Self-Publishing – All You Need To Know
I’m not stating anything new when I say that writing and completing a book is a huge undertaking. Yes, I’m sure you’ve all heard this a million times in author interviews. It takes dedication, daily practice and the ability to handle not only criticism but rejection from agents and publishers who refer to the dozens of manuscripts received daily as the sludge pile.
In my case I’d waited patiently for the definitive yes from one publisher who insisted they were interested yet dragged their heels for six months humming and hawing about what was for me, my lovingly crafted first oeuvre. Finally I begged them to release my manuscript back to me, and having regained control then decided to jump in at the deep end with self publishing.
Ah ha, self- publishing! If you think writing a novel is a biggie, let me tell you it is a slice of blackberry pie in comparison to entering into the business of publishing and promoting your own book. That aside, it has certain advantages for the author, who retains not only full rights but also creative control over their own work.
As I promote my book through social networks like Twitter and Facebook, I’m becoming more aware of the different resources available to self published authors. After running a recent kindle promotion involving different promotional sites, I’m still trying to separate the wheat form the chaff and figure out what areas worked best for me.
Several writers hoping to go the self publishing route have contacted me for advice and for that reason I’ve compiled a list of resources I found most helpful.
For aspiring writers
- Inkwell Writers – For new Irish writers wishing for a support network first stop is The Inkwell Writers group. Here you will find details of everything from writing courses to names of would be mentors. Run by Vanessa O’ Loughlin, it has everything a writer needs to get into their writing mojo and later move from pitch to publication.
- Writing.ie – Affiliated to Inkwell, they offer advice on everything from courses to self-publishing.
- The Irish Writers Centre – In Dublin.
- Design for writers – At Design for writers, Andrew Brown offers website/blog design and book cover design.
- Original Writing
Advice from Authors on Self Publishing
Post Publication is all about promotion. All writers whether self published or published by a traditional publisher need an on-line presence through social media. Top of the list is a personal website, followed by involvement on Twitter and Facebook. Connecting with other authors is invaluable as they offer tips, advice and support. It is such a great feeling to connect with like minded people and relationships develop as tweets become conversations needing skype time. The latest trend in Twitter parties can result in burning the midnight oil as we have a laugh with ‘Tweeps’ (folk who tweet) in L.A. and various other time zones.
Author support Sites
The coveted gold Awesome Indies Seal
These are four I have joined:
- Awesome Indies or AIA are a select group of authors ( small in numbers but growing). Books must come up to an acceptable standard before the author can join this group. Members may use the beautiful gold seal on their books to indicate their book has been approved and they are members of AIA. Though I have been given the seal I have not yet had it placed on my book cover.
- Authors Social Media Support Group – ASMSG are a fantastic group to join. Using the twitter hashtag #ASMSG guarantees friendly Twitter exchanges and support from other members of the group.
- The Independent Author Network is another fantastic forum to have your own author page on. Again, use of the Twitter hashtag in a tweet attracts support and re -tweeting from members of #IAN1
- The Independent Author Index is similar to the two above in offering support to authors. The hashtag #iaindex is used on twitter as a means of identification.
Some great promotional sites
These are vehicles to highlight kindle promotions and raise the profile of your book
- World Literary Café. WLC is one of the most popular sites to get acquainted with. More like a community for writers, they offer everything from editing services, to book cover design and finally vehicles for promoting your book. They also encourage authors to tweet each others books.
- Bookbub.com. Bookbub has over a million active subscribers and you can promote any ebook in any store (Amazon, Apple, Nook, etc). They are expensive to advertise with but authors claim to sell lots of books as a result.
- Indie Author News. Offer a variety of packages from showcasing to tweeting your book. Excellent value for paid promotions and very professional to deal with.
- Digital Book Today. Again offer a variety of packages from ‘Book of the day’ to tweeting your book on promotional days. They are often booked out months in advance.
- Author Marketing Club. There are tons of resources and lots of other authors to share your work with. There is a free and paid membership, but if you plan to just post your books it’s a great place to do just that.
- FreeEbooksDaily.net. This site posts both free and bargain kindle books on a daily basis. They have almost 10,000 facebook fans and over 16,000 active email subscribers
- Pixel of Ink – features daily publishing of free kindle books and special offers.
- It’s write now at www.itswritenow.com offers a great selection of free ebooks.
- Bargain ebook hunter offers the same as the two above.
- The Writers Kaboodle offers complimentary Interviews to published authors and writers on Twitter. They also offer paid Interviews on Twitter or Facebook to include a complimentary book review. However, once a month they do whimsical reviews of authors who participate in the #WritersKaboodle TweetChat. Supposedly great fun – I have yet to participate in it.
So there’s my index. Please leave a comment if you feel there are other important resources. It is of course impossible to include the entire ever expanding list, but your comments are welcome.