Tips for self-publishing your book

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If you want to be a successful self-published author, here are 10 tips that you should pay close attention to:

1) In addition to following this site, join self-published and/or Indie writer’s groups both on and offline. Go to your favorite search engine (notice how I didn’t automatically assume you ‘Google’ everything?), and type in “Independent Writers Group” or “Self Published Writers Group” and watch the world come alive! These are the ‘doers’ of the world, and you can get plenty of advice on anything and everything you ever wanted to know about self-publishing but were afraid to ask. And you don’t need to wait until you have a book out to join! Join now…watch, ask, and be informed.

2)I know this is subjective, but please write a good book! There is too much crap cluttering cyberspace as it is, so put your heart into your book. If you feel you have done your best, then that is all a man can ask.

3)You need to have a good title and a good cover. Remember that last comment about cybercrap? Well if you want to stand out amongst them, do yourself a favor and create an eye-appealing, professional-looking cover. Your cover should not only look good large, but it should catch the eye when it is set as a thumbnail, because if you sell online it’s likely that people will only see a thumbnail of your book.

4)Have your book proofread! You can have a great book, but if it is filled with typos and grammatical errors, guess what comments will be left on Amazon, B&N, iTunes, etc.? Do yourself a favor, even if you can’t afford to pay a lot for a professional, you should be able to 1) use spellcheck and 2) ask a friend or family member to take a look. A new set of eyes will go a long way.

5)BEFORE you hit the “go” button to get 1,000,000 copies printed, be sure to get a proof of your book first! Getting a proof is different from having it proofread. Once your book is finished and at the printer of your choice, request or purchase a copy of it before it goes into full production. When your proof arrives give it a thorough looksy. This is your labor of love, if something doesn’t look right, change it. Better make those changes now than having a garage full of books with your name spelled wrong.

6)Make sure the Price is Right! No, I’m not talking about the television game show with Drew Carrey. It’s important to make sure that your book is priced appropriately. If you are using a Print on Demand service such as CreateSpace, they will kind of force your hand by telling you the minimum price you can sell your book for. Anything about that should become profit for you. But don’t get crazy.

If you are selling an eBook, keep in mind that the “sweet spot” for eBooks is usually around $2.99. You may consider starting at .99 cents, letting your book get a little momentum then gradually increasing it to $1.99, then $2.99. If you are selling on Amazon, familiarize yourself with their Royalty policy since they have 35% and 70% rates.

7)Unlike at a bookstore or in a library, online potential buyers can’t thumb through your book so they will rely on other people’s reviews. Solicit reviews on Amazon.com. How? Easy, send free copies to anyone who may have an interest in your genre or topic (including family or friends) and ask that they write a review at Amazon. Getting reviews will help with your book ranking. If Amazon sees that people are reviewing your book, they will rank it higher.

8)And no matter what site you use to sell your book, make sure that your book description and your publisher’s comments are well thought out. Potential buyers will also look to these areas to decide whether they will buy your book or not. If the description doesn’t provide them with enough information on your book, they may likely pass on it. This is especially true when you don’t have many reviews.

9)Create a website for your book (or better yet, yourself!), and link it to any of the places that you may sell your book. Now that you are a self-published author, you are a brand, and no brand is complete without its own website.

10)Market, Market, MARKET! How can you sell your book if they don’t know it exists? There are 1001 ways to market, so find the best ways for your book. And don’t just think online, think offline marketing as well! I will have quite a few posts about marketing, so stay tuned.

Amir.H.Ghazi

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47 thoughts on “Tips for self-publishing your book

  1. 2 and 4 are among the biggest parts of indie publishing!!! One of my favorite books about the Countess of Bath (oooh, such a creepy set of stories!) had a glitch in it that could have been right , but wasn’t!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post. I really like #7 – Solicit reviews. I think it’s often difficult for us to ask people to write a review… We just hope they do. But if we want to make it, we really need to leverage every helping hand we can.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Love your tips. I follow Nicholas Conley on WP, and enjoy his blog posts. Excellent reviews on Amazon.com helped me decide to put his book Pale Highway on my Christmas list this year. I devoured it in 24 hours and added a 5 star review the other to the others. Honest, detailed reviews by non-relatives are very important. If they are gifted persuasive writers, even better.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I can’t. I’m a total wimp. It may be that I believe in too many things that are supposed to be fiction… or have an overactive imagination. The X-Files used to freak me out, and alien shows give me nightmares. And Ghosts, too. And documentaries about natural disasters scare me. (Forget about the other fears i have about my ultimate physical demise like being trapped in my car as it careens of a bridge and drowning. ) Plus end of world and dystopian novels bother me for weeks after I read them. Vampires are okay with me for some reason. It’s probably because they are usually charming and good looking. I will still follow you and read your blog and enjoy it, because I enjoy it and appreciate your insight.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. The best way to find reviewers on amazon is to find books in similar genres to yours and approach any reviewers who have reviewed those books, they are likely to be happy to review your book too. As an amazon reviewer I know it’s the best way to get decent reviews from unrelated people. It can take some time though, but it’s still worth it. 🙂
    I think point 8 is really important too. Many times I’ve come across a book on amazon and the most basic of information is missing, i.e. whether the book is fantasy, romance, thriller, etc. Sometimes it’s not obvious from some book descriptions exactly what genre you are looking at. Amazon luckily has a look inside feature but other sites don’t so if this information isn’t present in some way and there aren’t any reviews, you can lose potential readers and sales.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Great tips. I’ve learned the last one is quite important indeed. Often you see this part is no so much forgotten, but has not been done adequately whereas it is such a vital part of self-publishing. Really wonderful post

    Like

  6. Great tips! Also thanks for dropping by my blog. I feel like this is a timely question: what advice would you give to a fellow blogger who wants to grow their community and improve as a writer?

    Liked by 1 person

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