View Full Version : Media Platform & Agent?

12-06-2011, 07:13 PM
I have written 2 original cookbook manuscripts that are 300 pages each. Upon receiving very positive feedback from publishers, the main criticism has been that I am lacking a media platform.

It is my understanding that I need to demonstrate a proven following through an outlet such as television or social media, but I am encountering a dilemma. Creating a food blog would mean frequently posting recipes. I have spent years developing and perfecting these recipes and would prefer to keep them for the book rather than give them away free online.

I have become more active on Twitter, but I am not sure it will raise my platform enough.

Local television stations and magazines have all mentioned that they require a media platform as well (Catch-22!)

Also, my location is in Canada where there are very few literary agents, who also require a strong platform before submission.

Self-publishing is not an option at this time.

Do you have any suggestions as to how I could build my media platform?

Thank you

12-06-2011, 07:39 PM
Besides Twitter, I would suggest a Facebook page and blog. The blog can be linked to both your FB page and Twitter.

You could start a cooking blog *without* posting recipes. Instead, you could share tips. For example, what's the difference between types of olive oil and how should the different types be used? Why should a person use smaller quantities of dried herbs, and larger quantities of fresh herbs? And so on...

Perhaps even a Youtube channel where you discuss cooking in short, 2-5 minute segments, maybe posted on a weekly basis.

Other, more experienced folks here will have better suggestions than me, but those are just some very basic ones. Also, what works well for some, might not work as well for others.

12-07-2011, 02:56 AM
I rep an author for a cooking type project (sorry to be vague). it's a sort of hybrid between tips/recipes and a memoir.

1) There's no reason to limit yourself to Canadian agents. I rep authors from all over the world, as do other agents.

2) Cookbooks are incredibly hard to break out (so much competition) and a platform is a must. We're talking 100,000 hits a month to your blog. It's okay to use recipes you will also use in your book (not all of them, but a percentage-- use common sense here, but as long as the book is a majority unpublished recipes, you're fine.). You really MUST demonstrate a readership which a publisher believes will purchase the book. You demosntrate value by offering original recipes and growing said audience, who will have an appetite for more, no pun in intended.

In other words, you're worried about the book, but from where I stand, until there's a platform, there is no book. You're going to have to share some recipes and build a following before you even worry about that book. Perhaps you should consider that your end goal is getting ONE of those two books published, and the other can be blog fodder as you establish your following.