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Have you ever tried to publish a book, but many book publishing companies have turned you down? If this is so, then this article is for you!
Through a Printer
- Get mentally prepared; self-publishing takes a lot of initiative and drive. Remember that it is your passion for getting the book out to the public that will carry you through frustrations along the way. That being said, self-publishing can be a profitable and exciting venture.
- Make sure that your book is complete, well-edited, and thoroughly proofread.
- List out the reasons why you want this book to be self-published and get an estimate as to whether the reason is strong enough for you to keep going.
- Create a good title that will pull people in. The title of your book can determine if people would like to buy your book or not.
- Get a designer to do a professional cover design.
- Next find a printer. Shop around and get quotes for anywhere between 500-2000 copies.
- Get ISBN numbers so that your books can be listed in the Bowker database where bookstores pick up latest books for retailing.
Through a Website
- Find a good self-publishing website that allows you to publish a book free without set-up fees. Two such examples are featured in the external links below.
- Set up an account with the program.
- Create a good title that will pull in your prospective readers. Your book's title can make a huge difference in whether people will buy your book or not.
- Write your book with a word processing program, such as Microsoft Word, or Word Perfect. You need to do this because you have to upload the document. It will also make editing and revision a much easier job for you.
- Make sure that your book is edited very well. Ask a trusted and credible individual to proofread your book. You can often ask the company to edit your work, if you choose.
- Select the company that you want to publish your book. You must upload your document first. After this, you will have to design your cover (unless you prefer a pre-made cover from the company) and choose the price for customers and the type of book (such as bound, hard copy, or paperback). Once you finish the categories listed by the website, choose to finish publishing and your book is printed. You are now a published author!
- Get a proof of your book before it goes to print. If you don't like how your book looks, you can make changes before you pay a lot of money for 1,000 flawed copies.
- Make sure that your book is proofread thoroughly. You don't want your book to get bad reviews because of typing errors and/or poor layout. It's worth the money to hire a professional editor to read your book. You don't want people knowing that your book is a self-published book.
- Add a great description to your book. That way, it will attract more customers. Use pithy descriptions to draw their interest.
- Publicity is really the key. There are plenty of wonderful books in the world that sold 351 copies because they weren't properly promoted. And there are many ghastly, poorly written books that sold 43,000 copies because they were properly promoted.
- Research shows that book-buying customers look at three things: The front cover, rear cover and table of contents. Spend the money to make these three places sing. Hire a graphic artist if necessary but think of this as the "kitchen and bath" sections of your book. Money spent in these areas will pay handsome dividends.
- List your books on Amazon.com. Give yourself plenty of time to write the "publisher's comments" and make sure it is precise, grammatically flawless and well written. This is what potential book buyers will use to make a decision about buying your book.
- Send two copies of the book to Amazon.com (following instructions at their site) so that the book can be scanned and made available on the "search inside this book" feature.
- Write thoughtfully worded, intelligent and interesting reviews of similar subject books at amazon.com, and create a signature and/or tagline such as, "Rosemary Thornton, author, The Houses That Sears Built." Such a tagline generates tremendous free publicity to your target market!
- Send free copies to anyone who may have an interest in this topic and ask that they write a review at amazon.com. Books with no reviews at amazon.com have a very, very low sales rank. Since potential buyers can't thumb through your book at amazon.com, they'll rely on other people's reviews.
- Start a website and link it to the Amazon bookstore. Sell your books through your website.
- You can also think of using services that offer POD fulfillment. These will make you pay a fee but eases the work for you. But keep in mind that POD (print on demand) is only for writers who are looking for a hobby, not a money-making career. Printing 1,000 copies of the average book costs about $3,500 to $5,000 or less than $5 per book. The cost to do this through POD would be about three times as much. Amazon (and most book buyers) will pay 50% of your cover price. It's hard to make money selling a $15 book for $10 (assuming a cover price of $19.95).
- Aggressively market your book through press releases, articles blogs, websites, and any other way that you can think of because marketing is the core activity that will ensure that people know and buy the book.
- Don't write a book with the same title as another. Give it a unique name and search it before publishing. Having the same name as another book can lead to customers being confused and, on occasions, legal problems.
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Sources and Citations
- MemoryPress - Family History Self-Publishing
- Author House
- I Can't Get Published.com Tips and resources for all types of writers who seek publication.
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