Thursday, January 3, 2013

SELF PUBLISHING - Hell or Heaven?

There's only one way to tackle

 Just because I look sweet and harmless - don't be fooled!
I'm one tough broad when it come to books and self- publishing.

So, let's break it down into your reasons for going this route in the first place.

  • You are fed up with the rejection, and waiting months-and-months to discover your book is unworthy.  And one bathroom papered in rejection slips is ENOUGH!
    Maybe there's a good reason WHY you keep getting those rejections
  • You think it will be a lot easier than snaring a traditional publisher.
    That noise is me rolling on the floor - hysterical !
  • You've read lots of books, and you can write a better story than most - you think!
    Would you ask a man with no plumbing experience or training to quell the flood in your basement?  NO you say!  Then WHY think someone (you) without proper skills and knowledge, can write and self publish a successful book?
  • Several publishers with nice looking websites are vying for your business.      
    Oh dear! RUN to the closest Predators and Editors, and dive in to save your sanity and your money!



Understand that the competition is fierce. Meet the competition. Every person in the world is absolutely sure they can write a best seller. Most have no talent and no clue - but that doesn't stop them from writing and self-publishing and opus or two. If you want your book to rise like the cream in the proverbial milk jug, you have to master 4x things.

FIRST - Master the craft of writing well.
This takes time - patience - networking among published writers - picking brains - lots of rewriting,
and input from a really dedicated critique group.

SECOND - Editing - You can only do so much yourself. When you and your crit group feel it is as polished as you can make it, that is the time to shell out the bucks needed, and have a qualified person EDIT IT.

THIRD - Learn the tricks of the self-publishing game - or DIE a lingering death!
Take the time to research and mine the copious information available on many writing and self publishing lists. Ask questions, delve deep - especially if you want to print in paper as well as on Kindle, Nook etc. Ask those you know who they used, and who is the best in the field of self- publishing.  Research printers, paper, and prices, prices, prices! This is BUYER BEWARE territory.  No use crying later, if you didn't do your homework BEFORE you chose that !@#$ publisher, or stumbled through the process yourself, ill- equipped and in a funk!

FORTH - the art of promotion.
Remember one thing.  Your book will eventually be finished, edited and published.  BUT -  promotion never ends! It means searching for clubs, organizations, blogs, groups, bookstores, reviewers, interviewers, newspapers, schools, niche markets etc. These and MORE, are places where readers who might buy your book hang out.  Become a literary bloodhound. Develop a NOSE for tracking down potential customer sites. Make a name for yourself and your book in our present day Social Networking Jungle -  + create a SUPER bog. 

Learn how to write a HOT and succinct Press Release. Discover the gentle art of twisting arms and cajoling favors. Create cute bookmarks and business cards that spread the word - YOU ARE AN AUTHOR!  Track down the niche markets your book fits and be relentless. Send them that perfect Press Release. Follow up with a phone call. Pay a visit.  Like a great car salesman - never take NO for an answer.  Bribe them with freebies, your valuable time, or a writing competition might work - whatever it takes.

If you have them, conscript friends and relatives.  E-mail them cute promos for your book and where it can be purchased.  Ask them to send it to friends, and every Social Network they are on. Think out of the box! Virtual Book Tours, author interviews, and ordinary blog promotion has become a big YAWN!  And never forget your pages and profile on Kindle, Nook, and elsewhere.  UPDATE often.

WOW! Are you out of breath reading this?  I am, just writing it all. Am I doing all this stuff for
"The Revenge of Thelma Hill,"  the ghost mystery I self-published, with help and cover art from  Agy Wilson? 

Hell no!  Are you out of your mind.  I'm telling you how it SHOULD be done if you were 20 years younger, and 30 pounds lighter than me. Blimey, mate, I have palpitations just thinking about all this - and I only hit the high points!



If you enjoyed this, 
Next week we'll dabble in the waters of how to . . .



Books for Kids - Manuscript Critiques

FREE "Sneak Peek" inside 8x of my books



  1. Well put Margot. Great post. And you have named all the reasons we won't self publish. Actually as an experiment, Lupe self published a book on Amazon called The Wooden Men. We'd all heard they hype abput how wonderful and easy it was. Price of the book? 99 cents.I believe Lupe has not yet made enough money to buy a taco at Taco Bell.

  2. Margot, I love this post! You've covered such important material, material, I might add, gleaned from years of experience. Beyond valuable! Thanks so much for the great advice.

  3. Ladies, my thanks for your comments and insights.
    **Pen and Ink - I self published The Revenge of Thelma Hill - mentioned in this article. It is a ghost mystery for young teens, and I am very happy with the Kindle results.

    Margot's FREE 13x BOOK CATALOG:

  4. I think instead of paper plastic business cards are preferable as they are durable and long lasting...