Self Publishing

In my previous blogs I have looked at traditional publishing and vanity publishing, well today I am giving the Tortoise Soup treatment to self publishing.

digital-self-publishing

Self publishing is becoming big business. More people than ever are writing, and why not? They say that everybody has a book in them so it makes sense to let it out. Unfortunately, the recession that has our planet in its vice like grip is making it increasingly difficult to find a publisher but many people are finding self publishing to be an ideal solution.

Self publishing is sometimes called indy publishing because it gives a writer the chance to be truly independent without having to follow the advice of agents and publishers: if you want a pink cover, just go for it. If you want to write a sci fi cowboy novel featuring vampire goats, well nobody will stop you.

Let’s be clear about one thing: self publishing is very different to vanity publishing. As I said in my last blog, no writer should ever pay a publisher to have their work publisher. There are costs involved in self publishing but on a much smaller level, and the costs are clear and justified.

There are two ways to self publish. The first way is to use one of the many ‘self publishing’ companies such as Xlibris. These companies do a lot of the hard work for you, all that you have to do is supply the text. They also often have ready made covers that you can adapt and use. For a relatively modest fee (compared to the vanity publishers) they will make your book available online, but will offer next to nothing in the way of support or promotion.

The second option is the true essence of self publishing – going it alone! To do this you will have to strike a deal with a printer, find a distributor, design the cover and the book itself and become your own marketing and PR consultant – to say nothing of essentials like editing.

If this sounds too daunting then maybe this option wouldn’t be ideal for you, but if you love the freedom that self publishing can bring – and if you have a creative and entrepreneurial streak a mile wide, then you might find self publishing your book to be the most rewarding thing in your life. And because you are doing nearly all of the work yourself, the costs are surprisingly low and the potential rewards can be very high.

So have you decided which publishing option is for you? Let me know your thoughts below. In the coming days and weeks I will be giving lots more hints and tips about getting your book into print. I will also be looking at the technical side of getting your book into print such as which design packages to use, and how to format your work.

Keep tapping away at that keyboard, Tortoise Soup friend, and remember that your only enemy is procrastination!

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