3 Steps For Self Publishing

It’s every author’s dream to be published by a mainstream publisher – to see a pile of their printed books in a bookshop and a year later collect a big royalty. Everyone knows of the successful authors, the team of people behind the Patterson books producing two a year, all guaranteed success. The phenomenon of Gone Girl or Girl on a Train; these are a triumph of marketing. They are in your airport so you buy it.

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But what if you are one of the 99% of authors who don’t get the marketing budget?
What if you finally got through all the barriers to being published and discovered the total sum of marketing for your book was bookmarks?  They made you set up a website, go on Facebook and suddenly you wake up and realise they did nothing and you only get 7.5% royalties based on a 60 percent retailer discount.  Worse, if the book doesn’t magically perform and they will delist it. Your dream just died. 

So why not publish your own book?  Why not take control of the whole process?

They have already pushed you into promoting yourself. You’ve got the next book all ready and given that the average agent can take six months to read it - why not eliminate ALL of them. 

1. Quality Control 

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You have to put it out to readers, take on board comments, find someone you respect who will edit, organise a cover (and test it out) and then either go with Lulu or Amazon, or one of the many other options out there. Don’t make the fatal mistake of printing and having thousands of copies stuck in your garage. Avoid anyone who says they will market it. You are the marketeer.

2. Go with Amazon 

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There is no stock. Choose Kindle and as long as you are proactive on social media and your work is good – you will find a readership. If readers like your work they will let you know and others. They will also let you know on Goodreads and elsewhere if they don’t and you have no control over that. If you believe in it, others will too.

3. Struggle

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To find readers unless you have a unique book that appeals to specific readers, bookshops won’t be piling them up, or indeed ordering any; you are going to be have to be a success on-line. Be pro-active, speak to people, build an audience. You can’t afford to be shy. I have an uphill task as my readers are hypercritical kids 12-plus and reaching them is tough. Be aware that if writing fiction, writing crime is the way to go. Adults have credit cards!

The web is a massive tower with trillions of rooms. You are effectively playing hide and seek with potential readers.  You are busy shouting ‘I am here’ but they are all on the floor below and can’t hear you. But you can lay breadcrumbs, be proactive, be found if you show a path to your door.  I run a web magazine http://www.hackwriters.com (16 years of craziness) that exists to give writers a platform to be visible. You might have some expertise in a different area that people need. (Design Your Own Success)

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Lifecoach for example and you will be blogging about changes you have made to people lives. If you’re a writer, you have to be a plus person.  Writer/Pilot. Writer/Vet. Writer/Chef. I am a writer/teacher/editor/.
There is no easy way to success. Write something good. Believe in it, make people aware of it and keep doing it. You’re as good as the next book.
You can find me at http://www.samhawksmoor.com

BySam Hawksmoor

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