I receive this question quite a lot on a daily basis. There are lots of different ways to get published, but I would suggest getting started with self-publishing. I think this is an excellent way to get to know the industry and understand just how much hard work goes into writing and publishing a book. There are many ways to source information, i.e Reddit.com (reddit.com/r/selfpublish) and google.com – you need to also be able to ask yourself the right questions. I find you will only truly understand this if you do the work yourself. I started with self-publishing, so there is no reason that you can’t!

I would recommend starting your own Instagram account to share your poetry and try to build up an audience. This will prove there are people resonating with your writing and supporting your book/poetry. If your goal is to sell a book, then you need to be able to prove you have a market and also interest in your work.

I worked with a professional designer and gave him some guidance on what I wanted. People DO judge a book by its cover, so I recommend spending money on a good cover, at least $600 USD+ in my opinion. You don’t HAVE to do this of course, however, if you aren’t willing to invest in quality, then why should readers invest their money in your work? In my experience, you get exactly what you pay for. I have had many other poets write to me, complaining that they cannot sell their books, even with large follower bases. Most often, it falls back on a book cover. If you create a cover that is going to sell in the first place, then you are less likely to have this problem.

I released Pillow Thoughts in August 2016 and they contacted me a few months later, requesting the rights to republish the book under their publishing company. I attribute this to how well the book was already selling on Amazon. I did not submit a book proposal to them, so I am not the person to ask regarding how to create one. However, there are many tools available to understand how to write a book proposal – namely on google.

I don’t believe it matters either way. However, having an agent enables me to focus on my writing and have my agent juggle all the business affairs. This being said, I have someone I trust a great deal and is easy and great to work with. I would recommend doing your research on literary agents and finding one that holds your best interests. Currently, my business partner and I have been assisting other poets/writers with their manuscripts. We have a Literary Agency called Pepperbooks where you can write to James for further inquiries on james@pepperbooks.org


I am not a publisher and I don’t have any control over AMU :) I am simply one of their authors. I do not have any part in their creative decisions and I do not send or suggest manuscripts for them to publish. If you are interested in submitting a book proposal to AMU, then I suggest going to their website andrewsmcmeelspublishing.com

I am the type of person that doesn’t stop working – for this reason, it’s incredibly difficult to dedicate time to anything other than works associated with my own projects. While I would love to invest time into everyone, I simply can’t. This doesn’t mean, however, that I am not hoping the best for you and your writing journey!

You are more than welcome to send your manuscript to our Literary Agency via james@pepperbooks.org - please keep in mind that I personally do not read manuscripts nor am I able to offer any editorial advice (I am not a professional editor!) however my team will be in touch if your manuscript is something they are interested in. 

I live in Sydney, Australia!

I post a lot about my little fur family and get messages about them all the time – personally I think it’s very sweet and I love that people have taken an interest in them. Both of them are very spoilt!  

Rhian is my fiance :)

We only do signed copies in certain situations, and because we’re in Australia it will cost at least $50USD. If you want a signed copy, then you can send an email to James via james@pepperbooks.org and CC me into the email on courtney@pepperbooks.org

I am adamant that I reply to all my emails, as I love hearing from you and it’s very important to me that I reply to you when you have reached out. You can reach me on courtney@pepperbooks.org – while it may take me a week to respond, it is directly from me :)

Absolutely. Right now, I am still building my career however I LOVED being able to meet some of my readers whilst touring the US. It’s important when planning a tour, that I will get a return on what I have invested as I do live a long way away from where most of my readers live. I hope to do many book tours in the future 

When I was younger, I too had the same belief. Now, with all my experience in the publishing world, I can assure you that for someone to steal your work, whether you believe an agent to do this etc is very difficult. Copyright laws differ in certain countries, and I would suggest doing some research into the laws that are applicable to you and your situation. This being said, for someone to steal an entire manuscript, publish it as their own, market it, organize book covers, editors and formatting etc it’s highly unlikely this will happen.

You can write to me at courtney@pepperbooks.org