You have completed your book and now you’re ready to publish!
You have two options:
1. Publish your book with the involvement of a third-party publisher, or
2. Become a self-published author.
A self-published author is entirely responsible and in control of the whole process of publishing such as the design of the cover, the formats, marketing, distribution, PR, and pricing of the book. The author can also have some of these done by outsourcing it to companies that offer these services.
There are several types of self-publishing: Print-on-Demand (POD), Electric or E-book publishing, and Vanity publishing.
Print on Demand Publishing
Print on demand or POD is a model of self-publishing wherein copies of a book are printed based on the number of orders received which allows authors to have the book printed singly or in smaller quantities. POD can also refer to the ability to produce the books as needed. Some authors prefer this type of publishing since this is a more economical optional rather than printing large volume of copies of the book.
A lot of authors are opting e-book publishing, as there are a variety of e-book formats and tools used to create them. Some of the more popular formats are .epub, .mobi, and PDF. Ebook publishing is popular among authors because of its possibility to create ebooks without up-front or cost per books.
Vanity publishing is quite similar with traditional publishing. This type of publishing started when an author has no other choice in publishing a book except for signing a contract with a publishing company. The term vanity publishing describes a company, which the authors pay to get their books published.
Aside from these types of self-publishing, there are different major ebook platforms available for authors to choose from and here are some of them:
5 Different ebook Platforms For Self-Publishing:
- Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) is probably one of the most popular platforms for authors who wishes to go the self-publishing road. One of the major advantages of working with Amazon is the incentive it offers to authors through its KDP Select program such as when authors who offer their books through KDP can have them be included in the Kindle Owners Lending Library which would mean for the author earning money each time their books are borrowed. The chief disadvantage for going this way is that the author is limiting their book’s discoverability by offering the book through one platform.
- iBooks Author – is an app that’s available for Mac users and this platform allows authors to create graphic-heavy projects such as interactive novels or children’s books. These contents can be distributed through Apple’s iBookstore. One difference with this platform from other platforms is that this does not provide authors with an ISBN (International Standard Book Number). What this platform does is it directs the authors to Bowker’s identifier services page, which charges $125 for one ISBN.
- Smashwords – is the largest distributor for indie e-books in the world. They carry more than 180,000 titles in its catalog. An author can convert their Word document into any of the nine ebook formats and then for distribution to the major ebookstores. This platform also offers free book-marketing guide to authors.
- Nook Press – this is the rebranded version of Publt! The site belongs to Barnes & Noble and books using this platform is distributed through the Nook Bookstore. This platform is more limited than platforms like KDP and Smashwords. However, the new interface makes it simpler for authors to convert their content to other formats, upload them, and edit their work. The authors can now also collaborate with other writers and also share their work through the platform’s web-based authoring tool.
Each author has their own story to tell during their journey towards their goal, which is to get their content published. Choosing the platform, format and type of publishing are part of the process that an author has to experience when deciding to self publish. Here are some other things you need to know more about self publishing your book:
Facts About Self-Publishing Your Book
Here are some facts to take into consideration when choosing the self-publishing route.
1. It’s easy! When you decide to go with the self-publishing way, you choose an easier task. Self-publishing a print book or an e-book is easy. You control all creative aspects; from the front cover design to the format of the font. When you manage to get the formatting correctly, you can upload and send it to a self-publisher of your choice and get a book back within a couple of days, the longest within a couple of weeks.
2. Best bet, go digital. With the proliferation of e-books online, most readers now prefer buying books online which would saved them the time going to a bookstore, locating the books that they want and buying the books. When you have completed writing your book on a Word document, which most authors use, you can look for an online site that offers free conversion of your books.
3. Everybody’s doing self-publishing. Because it’s way easier than getting a publisher, most of the authors are doing self-publishing. This means you have a large number of competitors.
4. There are a few good self-published books. Since self-publishing is easy, the number of great quality books are low, and about less than 5 percent are decent and only a few become successful. Take for instance the “Fifty Shades of Grey” series, which started our as self-published books.
5. Selling outside of your friends and families. When you self-publish a book, most of your sales are from your friends and families, that’s approximately about 100-150 books. With traditional publishing companies are publishing large volumes of copies of a few books, self-publishing makes money by publishing 100 copies of hundreds of books.
6. It is difficult to create a professional looking book. Creating a “professional” looking book is quite hard and would require money. “Professional” book takes about a few months before it gets published. Authors would hire editors as well graphic artists for the cover, as an investment to make everything look professionally done and you’d be relieved to have invested in it when you get the final product.
7. Self-publishing won’t guarantee sales. If you have created an ordinary book, don’t expect great sales for it. Even the good ones are still not guaranteed that they’d make it big right away. This only means that quality doesn’t entirely spell out success in a matter of days. Look for other source of income or if you have a day job, don’t quit yet.
8. Be unique and creative in creating a title. Make sure that when you create a title, you don’t get buried in search results. Some authors tend to put too many products associated with their book’s title. Your title should come up in the first couple of search results, which means your book is easy to find when a person does a search in Amazon or Google. However, some authors are now creating titles that are quite similar to book titles that are bestsellers.
9. Books from a niche do better. When you are into self-publishing, niche books do better. Some niche do better than the others such as romance, erotica novels.
10. Having your own ISBN. Once you have established your self on the world of self-publishing, you can buy your own International Standard Book number (ISBN) and create your own publishing company.
11. Hire professionals to “whip” your book. After you’ve written your books, you might want to consider having some professionals make it into something and get it out there and make the sale. However, these services cost a lot of money. You need to be cautious when considering companies. Check for testimonials from their past clients.
12. Make self-publishers care about the success of your book. Most of the self-publishers say they care but in truth they don’t give a single thought about it. You have to make them care.
13. Be hands-on and ask questions. Search for companies where you can talk to a live person for customer support so that you can ask questions and if you have complaints, let them know it so that they can assist you.
14. Be relentless. Don’t make the mistake that other people make when it comes to self-publishing wherein they put out a book and expect it to sell by itself. You need to relentless in promoting your stuff.
15. Negotiate. Some self-publishing companies offer special deals and packages on their services. You should take advantages of these and you might think of asking getting more deals such as free copies of your books. Keep in mind that you need to negotiate for better deals or packages.
16. Your book cover design should look good on thumbnail size. Amazon has become the leading bookseller, so you need to make sure that your book cover stands out as a thumbnail image since it’s what the people would see when browsing for books.
17. Don’t forget your Amazon page. You need to make most out of your Amazon page as this is where buyers would buy your book. Take advantage of the tools that Amazon has to help you make your book’s presence known.
18. Take note of the pricing of your book. Setting a price for a book requires creativity on the part of the author. You need to consider the book’s potential readers and also what you hope to accomplish within the book.
When you choose the route of self-publishing, you need to be realistic. Don’t think that you’re going to become a millionaire bestseller author overnight. Remember that most authors don’t make tons of money through self-publishing. It requires time, energy and hard work. It’s not an overnight money making scheme.
Self-publishing is not an easy road. You have to be patient and determined to be a success. Most authors who went the self-publishing way would say that they had to work harder and persevere in order to be able to achieve their goals as authors.
>>> Here are a few additional blogs post that we’ve written that you might want to read:
>>> Here are a few other articles from the web that will complete your learning
1. What is Self-Publishing
2. What you need to know aboutSelf-Publishing