Are you ready to Self-Publish?
Hi everyone –
Thanks to Musetracks for allowing me to blog with you today!
It used to be considered foolish to self-publish. (Okay it’s April Fool’s Day so I’m going to be “foolish” *ahem* I mean festive!)
Anyway, as recently as five years ago, self-publishing was frowned upon by the mainstream literary world, and probably with good reason. The self-published paperbacks were often priced twice as high as their mass-market counterparts, and you couldn’t get shelf space in a book store with a self-published book. Authors were faced with a future of selling high-priced books out of the trunks of their cars.
Add to the tough sale that the books were often poorly edited with less than professional cover art, and it’s easy to see why many would consider self-publishing a fool’s game.
Enter eBooks and the Kindle…
As publishing continues to evolve, and royalty rates for eBooks climb in the online stores, self-publishing has stepped into the spotlight. And it’s not playing the fool. Not anymore.
We’ve all been hearing about Amanda Hocking’s success, but the reality is most of us won’t sell millions of self-published eBooks on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. (Although you never know, right? J ) In fact, she’s recently signed a traditional book deal with St. Martin’s.
So what’s the right publishing path?
I wish I knew! LOL I think the tricky part about publishing right now is that there isn’t one main path to publication anymore.
I attended an online workshop with an agent who has been experimenting with Smashwords and Amazon Kindle self-publishing, and her advice surprised me. She recommended trying it.
I’ve been writing short stories for years for my blog. (http://lisakessler.wordpress.com ) Some of the stories I’ve placed in different small press anthologies, but the rest I have sitting on my hard drive wishing they could get out and be read.
I’ll probably never be able to place the stories with a traditional publisher. They’re just too short. I could go with an ePub house, but I’d give up a major percentage of royalties on something that would probably be offered at a low price because it’s short.
So it left me staring at self-publishing.
I don’t expect to be the next Amanda Hocking, but I do hope it will help me find more readers so that when my novel, Night Walker, is released later this year I might have a readership that will be anxious to grab a copy. The first reviews are trickling in for Across the Veil now and I’m very excited about the buzz.
It’s also been a HUGE learning experience! I learned how to make cover art. I found people I trusted to help me with editing and copy editing. I stumbled through formatting for eReaders, and I’m learning to guest blog!
All of which I think will help me be more prepared when my novel is released. So far, I don’t feel like a fool for self-publishing. In fact, I feel a little foolish for not trying it sooner…
So what do you have taking up space on your hard drive? While you’re out querying agents and publishers, why not let some of your other work out into the world?
Lisa has published short stories in anthologies including: Dead Souls, Ladies of Horror 2009, Hell Hath No Fury, and magazines including: Sinisteria, Horrorfind, Twilight Times, The Writers Hood, Savage Night, The Murder Hole, Behold and Shadowkeepzine. Her vampire short story “Immortal Beloved” was a finalist for a Bram Stoker award.
She’s recently sold her Night Walker series to Entangled Publishing in a 4 book deal. The first book will be released later this year.
You can find Lisa all over the web: