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About Lincoln Square Books

Welcome to the Lincoln Square Books Publishing Experience

As an editor for Walker and Company in New York many years ago, Lincoln Square publisher Peter Rubie used to court literary agents large and small by saying:

 

"The book that you love that everyone's turning down, bring to me, and I'll fix it and publish it."

It was a variation of that same philosophy that prompted him to start Lincoln Square Books. "That book you love that no-one will publish -- bring it to me, and I'll do my best to publish it as well as I can."

Why choose Lincoln Square Books?

Frustration: The industry has changed and the choices you may now confront seem to focus on everything BUT the merits of the book you've written.

 

Frustration is a familiar emotion for many of us in publishing. Rejections that praise a book but end with variations on, "we just don't see how we could publish this well here;" or, "I loved this, but my colleagues were not convinced." 

The truth is that publishers rarely say they're rejecting your book because they don't think it will make them any money, even if they admire it. Yet that’s what they’re thinking. 

We’re different. Lincoln Square Books wants to publish your book on its own merits. But we need your help to do it.

We're proud of that fact that we curate the books on our list. Our passion for your book has to match yours or it won't work.

Few authors consider that traditional publishers make a negative investment (in terms of the cost of production and royalty advances) every time they agree to publish a book. Publishing a book is a roulette wheel spin made harder shrinking bookstore shelf space and a migration of book sales to the web.  

But you can make lemonade from lemons. There is another way to view things. Modern publishing technology has shrunk the cost of producing a high quality book. Authors have become a lot more entrepreneurial in their thinking and their skills. 

By rethinking the two driving needs of a publishing house -- 

1. How engaging is the book you want to publish; 

2. How engaged will the author be in the marketing, and promotion of the book,

 

it dawned on Lincoln Square publisher Peter Rubie that it was possible to publish worthy books that mainstream publishers reject by giving authors a stake in their books and access to a team of experienced experts.

How so?

 

After any editor (and we are no different in this respect) reads and falls in love with your book, the first two questions are always: How do we hold down the cost of publishing this book; and, Who is going to buy it?

These days mainstream publishers advance pretty modest royalties to authors in the hopes that the book will at least break even soon, and over time make a profit. But for the most part they also focus on the books they are obviously likely to sell, and essentially leave the rest of their books to perform as they will, with virtually little or no help or advice for the author. 

At Lincoln Square we decided the equivalent of a traditional publishing royalty advance would be an agreement with the author for Lincoln Square to either take a reduced share of royalties or no share of royalties until any costs invested by the author in book production have earned out. It is our demonstration of our belief in the worth of the author and their work.  

Some factors we consider:

  • Can Lincoln Square hold down the initial cost of producing a quality book?

  • Can the author mount a serious and continued effort to build readership?

  • Do we think that, over time (say, two years), the book will likely earn back all the original production cost and start making money? 

If the the answer is yes to these questions, then Lincoln Square is ready to discuss creating a partnership with an author.