Saturday, January 26, 2013

Steps to Self-Publishing

Happy 2013. Since self-publishing in March 2011, many exciting things have happened to me. If you learn your craft and put in the hard work, exciting things can happen for you, too! 
After you self-publish your first book, I recommend spending most of your time on writing your next book. It's by far the best promotion you can do.
Listed below are the steps I used when I first began my journey to self-publishing in March, 2011. Things are changing fast, including the way books are formatted, but this easy to follow list should get you started. There are many cover artists out there and many copy editors and proofreaders. If you write romance, I suggest you join Indie Romance Ink to see what other authors are doing. If you don't write romance, no worries, WG2E has lots of tips for writers who are thinking about self-publishing. EMS for Authors also offers lots of advice and helpful tips. These are truly great sites that can help you, but if you're new to self-publishing, you have a lot of reading to do.

For the first three months of my journey, I was learning everything I could...reading blogs and soaking in any and all information I could find. I suggest you do the same. Use your instincts when making a decision about when or where to advertise. If ten people tell you not to go FREE, you should try it for yourself before you decide if it works for you. There is no one-step process to self-publishing. Every writer will have their own journey. I know plenty of successful Indie authors who don't spend a dime on advertising.

When it comes to self-publishing, what do you have to lose? Maybe you won't sell hundreds of books right need to be patient. If you're passionate about writing, write another book while you let readers discover your first book. Nobody is going to believe in your stories more than YOU.

Becoming an independent author has been life-changing for me. I now get to write every day. For the first time in 20 years, I am making money doing what I love best. If you want to succeed, you must work hard. Never stop learning and growing. Good luck!

Here are the steps I took:

1.Write a great book.

2.Hire a proofreader. I use Faith Williams at Theatwatergroup. Send her an email and get a quote. More editors and proofreaders are listed below.

3.Find a cover artist. LFD Designs for Authors has done all of my covers. She offers premade covers from $20 to $60 and custom covers now start at $100.

4.Hire a formatter. For $40 you can hire Lucinda Campbell at LK-E-Book Formatting Services to format your manuscript for Amazon (KDP), Barnes & Noble (Pubit), Smashwords, and Kobo (Writing Life). Go to Lucinda's website and email her to get a quote and get started. In a matter of weeks, depending on her schedule, she can have your manuscript ready for download.

5.Register at AMAZON (KDP) by going to KDP.AMAZON.COM and download the prc file that your formatter sends you. KDP = Kindle Direct Publishing

6.Register at BARNES & NOBLE (PUBIT) by going to PUBIT.BARNESANDNOBLE.COM and download the epub file that your formatter sends you. Before the end of 2013, PUBIT will become NOOK PRESS, so you might as well register on NOOKPRESS.COM to download your books to Barnes & Noble.

7.Register at SMASHWORDS.COM and download the word doc file that your formatter sends you.

8. Once you have published, you can copyright your book for a fee of $35. Go HERE.

9.You can also buy ISBN'S FROM BOWKER if you want.
Go HERE to learn about International ISBN’s.

I did buy the $10 Smashword ISBN for Smashwords. And I let B&N and Amazon assign an ISIN #. When I used CreateSpace for my print on demand books, I used their FREE ISBN. The reason I spent $10 for the ISBN at Smashwords is because I wanted my name to show up as the publisher…not smashwords.

10.If you want a print book, it's easy and free if you do it yourself. Register at Use CreateSpace to help you with book covers, formatting, and editing for a fee, or you can go to the site, register for free, download a FREE template and then copy and paste your manuscript into the template one chapter at a time. CreateSpace will provide you with a FREE ISBN number.

TIPS FOR PUBLISHING A PRINT BOOK (provided by Dana Delamar)
If you need help, Bob Sanchez walks you through the process HERE. Ignore the part about the Pro Plan, since that is no longer available.

11. Start a Twitter Account

12. Start a Facebook Account

13. Make a FREE website using Blogger or WordPress. Talk about whatever makes you happy!

14.Once I began to make money, I used Pixel of Ink (no longer available for authors to buy sponsorships), The Romance Reviews, Cents-ible eReads, The Frugal eReaders, Digital Book Today, and EYE ON ROMANCE and JUST ROMANTIC SUSPENSE to advertise. To see more about how I spent my advertising dollars go HERE to see an article I wrote for WG2E.

Bob Sanchez walks you through making a print book using STEP BY STEP SELF-PUBLISHING
Kimberly Killion - Writer Resources
iStock Photos - pictures and music for covers and/or making book trailers
Brenda Hiatt - Show Me the Money
The Book Deal - An inside view on publishing - lots of great articles

Tools For Writers - Pam Roller
Joe Konrath's A Newbie's Guide to Publishing
Jennifer on Writing - print vs. Epub Article Review sites: tips, resources, What's new in e-publishing

Author EMS - Writer's Resource for EVERYTHING.
The Writer's Guide to Epublishing - One of my favorite places!

Proofread and More, Alicia Street
Proofreader, Faith Williams @ The Atwater Group
Freelance Editor, Pat Thomas
Freelance Editor - Glen Krisch
Victory Editing
Laura Morrigan - Vickie Taylor
Annie Seaton

Lucinda Campbell
Formatting4U - Judi Fennell
Brett Battles
Formatting - Rik Hall
Guido Henkel talks about formatting for kindle on your own
Take Pride in Formatting your Ebook by Guido Henkel

LFD for Authors - My cover artist!
Kimberly Van Meter
Kim Killion

Tracy Riva Reviews
Journey of a Bookseller
We Write Romance Everybody Needs a Little Romance
The Indie Book Review - Huge list of MANY reviewers!

Caroline Clemmons


Geraldine said...

Some excellent resources here Theresa, thanks for sharing all these links.

Congrats on your new series, sounds great and wow, re: Germany! That's terrific.

My novel is complete and being looked at by a NY agent right now. Woohoo..I'm pretty excited about that too. You said I'd feel great when I finished and it's soooo true.

Happy Week, G

Jesi Lee said...

This is the most helpful blog post I have ever come across during my research into self publishing. You are wonderful!!!!