Four Things to do before Self Publishing Your Book

Not that long ago, self-publishing your book was considered
equal to sporting a scarlet letter on your chest. It was embarrassing because
it meant you weren’t ‘good enough’ to be considered by traditional publishing
houses. Now, with Amazon and the array of affordable tablets on the market,
that tarnished letter has become much more respected, to the point, publishers
are encouraging their authors to jump into the fray. Indie publishing gives
writers control over their careers as well as a freedom to write on subjects
some publishing houses feel are taboo.

So how do you get started in the world of self-publishing?
Here’s four things I think every author should do:
 1. Produce
The more full-length novels or novellas that you put out,
the more you’re going to sell thus increasing your take home pay. When I
published my first story, it did okay. It sold about 2000 copies in those first
six months but after that, sales just dried up. Then I published several more
novellas and a full-length novel, and a friend of mine ask if she could use
some of my novellas for collections. Before I knew it, sales took off and
haven’t slowed down. The little check from my first novella increased each time
I put out new material. Now I bring in between $200-$500 a month from my indie
2.  Cultivate a support system.
Being a part of a group of writing friends who encourage and
answer questions about the indie publishing process is vital. Need to know how
much to space out the lines when you’re publishing with Amazon? Looking for
someone to do the cover art for your next novella? That’s what these supportive
friends do. But it didn’t happen overnight. It takes time. A few good places to
look for your people is on Facebook. There are several indie author’s groups
like ACFW Indie Authors, Christian Indie Authors, Clean Indie Authors and
3. Hire an editor.
There is nothing more embarrassing than getting a review on
Amazon that reads something like this: Great story and characters but the
author wouldn’t know the King’s English if it bit her in the backside. Ouch!
With so many people throwing stuff out there these days, you have to make
yours stand out above the rest, and a good edit can do that for you. A good
rule of thumb—treat every manuscript as if you’re sending it to a major
publishing house. Make it as clean and the content as clear as possible. We owe
it to our readers.
4.  Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
One of the best pieces of advice I received in my
journey to publication was to have at least three avenues of revenue coming in,
or three legs of a stool which represent your means of income. Don’t just
depend on what you’re going to earn from your indie/traditional books—look at ways
to use your expertise to bring in income. Editing and cover design are two ways
to do this. Or you can be like me, and write articles and fillers for different
magazines. Whatever it is, share what you’ve learned in your writing journey.


Four Things to do before Self Publishing Your Book by Patty Smith-Hall (Click to Tweet)

Patty Smith-Hall is a multi-published, award-winning author with Love Inspired Historical/Heartsong and currently serves as president of the ACFW-Atlanta chapter. She currently lives in North Georgia with her husband of 30+ years, Danny; two gorgeous daughters and a future son-in-love. Her next release, New Hope Sweethearts will be available in July on Amazon.