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Frequent Contributor
Susan_Driscoll
Posts: 40
Registered: ‎03-09-2007
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Is Self-Publishing Right for You?

It's not too late to answer the Straw Poll to share your goal for wanting to publish, but you'll see that of the members who have responded, making money is low on the list. In fact, most authors choose to write for the joy of seeing their book in print, or for the altruistic reason of making a difference in people's lives.

It's fine to pursue the traditional publishing route, but for most people it's a route to nowhere (plus, it's incredibly disheartening to deal with so much rejection!) My advice is this: set a deadline, like six months or a year, for getting an agent and/or a book contract. If you're not successful, don't fret--just go to "Plan B" and decide to self-publish. There are many ways to get your book into print and many won't break your bank account.

Be prepared for criticism from literary types. Many traditionalists believe that an author should NEVER pay to be published. (Of course, many of these people work within the traditional industry and have an interest in having less competition!) But independent film and indie music have become accepted alternatives to those traditional businesses...so shouldn't publishing follow suit?

Let's hear what you think!
Susan Driscoll
President & CEO
iUniverse
New User
jdlmodelt
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎09-27-2007
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Re: Is Self-Publishing Right for You?

I couldn't agree more. I self-published my first book last spring. It took about 3 years of writing/rewriting/editing/etc...then finally, I had my first copy in my hands and have worked casually to distribute through local coffee shops and book stores. As was mentioned, I did it not for the money, I did it because enough critics in my life said it was a story worth sharing. It has sold about 100 copies. I spent just under $400.00 for the pro-editing services. It took them about 1.5 months to edit. It cost me about $2.85 per book to publish a 250 copy batch. It was not that painful at all and I highly recommend it. I will likely write a pre/sequel? and go through the same process. Many talk about publishing, few actually follow through.
James
Can a man change a dying world? Or will he simply pass away with it?
New User
Brian_Laesch
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎09-29-2007
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Re: Is Self-Publishing Right for You?

I don't know if it will be for me anymore, but for my first book, it was definitely for me. I didn't have the patience (didn't know what I was doing) to go the traditional route with my first novel. I labored over it for what seemed like 10 years, although it was just over 1, and I'm glad to have gotten it out there and moved on. I've sold 50 copies already, and it's only been out since March. I've literally only promoted it on Myspace.

So I'd say, for this first novel (The Verge of Psychosis: An Aspiring Actor's Journal), it was definitely for me. I do kind of regret not having the patience to try and go the traditional route, but I just had to get this first story out there, and self-publishing was a pretty painless way of doing it.

I used iUniverse, who I can definitely recommend, although I know no other, so I'd be interested to find out what others have experienced.

I sure am glad we aren't in the days of handwritten novels anymore. Although, if we were, I'm pretty I would have still made myself self-publish something. Man, how did they even promote or distribute books back then?

Anyway, I think too much. I'm gonna go watch Sportscenter. Yes, self-publish if you absolutely, have to get your story out.
http://www.brianlaesch.com
New User
Brian_Laesch
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎09-29-2007
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Re: Is Self-Publishing Right for You?

Susan, I'm sorry. I didn't even read your title before I responded. Uh...thanks, iUniverse! It worked for me!

Thumbs up. Smile. Holding signed copy of my own book.
http://www.brianlaesch.com
Contributor
PBuermele
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎08-20-2007
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Re: Is Self-Publishing Right for You?

I didn't even consider traditional publishing for The Dream Catcher Tour and went immediately to researching alternate publishing channels. I eventually chose a print-on-demand publisher (Outskirts Press) because I could set my own price for the book and get the distribution I couldn't easily get on my own. I am happy with the services provided and I particularly like knowing that no trees are sacrificed unnecessarily because it is truly print on demand.

The important thing to remember with self-publishing is that marketing your work is almost totally up to you and it is at least as much work as writing the book in the first place. Know your goals going into the adventure, have a plan to meet them, and you are less likely to be disappointed with the final results. Few people buy a book solely based on who published it.
Paula Buermele
www.thedreamcatchertour.com
New User
lesliekpearson1
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎12-29-2007
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Re: Is Self-Publishing Right for You?

I love the idea of self-publishing. I just finished my first book and a copy is being sent to me in the mail. It's a book of my artwork along with text explaining my inspiration, etc. Full color with lots of black and white photos of me working in the studio. Anyway, I already have several people ready to buy it when it's "out" but the biggest question I get is: Will it be on the shelves at Barnes and Noble? I just say, I don't know how that works. How does it work. I did get an ISBN and a library of Congress number so it's ready to go. How do I get a couple on the shelf at BandN? I thought I'd try this before calling the store.
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cyresecovelli
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎02-28-2008
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Re: Is Self-Publishing Right for You?

After completing my paranormal romance for young adults, "Witchfire," I had my first manuscript in hand, but then came the hard part! :smileyvery-happy:Following just over a year of receiving ultimately encouraging, but non-fruitful rejection letters from literary agencies,  I decided to take my manuscript to an e-publisher. I finally signed with synergebooks.com who has agreed to publish my entire series of seven books. Two of my favorite authors were discovered through e-publishing and are now New York Times Bestsellers. In the literary world, it is difficult to get your foot in the door. I believe that epublishing gives the writer a firmer foothold in achieving their goals for a more mainstream publication.
 
I do have my reservations about paying a publishing house to edit and/or publish my book in any form. I do not believe it is necessary to pay to have your book published. In fact, it seems ridiculous to me. With epublishing, the writer does pay a percentage from each download/sale of their book to their online publisher, but the writer does not pay for editing or book cover design or the multiple versions of formatting needed to distribute the book to various online ebook dealers.
 
I am all for self-publishing, but I do not believe you should have to pay for these services any more than a percentage of your sales.
 
Cyrese Covelli
"Magic Ignites With A Bite."
Frequent Contributor
Irishbookish
Posts: 53
Registered: ‎02-14-2008
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Re: Is Self-Publishing Right for You?

[ Edited ]
After several unsuccessful and disheartening attempts of getting an agent or publisher interested in Rhuddlan I too went for the Self-Publishing. I found many pubilshers and agents unwilling to even listen to what I had to offer. Getting someone professional to look at your work and help you to get somewhere can be a harsh lesson in reality, and a road fraught with continual personal criticisms.
 
My dilemma was that I was told by a few publishers and agents that a book involving time travel or of that nature is a big risk they're not often willing to take. So, I hand selected some people to read my work and asked for an honest opinion, and after they all thoroughly enjoyed my Rhuddlan manuscript, that was enough for me, because readers are the ones who are the ones buying the book.
 
I went with Authorhouse because they offered a good package plus they were affiliated with Waterstone's. My book came out in January 2007. I'll be brutally honest in saying that the marketing is the biggest hurdle I've come across in the whole procedure as it's mainly done by the author (unless you have loads of money to advertise or have a rich investor at hand..) It's been a matter of sending loads of letters to media contacts, setting up a large internet marketing plan, and tramping from bookstore to bookstore trying to persuade them to stock your book (because they don't know you or you work from a bar of soap).
 
Bit of a catch 22 at times but if you truly believe in what you've written, are tired of looking for an agent, or standing in the endless queues at traditional publishers, and you have a few thousand put aside, then Self-Publishing might be a good risk. Search throught the self-publishing companies - exactly what they offer including marketing, costings and scan through the books they've actually published for some ideas.
 
I have sold quite a few copies myself of my book, though I have to buy them from the publisher to do that. The comments I've had from readers has been truly inspiring, and it's these alone that give me the impetus to move forward. They keep asking when my next book is coming out, as I've already written the sequel, and I have to say, well, as soon as I get this one out properly!!
 
As I said, I'm still in the Marketing stage of publishing my first book...so watch this space.:smileyindifferent:


Message Edited by Irishbookish on 03-02-2008 01:29 PM
"As Time Doth Pass, Remember..."
www.traceybookish.wordpress.com
Author of Rhuddlan