Do you have a novel inside you waiting to get out? Have you always wanted to write children’s books? Or do you have an interest in a non-fiction subject that you could write a short book about?
The internet has completely changed the face of publishing — in the past you would have to submit your manuscript to traditional publishing companies, only to have your hopes of becoming a published author dashed umpteen times, whereas now you can now quite easily, and cheaply, publish your own book in digital, soft cover and even hard cover formats.
Independent, or “Indie”, authors are now putting their own books up for sale in the thousands through online retailers like Amazon and Barnes & Noble, and many are literally making fortunes.
It is also no longer necessary for a self-publisher to buy, store and ship hundreds of paperback copies of their books . . . you now have several “print & ship-to-order” services to choose from, like CreateSpace for example.
You don’t even need to be able to write well. If you have an idea and have the financial resources to pay a ghost writer to put your ideas into words you can still become a self-published author. Alternatively, you could write your book and hire an editor to help you refine your written work.
The Skills You’ll Need(or need to pay for)
You need be able to write well or be able to pay someone to write or edit for you.
You need to have some technical skills.
You need to know how to market your book and reach your target audience.
You need to be able to format your book for electronic or physical publishing.
You’ll need to be able to create the digital artwork for the cover and any pictures inside your book.
You need persistence and dedication; first to complete the book and subsequently to market it.
You don’t need to buy, store and ship hundreds of your books.
You can make very good money.
You can use your book to give you credibility or expert status if you have a business or work in another field.
You’re a published author — what can I say?!
Getting your book seen and sold requires extensive marketing.
Formatting can be a bit of a pain.
How to Get Started
Come up with your story or non-fiction idea.
Create the cover.
Edit, format and upload your book.
Self-Publishing Success Stories
Who hasn’t heard of Fifty Shades of Grey?! (even if you wouldn’t be caught dead reading it!) Fifty Shades made E.L.James the world’s highest earning author, grossing around $95 million in the year prior to this article by The Guardian and her book is now being made into a movie.
I can but hope for a similar success story for my daughter, Brittany Willows, who self-published her first novel in December 2013, The Calypsis Project.
Check it out if you are science fiction reader!
And please forgive my shameless plug. . .
I had to do it – I’m her Mum 😉
The successes aren’t just happening for fiction authors – many non-fiction self-publishers are earning several thousand dollars a month, especially from ebooks published in Amazon’s Kindle store.
Self-Publishing Resources & Courses
Learn more about self-publishing on Kindle:
- Kindling by Geoff Shaw must be one of the most comprehensive courses available on publishing to Amazon Kindle. I purchased the course a couple of years ago and Geoff has continually kept the course up-to-date through the membership site, the private Facebook group and by email.
Resources for Writers/Self-Publishers:
- Writers Market by Writers Digest offers a subscription at very reasonable prices: $5.99 a month, $24.99 for 6 months or $39.99 for a year.
“WritersMarket.com is the Internet’s most comprehensive guide to getting published. Since 1921, Writer’s Market has been the “freelance writer’s bible”, providing contact information for thousands of editors and agents, tips on manuscripts formatting, query letter clinics and more.”
“Subscribers to WritersMarket.com have access to an exclusive community site where they can meet other serious writers, blog, chat in the forums, join groups, and much more! “
- In addition to the Writers Market,Writer’s Digest offers the following resources and courses:
WritersDigestShop.com is dedicated to offering the best books, information, tips, and inspiration to all writers, including fiction, non-fiction, children’s writers, freelancers, poets, and more.
WritersOnlineWorkshops.com is the home of Writer’s Digest University, which features online writing classes led by professional instructors. Writer’s Digest University offers writing courses for all skill levels and on a wide variety of writing topics — everything from getting started to perfecting your craft and getting published.
Tutorials.WritersDigest.com is the place for online video instruction for writers. More than 100 video tutorials take writers through the ins and outs of how to write, how to find an agent, how to build a promotional platform, and everything in between.
Free Internet Marketing Tools & Resources:
This is a product I put together after discovering that most of the tools and resources I was paying for could be substituted with free equivalents, resulting in a massive cost saving for me.
I decided it was too good to keep to myself and turned my research into a product that would also help others to save money, especially when first starting out.
The Freebie Lover’s Guide contains details of 388 free tools & resources for less than $10.
In addition to the above, you will find more resources & courses that apply in general to online marketing in the last chapter of this book: “Essential Resources”.
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