Until recently being self-published was looked down upon. It came with a stigma of not being good enough to be published using more traditional methods. To some, self-published authors weren’t authors at all; they were hobbyists.
Over the past several years, self-publishing has become a welcomed norm. The internet and social media are big factors in the growth and acceptance of self-published writers. In fact, indie presses are responsible for nearly 50% of all digital book sales and over 1 million titles annually. The number is truly astronomical.
Years ago, the only way to be published was through traditional means. Today, there is an abundance of resources available to ensure anyone willing to invest time or money into the process, can put out a quality product and succeed.
Although there will always be some who choose to go it alone to simply have their “I did it” moment if you are looking to turn writing into a career, there is certainly opportunity and it has its benefits.
What Is Self Publishing?
First, let’s go over a few terms to clear any questions up about what self-publishing is exactly.
Self-publishing means you as the author are responsible for each and every aspect of assuring your book is completed and ready for sale; other than printing the books in your basement. Although, if you are capable of doing so, that’s a possibility as well. So, what this means is you control every step in the process. These tasks include the concept of a good topic, writing of the manuscript, proofreading, editing, formatting both the print and digital/e-book versions, writing a detailed book description, and cover design.
Alongside the bookmaking process, there are several things to consider which are just as important to creating the book itself – establishing an author’s platform, distribution, marketing, choosing a printing service, as well as, creating and approving all necessary files.
Many first-time indie writers choose to seek assistance with certain tasks such as proofreading, editing, and cover design. This is better known as self-directed publishing. The costs are a bit higher but if your skill set is not particularly high in those areas, it will be worth the additional resources.
What Are the Benefits of Self Publishing?
Self-publishing can be daunting. It has its drawbacks which will be covered in an upcoming post but it also has its benefits. The biggest of which are royalties, creative control, shelf-life, and maintained rights.
- You have creative and scheduling control of your book from cover to cover and from manuscript to market.
- You are not dependent on a publisher who is juggling other projects so you can get your book to market much more quickly than most publishers can.
- You can control who you target and how you reach them in your marketing and have full control of your advertising message.
- You have the ability to work with the editors, proofreaders, designers, you choose instead of having them assigned to you by a publisher.
- You have the possibility of a much larger return on your investment since you keep 50-100% of the commissions, rather than a 15% royalty.
- You don’t need to seek and pay an agent .
Is Self Publishing For Me?
Being an indie writer and handling all the tasks associated with putting out a successful book is not easy. Even though the commissions are higher and the creative control is yours, the success of the book will depend on the quality of the project. Creative control does not mean you can publish anything less than your best. If you cannot adequately complete the steps yourself, don’t be afraid to seek assistance.
Take pride in the pages of your book. Readers will notice – that’s how you gain true fans. And if you do self-publishing right, the end result is worth it.
Have you found success as a self-published author? If you’re thinking about