5 Essentials When Self-Publishing A Book
The advent of self-publishing has become a more attractive option today. It has definitely changed for us. With all the amazing technology, someone’s dreams and visions are now being placed on a pedestal. They are no longer forced to wait just to search for a publisher to publish their book. So many attemps – rejections – companies – now a thing of the past.
‘’When authors attempt to publish their book, it was always a gamble likened to medieval times where publishers acting as kings sit on thrones and decide your fate. It was close enough to be a secret society that only let a few can enter. ’’
It could be a viable reason for anyone to give up or not try at all.
When you decide to publish your book – was going the traditional route a consideration? Why?
What empowered you to show your voice to the world? How will you know you are ready? How will you know if self-publishing is for you and if this self-publishing company is the one?
Things to look for when you are ready for self-publishing —
DEAL IS KEY.
Is it a good fit? Personality helps. So does character. Those elements mean everything in your book. It is your baby – your project and not a drive-through menu experience. How you communicate your book to your reader is the key to everything. Can you tell if the publisher has a real interest in your book? It is highly ideal to choose a publisher who has extensive literary experience and business acumen.
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
Make sure you maintain all your rights.
In the traditional world of publishing you generally give up a large portion, if not all of the rights to your book. This means all of the control on editing, characters, book cover design, etc, are determined by the publisher. This is primarily because you have received an advance for your book. When you are self publishing a book there are publishers who cater to authors who desire to self publish. In this case if you are not receiving an advance you should maintain all the rights to your book. All of the decisions from editing to the book cover design as mentioned before should be your final say. You should also have the option of taking your book with you if you decided to leave that publisher.
ALL ROYALTIES COVERED.
When self publishing a book it is my opinion that you as the author should receive the higher percentage of royalties. In the traditional world it can be viewed slightly different because they have a larger distribution, they have provided you with an advance, and there is more at stake. There are some self publishers who will do a 90/10, 75/25, or 60/40 split, with you receiving the lower percentage. In this case, I would make sure you get the higher, because there is no upfront investment in you from the self publishing publisher.
SERVICES ARE AT PAR.
Do they offer various editing services from rewrite to copywriting? Editing is extremely important when self publishing a book. Be mindful of a company that will publish your book that doesn’t offer or require editing. In most cases if they don’t offer editing, your publisher should have a list of editors they can refer. It is true today with technology and a fast paced society the standard grammar has become more relaxed. However, you still want a quality product that will stand the test of time. Other services you should look for are marketing that includes social media, graphic and website design.
When self publishing a book often authors assume the publisher is automatically going to promote your book. This is not the case. You as the author should have an option of acquiring those additional services.
TIMING IS EVERYTHING.
Yes, I know everything is done at the speed of light today. We no longer have to wait on the 6 o’clock news to find out what’s happening around the world. We can email a document that used to have to travel by what we now have labeled “snail mail”. Although this has made our lives easier, when self publishing a book, we still want to value the time it takes to create a quality product. Again, self publishing should not mean you should compromise and produce an inferior product. That’s what the big guys and critics expect and/or automatically assume. I have seen companies that promote one to two week turn-rounds. That might be the case. However, please allow yourself the time for editing, correct formatting, the right cover design, to receive a proof (an actual copy of your book), etc. A reasonable amount of time should be 60 to 90 days, but this is determined by so many variables. How long it takes you to submit your work, and to sign off. You may realize that an entire chapter needs to be deleted. Allow for creativity which is often something that shouldn’t be rushed. Remember experts say today a book is the new business card. What do you want yours to say?