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Get Known Before the Book Deal: Use Your Personal Strengths to Grow an Author Platform

3.91  ·  Rating Details  ·  232 Ratings  ·  51 Reviews
Sell Your First Book & Develop a Successful and Sustainable Writing Career Before you can land a book deal--before you can even attract the interest of agents and editors--you need to be visible. How do you become visible? You develop a platform, or a way of reaching your readers. Everybody can develop a platform, and this book shows you how to do it while you're still ...more
ebook, 272 pages
Published October 1st 2008 by Writers Digest Books (first published January 1st 2008)
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Jan 12, 2010 Andy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: writing
Christina Katz has packed A LOT into this book. Any aspiring author, almost author, or new author will benefit from her insights on how to create and grow a writing platform.

I was especially impressed with part one, in which she discusses how to discover your platform and what your first steps should be to make it unique and natural to you. Every writer should read at least this section if they're serious about having a career in publishing.

I was also amazed at the range of topics she covers: e
Mindi Rosser
Mar 01, 2011 Mindi Rosser rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Writers, Authors
Recommended to Mindi by: The Writer Magazine
Are you seeking to grow your fiction or non-fiction platform as an aspiring author. From the first to last page of this book, Christina shepherds the newbie through the maze of social media, networking, blogging, and self-promotion. Whether you are a shy introvert or a raucous extrovert, you will find methods to employ your strategy for writing promotion. Struggling to find your niche? This is THE book for you!

The book is divided into three parts: Platform Ready, Platform Set, and Platform Grow.
T.L. Cooper
Get Known Before the Book Deal by Christina Katz focuses on building a platform to create a foundation for a successful writing career. Katz addresses reaching and building an audience not writing technique. She is quick to point out Get Known Before the Book Deal assumes the writer already knows how to write well and works on improving craft. Get Known Before the Book Deal is geared toward the beginning writer but more seasoned authors can also find helpful information. While primarily written ...more
April Hamilton
Jan 21, 2010 April Hamilton rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a terrific book for any author or aspiring author, whether you're just getting started with platform or consider yourself fairly knowledgeable on the topic. I'm an author with four books in print who is active with social media, I have two blogs and four websites, and there were still some new ideas and tips for me in this very accessible book.

Author Christina Katz demystifies author platform. She not only defines the term, but goes on to separate the hype from the realities in clear, pl
Apr 02, 2013 Alice rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book for anyone starting a new creative venture. Katz writes specifically for nonfiction writers, but her advice easily transfers to other creative fields. I found this book serendipitously, and did not have high expectations for it initially, but this is one of the best DIY marketing books I have read. I made copious notes as I read, highlighted many passages, and will go back and read this one again -- probably many times.
Aug 11, 2012 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, writing
I heard Christina speak at a writing conference and liked her overall approach and attitude. This book is a thoughtful and thorough study of what a writer's "platform" is and how to have one, even before you've sold your first book. I picked up several tips that I will start using to ramp up my platform presence and identity while I'm still toiling away at learning craft.
Nov 17, 2012 Saritza rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I have made this book required reading for all of my clients and recommend to any author trying to expand their reach and market. Difficult to grow as an author if your platform is muddy. This book will not only help you establish your platform, it will provide you with the tools you need to build the buzz around your book even before it hits the shelves! MUST BUY!
Apr 19, 2016 Alexandria rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: authors and aspiring authors
This book is packed with information and exercises that will help you build your platform. I actually found the information so useful that I went out and bought a copy on Amazon. Ever chapter left me wanting to put notes in the margins and I had initially picked this book up as a library book. You simply can't do that as a library book!

I would love to see an updated edition that covers newer social media like Twitter or Instagram, so if anyone has seen one please let me know!

Get Known Before the
Ross Lampert
You’re a member of “writer mama” Christina Katz’s target audience if you’re (1) a female (2) non-fiction writer who’s (3) looking to traditionally publish (4) in around 2010 and (5) have plenty of time on your hands. The fewer of those categories you fall into, however, the less this book is for you. So for me as a male, indie-published, fiction author with precious little spare time in the middle of 2015, this book had limited value.

That’s not to say Get Known is a bad book. It’s not.

Katz, who
Lynne Spreen
Dec 25, 2010 Lynne Spreen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a pre-debut writer of women’s fiction, I’ve spent a lot of time surfing around the web trying to learn everything I can about writing and platforming. I have two blogs, I interact with numerous social netting sites, and I participate in several writing associations. Not only do I think I might just be spinning my wheels, but it’s becoming increasingly hard to find time to actually write. It would be an understatement to say that I am overwhelmed.

Luckily, I found out about Christina Katz and h
Ashlee Willis
Jul 12, 2013 Ashlee Willis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Any writer who is starting out - or even any writer who has been published already - can use the amazing tips Christina Katz has in this book. I took copious notes the whole time! She goes into detail on a number of different aspects of beginning your writer platform - something, in this day and age, every writer hoping to become an author needs to have. And not only "after the book deal" - but BEFORE. Editors and agents are much more likely to take your determination as a writer seriously if th ...more
Chris Blocker
These non-fiction how-to books have become difficult for me to read, rate, and review. It shouldn’t be Get Known Before the Book Deal’s fault as it is merely “the straw that broke the camel’s back.” Many predecessors received more fair treatment than I want to give this book, so that being said I’m going easy on this one and speaking more on “How to” books in general.

The biggest issue with nearly all these sort of dastardly books is that they harp on one thing over and over and over and over and
Kelly Lynn Thomas
Not a bad book, but a bit out of date (no mention of social media at all). The foundational concepts of the book are still good--figure out the ground you want to stand on, articulate it, and then start promoting yourself. This is definitely geared more toward nonfiction writers, so fiction writers (like myself) might be left a little frustrated at the end, especially if you don't really want to write ABOUT fiction to establish your expertise as a writer OF fiction.
Michelle Connell
Apr 13, 2015 Michelle Connell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overwhelming with the amount of work suggested in this book for authors-to-be, but lots of ideas to choose from, depending on your personality, time available and size of your family. Most of these won't work for me until I can work/write full-time. I currently homeschool 3 of my 4 children, so I can't devote as much time to these ideas as are suggested. But for the person who can work/promote full-time, this is an awesome book.
Colleen Story
Lots of good, practical information here. Slanted mostly toward the non-fiction writer, but as a fiction writer, I still gleaned a lot from it. Quick read. Christina has a nice, friendly voice. Great advice to get going on marketing before the book comes out.
Tony Bradshaw
Mar 26, 2014 Tony Bradshaw rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was suggested by another book, and it then recommends many others. I read it because on the back panel it defined what I am working to improve this year:

Platform encompasses all the ways you are visible and appealing to your future, potential, or actual readership."

Though I'm not the target audience, I got a lot from this book. I created a list of things I can do that Katz suggests.

In all, I've checked one thing off my todo list, and added 7 more while adding a
Jul 10, 2016 Jeanne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Had much good advice but was mis-titled. It should have made clear that it was specifically written for nonfiction writers. A great disappointment to this novelist with a work-in-progress.
Aug 05, 2011 Christa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Once again, Christina Katz delivers with a book jam-packed with valuable information. It's a book that won't be gathering dust on my bookshelf as I frequently refer to it when I have a question (much like her book "Writer Mama"). I took her class Discover Your Platform, Launch Your Specialty that goes along with this book and found both extremely helpful and insightful as I start specializing in my writing career. She's a terrific coach and someone I've grown to trust when it comes to offering a ...more
Jean Oram
I couldn't decide whether to give this book a 3 or a 4. Some of the tips and ideas were great and really helped me out. And others didn't go deep enough to tell me anything new. For a newbie who is just thinking about building a platform, starting a website, etc., this will be a very good guide to get one started. Basically, it is a multi-chaptered book with lots of topics covered within a few pages. It would be tough to fit everything one needs to know in here--especially with publishing changi ...more
Shavawn Berry
May 12, 2015 Shavawn Berry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very helpful & thorough resource on building an author platform and branding yourself as a writer.
Tom Franklin
Writing your book isn't enough. Writing your query and sending it off to agents isn't enough. No, you need to have a built-in audience who publishers think will be willing to buy your book without the benefit of any publicity the publisher might be willing to send your way.

The author has her platform (and tells us about it, thus promoting her platform through her book) and she encourages her readership to create and develop their own. She gives concrete suggestions in a writing style that was j
Claudette Alexander
Before reading this book, I was green and clueless about building a platform. The book provided me with valuable information that I felt empowered to build a website.
The book offers a step-by-step approach to creating, growing and nurturing a platform in a clear and understanding manner.
With Christina's guidance you are able to dig deep inside yourself and realize personal strengths/skills you had forgotten or was not aware that you possess.
Buying this book was a good investment in myself.
Jun 29, 2010 Carrie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an excellent, excellent source for us aspiring writers! Christina Katz has filled her book with practical and very helpful information on platform-building. I felt excited, encouraged, and energized as I read it and am anxious to continue working through all the steps that she has given. This is a resource that will stay within reach as I work on my writing.
Mar 08, 2012 Kara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Perhaps when I build my freelance writing career a little more, this book will be more applicable to me, and the rating will be revised to a "5" to match the others (Writer Mama, and The Writer's Workout). Christina Katz is an incredibly talented writer and gentle teacher, who honestly seems to have the aspiring writer's best interests in mind.
Christian McKay
Apr 17, 2009 Christian McKay rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: regrettables
I wasn't going to admit that I'd read this book until I saw that the average rating was a 4.62.

How in the hell did this useless piece of repetitive, say-nothing how-to get published? Everything you need to know in this book is written on the back cover. The pages between are marshmallow fluff. Ahem, excuse me, STALE marshmallow fluff.
Aug 10, 2013 Sue rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As always Christina seems to know what writers need to take their writing careers to the next level. A valuable resource for writers at many levels. It will be the gentle nudge for those who are ready but uncertain and a wealth of knowledge that can be percolating in the background for those of us just beginning.
Christina Hibbert
May 11, 2012 Christina Hibbert rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book--helped me, a mom of 6, psychologist, and first-time author, navigate the world of building and executing the "platform" I didn't even realize I already had! Prepared me for meeting with agents and publishers, walking me through each step along the way. Just the friend I needed to get me started.
Tannara Young
Nov 03, 2012 Tannara Young rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As I mentioned over at my blog, this is a great book for anyone working on developing their visibility as an author or even an artist or teacher. While it is geared more toward non-fiction, I still found it full of useful exercises and ideas. You can see my longer review at
May 19, 2012 Kim is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Just started it, but bought it before I realized it was published in 2008. So much has changed in the social media space for writers in the last 4 years that this seems a bit outdated at this point.
Good advice so far, but needs an update to include more on online tools and promotion opportunities.
Dec 28, 2011 Laurel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: writing
I love Christina Katz -- she's a writer who shares everything she's learned and makes it accessible to the reader ... especially one who's thinking, "Platform? What platform?" Reading Katz is like having a conversation with a friend in the business who's delighted to teach you all she knows.
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Christina Katz is the author of three books from Writer’s Digest: The Writer’s Workout, Get Known Before the Book Deal, and Writer Mama. Her writing career tips and parenting advice appear regularly in national, regional, and online publications. A “gentle taskmaster” over the past decade to hundreds of writers, Christina’s students go from unpublished to published, build professional writing care ...more
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