In my series to help you win a publishing deal, here is

Tip #8: Fit a genre and send your book to the right publisher.

Every publisher specialises in certain genres. Cookbooks, self-help, business, religion, psychology, philosophy, chick lit, literary fiction, crime — it’s a never-ending list of categories.

This impacts your book in two ways.

If you fall outside a clear genre — a business book with recipes perhaps — publishers may balk.

You might get away with this if you are an established author. If you are pitching your first book, think before you mix genres. It’s a hurdle for publishers.

Then make sure you pitch to a publisher that specialises in your genre. Don’t send your business book to a religious publisher, for example.

Here’s my super simple tip for finding the right publishers to pitch to.

Pop down to your best local bookshop. Go to the shelf your readers go to and pull down the books your reader would choose. Now, look at the publisher of those books. There is your target.

Pick your genre, pick your publisher. Boost your chances of winning a deal.

Stick to it.