What does self-publishing really mean?

Self-publishing means that the author will take care of things that traditional publishing houses have taken care of. This doesn’t mean you need to have a printing press in your home, but you will either do everything yourself or outsource the duties of editing, formatting, publishing and marketing your book. While many think that self-publishing makes things easy, that is both true and false. You can do the bare minimum and get your book published and available on Amazon or you can go all the way and start a small business around your writing and publishing. Finally, self-publishing means that you will also be financing every aspect of your project on your own as opposed to traditionally getting financial support if you were picked up by a traditional publisher.

Three Stages of How Self-Publishing Works

  1. Writing, Editing, and Illustrating
  2. Preparing the book for printing, ebook, and audiobook formats.
  3. Marketing and Selling the Book

The most obvious part of self-publishing is writing the book. This is without a doubt the hardest part of the entire process. It is important to fully flush out your idea and work as much as you can to continually refine your story and message until it has no unnecessary words.

It is important to include beta readers, professional editors, and graphic designers for your book. The earlier in the process you get feedback and involve illustrators the better-rounded of a product you will be able to create. Remember that just because it is called self-publishing doesn’t mean you have to do it all yourself, it’s just up to you to make every decision and plan. I personally refer authors to 105 Publishing for consulting, networking, and for their ability to solve all outsourced needs for publishing services while still allowing the author to retain rights to their story.

Take Time to Learn about Self-Publishing in Digital Mediums

I find it important to advise self-published authors to take the time to turn their books into paper, ebook, and audiobook formats so that you have the best chance that if someone is interested in your story that you will be able to deliver the story in their favorite medium. You can find independent printers for hard copies or by using Amazon KDP you can quite easily make an account that will allow you to sell your ebook on Kindle and print books on demand through Amazon.

When it comes time to market the book, remember that you are not just marketing the book, but you first are marketing yourself. Find ways to make both your book and you as a personal appeal to new fans. Use different social media platforms to drive traffic to your website and other places your books or other writing services are available.

If you want to learn about self-publishing in more detail, feel free to sign up for a free 30-minute consultation with me to talk about how to get your book on the right track.