with you unless we believe in your idea. We would never just take your money. We use the Author Q&A to make sure we’re a good fit, and we’ll never take your money unless we think you have a good book in you that will provide value to the reader.
Bobbin services are customary value pricing. We have a good idea of the editing process and fixed pricing is standard operating procedure for piecework and one-off projects in every other industry.
For instance, you might buy a cup of black coffee with creamer and whipped cream for $3. But, imagine instead paying the barista $0.20 per every minute it takes for them to serve you the coffee. And then on top of that add-on another $0.20 per every ounce of coffee in the cup. Can imagine having to calculate all that before you order, not knowing for sure what the final price will be every time you walk into your favorite coffee shop?
At best, it would be kinda weird right? At worst, it would a frustrating walk down the path of ridiculousness.
The reason our society has adopted our current purchasing system is because it simply makes much more sense to pay for the value of the coffee itself.
It’s easier. Its faster. It’s more efficient. For everyone.
Now, you’re probably going to say it’s a bit of a false equivalency. Coffee and manuscripts are two entirely different beasts. True.
But here’s the real deal, what no one will tell you: freelance editors will say that they charge by word or page but, behind the scenes, they’re really just charging per hour because scope of work isn’t easily estimated, even for them.
And editors are astutely aware that clients hate extra fees so they do their best to include those extra fees into your initial quote.
Not all manuscripts are created equal. That’s why editors request a sample of your writing before they start so that they can gauge how much of their time it’s going to take them to help you whip your manuscript into shape. Their calculations are then presented to you in a quote or project proposal.
Let’s say an editor receives two manuscript submission that have the exact same word count. One might be super polished and requires very little editing while the other is in terrible condition and requires the editor to work super hard.
The editor will account for those varied conditions and the two authors will get two entirely different quotes.
This process doesn’t make them liars. It makes them practical. It’s a noble and honest attempt for them to turn a messy system into something more palatable.
And we’ve found that authors are happiest with fixed prices because they know exactly how much it’s going to cost them. It helps with your budgeting and planning payments.
It’s easier for us too. Because it’s less clerical work and minimizes scope creep which puts more focus on efficiency, allowing us to devote more energy into helping your write the best possible book.
Our fee is based on the incredible value we deliver to our authors. And what you get is our full service and complete package regardless of how many words you write, how many pages we edit for you, or how many hours we spend working on your manuscript.
This saves you thousands of dollars because you get all of Bobbin’s extra special sauce (selection of your editor, coaching chats, email exchanges, support, guidance, etc.) without having to pay additional fees for any of the bonus hours you get.
Plus, you’ll always know the amount you’re paying, which saves you time from having to figure out future hourly fees added on to your package or calculating the amount of your manuscript’s words and pages against some arbitrary price. It also protects you from getting hit with any hidden and unexpected fees.
Here’s one real world example: Our standard turnaround time for a line-edit of a 400 page (100k words) manuscript is 5-6 weeks. But that’s just a deadline to ensure you get your feedback as quickly as possible. But in many cases, our professional editors will deliver much faster. Sometimes within 2-3 weeks. This saves you hundreds of dollars because we don’t charge you any rush delivery fees like other services. Plus, there are no minimum or maximum page limits for you to figure out how it factors in to your budget.
Our goal is to make every aspect of the publishing process simple and easy for you and we’ve found that a flat fee helps to do that.
You don’t have to do it all yourself! And you shouldn’t.
Self-publishing does not mean doing it all yourself. It means becoming your own publisher, and one of the roles of the publisher is to hire the editor, and the art director, and the artist, and all of those other people.
Find the experts who know what they are doing.
We believe strongly that writers need to think of themselves as small business owners.
That means doing something of a paradigm shift in your brain of realizing that you are not an expert in everything.
Thus, you need to find the expert.
But unlike other services, Bobbin goes the extra mile and does the busy work of finding and hiring the experts for you. And we work damn hard in vetting the best editors in the industry to help make sure you write the best book possible.
It is the business model of self-publishing, with the support of traditional publishing.
We always have a plan for your next steps so that you’re not lost in the weeds with where to go after you’ve completed one stage of the publishing process. You’ll be empowered to continue your publishing journey with a clear direction and a firm grasp on what your book has to offer the world.
That’s what you’re paying for.
The books we have done and the authors we have worked with are of the highest caliber, so clearly our service can be very professional. You’re hiring us for that exact reason—to ensure that your book is as professional as any on the market.
Does a higher price guarantee better quality? Not necessarily. Anyone who’s ever purchased a shoddy computer printer can attest to that.
But it’s your best shot. You’ve spent countless hours, weeks or months brainstorming, world-building, and drafting your manuscript. You’ve worked for months—or years—on your book, writing and revising without any help from others.
Is it a bad idea to put an equal amount of devotion into getting the best professional editing available to ensure that your book has the reach and impact it deserves. Does it make sense not too?
And let’s be real. We brag about how our editors have worked on #1 New York Times bestsellers and how many of them are award winners because it’s a fact. We display many of the books we’ve worked on because we’re proud of our contributions to the world.
Not because it guarantees anything.
Bobbin can’t be that good, you might say.
And you’d be correct. No publishing experience is perfect all of the time.
Positive reviews, 5-star ratings, testimonials, case studies, can all be helpful gauges when you’re buying stuff. But they also have very little correlation to any outcome.
Because past success isn’t a prediction of any future result. It’s merely a good start.
So, here’s the ultimate point:
We know it’s hard to trust the book process to someone else—even experienced professionals. It feels risky. It’s your reputation on the line, after all.
We take that very seriously, which is why we make the following promises:
We love to read, we love to write, and we are waiting to help you make your dream of becoming an author a reality.
Whether or not you bring us onboard your publishing journey is totally up to you.
We just wish you, your book and your publishing journey the very best!
Of course! We understand the partnership between writer and editor. The personality is just as important as the actual work! Just click here to download a sample edit. And this will give you a taste of what your editor can offer you.
One (1) round/pass-through. The base fee for Bobbin Manuscript Assessment (both Evaluation and Edit) does not include a second round read/analysis. Reading and analysis of a revision of a full manuscript will be treated (and billed) as a new project. It takes as long to read and evaluate a rewrite as it did the first time through.
It depends on the number of pages you’ve submitted:
We aim to return all feedback in 5-6 weeks.
If your book coach needs more time, based on backlog, they will discuss a reasonable timeline.
Our Manuscript Assessments are priced by tier at $10/page and begins with a 100 page minimum. It breaks down like this:
For our Manuscript Evaluation Service – You’ll receive a developmental edit. Your book coach will use our Bobbin 15-point checklist to evaluate your manuscript and offer suggestions. They’ll look for things like narrative drive, tone and voice, dialogue, mechanics, and the “why” behind your characters’ motivations or the point of your book. You will receive a 2- to 3-page summary of their biggest findings and suggestions for how to move forward and strengthen your manuscript.
For our Manuscript Editing Service – You’ll receive a line-edit. Your editor will use our Bobbin 10-point checklist to evaluate your manuscript and offer suggestions. They’ll look for things like narrative drive, tone and voice, dialogue, mechanics, and the “why” behind your characters’ motivations or the point of your book. You will receive in-line comments on specific sections of your book, as well as a comprehensive summary of its strengths and weaknesses. Your coach will also include suggestions for how to move forward and strengthen your manuscript. You’ll have the chance to talk with your coach by phone after you receive their feedback to ask them any questions.
For our Manuscript Evaluation Service – Unfortunately, a manuscript evaluation doesn’t include time to talk with your book coach about their feedback – that’s by design so that we can keep the cost low. We do have an option to purchase a coach’s time to talk on the phone for a small fee. If you’re interested, please contact us at [email protected] If you’re interested in more back and forth with your coach, check out our Bobbin Author Accelerator program or Manuscript Edit. The coaching allows for ongoing email communication with your book coach, and the edit includes a phone call with your book coach after you receive their feedback.
For our Manuscript Editing Service – Yes! You can ask your book coach any questions you have about their feedback after you review it. The manuscript edit comes with one follow-up email exchange (one email from you with your questions, and one response from your coach with their answers) OR a phone call (approximately 1 hour). You can let us know which method you’d like to use. If you’d like ongoing email communication with your book coach, we recommend our Bobbin Author Accelerator program.
A dedicated, highly trained professional book coach hand-picked for our team by Michael Martin. All of our coaches have been trained on the editorial feedback system that Michael developed, and hired for their ability to edit for mechanics, content, and flow, as well as their compassion toward writers. Our goal is to have the same coach work with you week by week and month by month. With vacations and unforeseeable situations, that could change, of course, but we work hard to avoid that. See our editors!
Every professional editor works on the assumption that the writer owns the execution of their ideas. To do otherwise would be reckless and unconscionable. Copyright does not protect an idea, though; it protects the execution of that idea. A thousand writers could be writing about Abraham Lincoln or the zombie apocalypse or a haunted bullet train, but each of their stories would be different. So you can never really say that someone stole an idea, or used your idea. You can, of course, argue if someone literally steals your executed pages — and published writers report this as a problem with pirated material — but that is a very different thing than protecting an idea. No member of the Bobbin staff will ever use the execution of another writer’s idea in any capacity without consent.
We expect most writers to use all of their initial 12 deadlines within 6 months. This equates to an every-other-week submission schedule, which we encourage because it keeps the momentum going and keeps both the writer and coach familiar with the story and the elements you two are working on. It’s the pace at which we’ve seen writers make the best progress.
If you are considering a different submission schedule, please let us know during your consultation call so that we can help you design a schedule that will allow you to get the most out of the program.
Our Manuscript Accelerator program has a 20-page cap on submissions. This could mean up to 20 new pages, 10 new pages and 10 revised pages, or a similar combination. However, you are not expected to submit a full 20 pages each deadline – that’s considered A LOT! Pages do not roll over deadline to deadline, and you are not credited any pages you “do not use.”
PLEASE NOTE: In our Elite Accelerator program, the page limit per deadline is 25, and there is the option for more flexibility. You and your coach can create a writing schedule that works best for both of you.
You may, but note that Manuscript Accelerator does not come with extensive communication between deadlines, so your coach will use their discretion in how they answer. They may be able to send a succinct reply, or they may feel it would be more effective to save your questions for your next round of feedback or editorial call.
PLEASE NOTE: In our Elite Accelerator program, your coach has more time to discuss problems or questions between deadlines, in addition to the added phone calls (twice as many as in Manuscript Accelerator). If you think you’ll need more consistent support as you write forward, we encourage you to check out that program.
When and how you get on the phone with your coach is up to you – you can schedule them at any time throughout your program, and use a video-conferencing platform instead of the phone, if you’d like. You can also combine calls into one longer call to sort through a thorny issue or dive into brainstorming. Your coach will keep track of the calls you’ve used, and let you know what you have remaining. You’ll also have the option of adding phone calls to your program if you find them super helpful. If you’d rather not get on the phone with your coach, your coach will use that extra time to provide feedback on your pages.
In the Elite Accelerator program, you get a higher level of interaction with your coach than in the standard MA program, and they will do their best to respond to all your questions. They may send extra articles or assignments for you to do, or extra encouragement. If your requests become excessive, they may ask you to gather questions into a single email, or save certain inquiries for your next phone call. As long as you keep the lines of communication open on both sides, you’ll be just fine!
You will have the ability to send in 1-page extra assignments between deadlines, such as an updated table of contents, character sketches, problem-solving worksheets, world-building elements, agent acceptances or rejections, and Twitter contest pitch plans.
You might say that now, but we’ve found that there’s always something more to do! If you finish your rough draft, you and your coach can move on to revising. If you finish your final draft, you and your coach can move on to a polish edit and/or preparing your pitch plan. If you’re planning to self-publish, your coach can help with market research and platform building.
The best part is that you have a full year to use all your deadlines, so if you need to step away from the work for a bit to focus on marketing, do research, or clear your head, you’ll have plenty of time to come back to it.
Your program begins the day you register and pay for your package – whether that’s your first monthly installment or the full cost upfront. Your deadlines will be active and available to use until 1 year beyond that date. For example, if you were to sign up on Jan. 1, your deadlines would be active until Dec. 31. If you were to sign up on Jan. 20, your deadlines would be active until Jan. 19 of the following year.
You are in full control of your deadline schedule, so you can account for any breaks, vacations, or emergencies you might have. However, we’ve found that most writers who take a lengthy break from their program tend to justify not completing it for one reason or another. We don’t want you to fall into that trap. So while you may take the time you need to between deadlines, we encourage you to stick to a consistent schedule as much as possible. Note that our coaches sometimes need scheduled time off too, and they will let you know when those times are coming up so you can plan accordingly and keep going strong. Deadlines expire a year after purchase.
No. Deadlines expire one year after purchase date. Any unused deadlines cannot be recouped or applied to another program or service. But don’t worry – your coach will help you stay on track and hold you accountable to using all your deadlines!
Deadlines expire one year after the package purchase date. Any unused deadlines cannot be recouped or applied to another program or service. But don’t worry – your coach will help you stay on track and hold you accountable to using all your deadlines!
Through extensive work with many different writers, Michael Martin discovered that 12 deadlines, on average, provide a suitable time frame for a writer to develop a solid rough draft through coaching. It’s a sizable amount of feedback to commit to, but it equates to a lot less time than spending years on a book that doesn’t get finished.
We offer a basic book coaching program through Bobbin Connected.
There are a few key differences between each Accelerator package such as amount of coaching sessions per month you get, as well as length of those coaching sessions.
Manuscript Accelerator – For writers with a rough draft or a completed first draft
Premium Accelerator – For writers who want extra guidance – includes all the benefits of Manuscript Accelerator along with the following extras:
Elite Accelerator – includes everything in Premium + we publish your book (including book cover design and full distribution):
You have the option of purchasing extra pages for each deadline. You can do this on an as-needed basis.
If you want to submit fewer pages than the page limit for any given deadline, that’s just fine! Remember, you are not paying for a certain number of pages – you are paying for access to your coach, regardless of how many pages you turn in for each deadline (since every writer is different). Any pages up to the limit that you “do not use” cannot be carried over into the next deadline. It’s a “use it or lose it” thing. For each deadline, the page count is reset. So if you’re able to submit only 10 pages for one deadline, that’s fine – it’s good progress! But you do not then get to submit 30 pages for the next deadline; the limit is still 20 pages (25 in our Premium program).
Options, options, options!
Option 1: You can choose to revise your draft in the same way you wrote it with us – with regular editorial feedback. You can choose to stay with the same book coach, or work with someone new for a fresh perspective on your book. If you decide you’d rather not continue with accountability and feedback and want to go your own way to revise, that’s fine too, of course. We would understand, and the pain would subside eventually.
Option 2: We offer a full-manuscript edit or evaluation, where one of our award-winning editors reviews your rough draft front to back and makes structural and developmental suggestions and edits. This can be done before or after you go through the revision process (or both!) For more information, click here.
Never fear – life happens! If you ever think you’ll be late submitting your work, you may reschedule your deadline with your coach. If you think you just need a few hours to get it done, ask them if they can accommodate you submitting it up to a day late. Any later than that, though, and we enter no man’s land where submissions are lost and coaches start going crazy. So if that’s the case, go through your coach’s formal rescheduling process.
Also, realize that accountability is a big part of the value of the program. If you miss a deadline, you can expect an email from your coach asking for your pages. With Accelerator, you have to hit your deadlines (just like working with a publisher).
And always remember that the 72-hour window for receiving feedback starts when you hit the “send” button.
Unless otherwise stated on the specific product sales page and order form all of our products, programs and services come with an action based 30-day money back guarantee.
To read more about our refund policies, click here.
At checkout you’ll be presented with a few payment options:
Payment Plan Solutions
We understand that not all authors have the money up front to get started with the publishing process and Bobbin offers payment plan options as a service to get our authors into print. We work as you pay and will continue with you throughout your journey. Bobbin offers two payment plan options:
Non-Payment Plan Solutions
Additionally, we accept all the typical payment solutions:
You book is yours.
You always have full ownership, retain all copyrights and maintain anonymity. We will obtain a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) where applicable.
You own 100% of the royalties for your book.
Although Bobbin Media doesn’t take any share of the book’s profits, there are some costs that don’t go directly in your pocket—namely, Amazon’s fees and printing costs.
For eBooks, Amazon takes 30% of your royalties and you take the other 70%. For paperbacks, Amazon takes 40% of royalties, the printer gets approximately $3 to print the book, and the rest is yours. If you do hardcover, we’ll explain it all before you make any decisions.
No, it actually does the opposite.
When a traditional publisher takes royalties, their goals become focused completely on maximizing book sales, because that is their only source of revenue.
But that isn’t always what best serves the author. For many authors, the goals of spreading their message, giving away free books, getting speaking gigs, or finding clients are more important than the revenue from book sales. So focusing on book sales actually hurts the success of the book.
With this in mind, the best strategy to create a great book—both for you and for us—is to use a service-based model, where our goal is only to create the best possible book to accomplish your goals.
Klarna is our primary payment gateway for Bobbin Author Academy. Simply enter your payment information at checkout as normal. Klarna accepts credit cards, PayPal, and direct bank transfer.
Note: Bobbin Elite services are not handled through Klarna. First, we will send you an invoice. Then we accept payments via credit card, bank transfer and PayPal. We will arrange special payment plan options with you directly.
For Bobbin Author Academy services, no. All payment arrangements are handle through Klarna.
For Bobbin Elite services, we will take care to make special arrangements directly with you that match your finances.
No, not right now.
We do both fiction and nonfiction.
There’s just one exception. All but one of our services are designed to accommodate both fiction and nonfiction authors.
The Bobbin Professional Program is our only program that does not support fiction.
This is due to the nature the program’s interview based process. Interviewing an author for nonfiction is straight forward. The author simply talks about what they know: their life; their business; or their skill-set. And Bobbin takes those spoken words and transcribes it into a manuscript.
We’ve found that this process doesn’t work with fiction because, naturally, the author is still discovering the world and of the story and its characters as it’s being written. Therefore, an interview can’t reasonably take place in this scenario.
That said, the best alternatives for fiction that Bobbin provides are: