Is there anything more thrilling than seeing your finished book for the first time? To stand there admiring that beautiful cover, to breathe in the smell of paper and ink, to feel the surprising heftiness of that book in your hands. Even content that lives only as an ebook is often imagined as it would appear on a tangible device such as an iPad or mobile phone. These visions are powerful and help to spur us on as we undertake the really hard work of spinning the creative impulse into an art form.
Global book distribution can often be one of the most daunting prospects for independent and self-publishers. You may be sitting in your small town when you decide to publish a book and you think you'll sell it online and perhaps to your local bookstores and libraries, but there's actually a world of possibilities available to you that you may not be taking full advantage of.
While choosing a paperback format is the most common route for self-publishers when releasing a new title or edition, it is important to remember the merits of hardback books as well. Here are a few reasons to consider printing a hardback book.
A lot of authors see publishing a book as an end in and of itself, but you can actually use it as a catalyst for your career and life goals. Something magical happens when you publish a book. You become an expert. Whether your book's genre is self-help, business, history, memoir, or fiction, pick any category, it doesn’t matter. It’s the fact that you possessed the knowledge to pen an entire book on a subject or idea that now makes you an expert, someone whom others accept as an authority. One of the best ways to expand that authority is professional speaking.
Just over a decade ago, most print-on-demand (POD) service providers were cutting their baby teeth. It was exciting; it felt good to be a subversive, if small, cog in disrupting an industry where six traditional publishers (now the Big Five) had long decided, in no uncertain terms, what readers read and how. During the reign of traditional publishers, indie and hybrid publishing were dismissed as “vanity.”
We live in a world where content is king. Businesses know one of the most important pieces of information they need to have is their content strategy. Without one, how are people going to find out about your business? Successful authors are not just people who write well—they’re people who think of their writing career as a business. Like any successful business, authors need a content strategy.
Self-aware authors know they're taking on a challenge when they choose to self-publish a book, a rewarding and exciting challenge, but a challenge nonetheless. With advancements in technology and opportunity and a lessening of the bias against self-publishing, every author now has a chance to succeed in the publishing space doing it on their own.
Your author website is your primary online presence, your brand, your “home” and your author platform. This is where people will come to find out more about you and your books, which gives you an excellent opportunity to present yourself and your books in the best way and to brand yourself. You can do it somewhat on Facebook and other social media sites, but your website is the only place you have complete design and editorial control. Make the most of it.
Your writing has value. You don’t know whether it’s worth $10 or $10,000,000, but your work deserves protection just like your car or home. While the legal aspects of writing can be intimidating, a basic understanding of what you own (and don’t own) is key to protecting your rights. So here are the basics.