Write articles to promote your nonfiction book

If you’ve researched your book – and most fiction writers research their novels and short stories – you almost certainly read magazine, newspaper or journal articles on interesting topics only tangentially related to your title and that merited maybe only a sentence or two in your manuscript. These topics can be the kernel of articles that you later write to promote your book.

Suppose, for example, that I authored a book about mountain biking in northern California. As writing route descriptions, I might have noted what flora and fauna can be seen along the trails. No doubt one of the trails included some rare or endangered birds. I might have needed to quick read an article about those birds so that I could write a fact or two about what they looked like or how to best spot them. I wouldn’t include every single detail about their appearance and probably nothing about their mating cycles. Once I’ve completed my manuscript, however, I might have found that there are several northern California mountain biking trails with rare or endangered birds on them. Writing and publishing an article about “Best Northern California Bike Trails to Spot Rare Birds” would be a great way to promote my book. In that article, I likely would include material I read during my research but didn’t include in the book.

The challenge when writing these articles is to find publications that might run them. As this part of the process will take time, be sure to start it a few months before your book comes out. Newspapers, magazines and guest posts during a blog tour all are locations where you might place your articles.

At the end of each of these articles, always include a short one- or two-sentence that notes you are the author of such-and-such book. Include a link where the reader can purchase the book.

In addition to writing articles based on your research, you also can publish or post bits and pieces of your manuscript. One great option is to summarize the book’s major points or to hyperfocus by focusing on a lone chapter. This requires a little bit of editing and writing (usually transitions), but most of the text already is written for you. Another approach, using even less work is to simply serialize the manuscript. Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” was serialized in The New Yorker, helping shoot her science book to the top of the bestseller list.


My name is Rob Bignell. I’m an affordable, professional editor who runs Inventing Reality Editing Service, which meets the manuscript needs of writers both new and published. I also offer a variety of self-publishing services. During the past decade, I’ve helped more than 300 novelists and nonfiction authors obtain their publishing dreams at reasonable prices. I’m also the author of the 7 Minutes a Day… writing guidebooks, four nonfiction hiking guidebook series, and the literary novel Windmill. Several of my short stories in the literary and science fiction genres also have been published.