Posted By Karen on January 22, 2011
Self-publish Your Books - Image courtesy of MorgueFile
With today’s oversaturated and tight publishing market, it’s difficult to find even a small publisher for the manuscript you’ve slaved over. Many authors have taken the matter into their own hands and are going the self-publishing route. But, have vision! This can be a worthwhile venture…if you first know a couple of things:
1. Self-publishing will usually cost you money
If you choose a company that will print the book for you, such as print-on-demand, subsidy, or co-publishing companies, this will be an absolute. How much money will depend on the company you choose and which of the various services they offer that you buy into. And, there will be many aside from printing your book: editing, cover design, copyright, distribution, press releases, promotion, and so on. Each of these additional services will cost you more money, although most of these companies do offer package deals. I know writers who have spent under a thousand dollars and others who have spent over five thousand dollars to publish their book.
While digital mediums, such as Smashwords, Lulu, and Amazon’s Kindle can cost next to nothing to publish, you need to know or learn marketing and work at it endlessly to sell through these avenues.
Selling books in general is a TOUGH business, but it’s tougher if you don’t have the support of a traditional publishing company behind you.
So, be sure to hone your marketing skills.
2. Join a critique group before actually publishing
You’ve decided you want your book published no matter what. Well, that’ fine, but before you start think about which company to use to self-publish, JOIN A CRITIQUE GROUP; it is essential. I do reviews, editing, and critiques, which requires reading a number of self-published books and manuscripts. What is evident in these stories is that many authors are unaware they need to have an edited, polished manuscript before they think of going the self-publishing path.
When choosing a critique group, be sure there are new and experienced (preferably published) writers as members, and it needs to focus on the genre you write in. In a critique group, you’ll quickly begin to see, through critiques of your work and that of the other members, how writing should be done. You’ll begin to spot grammatical and punctuation and storyline errors – you will begin to hone your craft. The group will help you polish your manuscript and you’ll be amazed at the difference.
3. Self-Publishing Tools You’ll Need to Use
The above is just the tip of the self-publishing iceberg. Along with a critique group, you should belong to a couple of writing groups, work toward honing your craft (this includes reading books in the genre you write), and take advantage of writing blogs and writing conferences. All this will help you create a better quality book . . . one that you’ll be proud of.
And, it’s always advisable to have your manuscript edited as a final insurance. Often, the company you go with to self-publish will offer editing services. Just price it compared to hiring your own freelance editor.
Lastly, make sure the entire package, from cover, to interior design, to illustrations, is also up to standard.
Writing Books: Is There Money in It?
If you haven’t yet, be sure to sign up for my FREE monthly newsletter, A Writers World, and get TWO FREE eBooks:
The Self-Publisher’s Guide, 2nd Edition
The Blogger’s Checklist
(The books offered may change periodically)
In fact, check out the sidebar for two free gifts just for stopping by!
And, if you subscribe in January 2011, you’ll get a 5th FREE e-book: How to Create an eBook And What You Can Do With It
Do you want to get that idea turned into a book? Do you want to write your memoirs? Do you need editing, proofreading, or a professional critique? Do you need an e-book or white paper to offer for instruction, platform visibility, or a gift? Do you need blog or article visibility for your business? We’re professional, experienced with keywords and SEO, and we cover a number of writing services. So, please check us out. Go to:
Until next time,
Author, Ghostwriter, Freelance writer, and
Acquisitions Editor Intern for 4RV Publishing
Karen Cioffi Writing for Children and More
Babies, Tots, and Children