Back in 2005, I wrote my first book manuscript for a business startup guide, and I attended a writer’s conference where I had the opportunity to pitch agents. Many requested proposals, and in the months that followed, my mailbox filled with rejection letters. Eventually, one of the agents took the time to call me and he said, “I like what you’re doing, but nobody knows who you are. You need to build an author platform. You need to be out speaking to thousands of people each year.”
I remember the first time I "published" a book. My grandparents owned a bookstore, and I would spend most of my adolescence in the back office helping to price books, doing my homework, or goofing off. While bored one day, I came up with an idea to make money the same way my grandparents did—selling books.
One thing many indie authors come to terms with is that they’re not just publishing a book, they’re starting an author business. It is one thing to say you want to publish a book and become a published author but another to actually do it. And with advancements in technology and resources, many people can publish a book, but it takes a bit extra to start your own book publishing business, and a successful one at that.
An engineer can look at the foundation of a building under construction and tell you its eventual height. The deeper the base, the higher the structure will be. Similarly, an independent publisher must create a strong foundation to support a title's future growth. This preparation is performed in five phases.
Authors can self-publish a book in many ways, from print publishing to digital publishing. No matter the format you choose, providing an ISBN is an important component to publishing your book.
A literary agent can be an author's best friend. They know how to get you the best book contract and ensure that there’s nothing in the language that will hurt you. They also can help get your book in front of the right editors. All of that is nice if you are planning on traditionally publishing your book, but what if you want to publish the book yourself? Should you hire an agent? It’s not a requirement, but it’s certainly an option.
I’m in a torrid love affair with romance novels. The headstrong heroines, the misunderstood heroes, and the happily ever afters are everything I could possibly want in a good book. I devour them. And I’m not ashamed to read the paperback (cover out!) on the train during my commute. Another reason I love romance novels so fiercely is because they go hand-in-hand with self-publishing. I spend my days helping self-published authors share their books with the world, and a majority of those authors write romance. This is no coincidence and here are five reasons why:
Authors who decide to self-publish a book are effectively taking on the role of a business owner if the end goal is to make money from book sales. When you decide to self-publish, you’re no longer a writer, or even an author, but a publisher. Although there is a learning curve when you make the leap from author to publisher, it doesn’t have to be intimidating; it can actually be fun with the right tools. Here’s what you need in order to become a publisher:
The IngramSpark self-publishing podcast is back and better than ever! Join us for Season 2 of Go Publish Yourself from our website or your favorite audio platform: iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, and beyond! New episodes release every Tuesday during a given season.
One of the best ways to learn how to publish successfully is to listen to those who have gone before. Six successful authors recently shared their stories on the IngramSpark self-publishing podcast, Go Publish Yourself.