I hope you didn’t actually think I was a guru when you read this did you? Okay, good. I’m not. After my experience with Tate, I didn’t want another publisher to touch me or my writing with a ten ft. pole. So I decided to self-publish. I used to think self-publishing wasn’t as great as traditional, or published through a vanity press. I was soooo very wrong. Self-published is better, you keep all the rights, and you get most of the royalties. 🙂 Vanity publishing is the scum of the pond in the publishing world, and traditional publishing is great, but they get most of the royalties and have most of the control. So here is a summary of my journey through self-pub with Createspace.
Let’s travel through the process shall we?
- Days 1-3. Decide to write fictional telling of my life. Put it off.
- Days 3-10: Decide to start a book, which I have now decided is going to be a short story series. Put it off.
- Days 10-16: Stop playing and actually write a short story, long nights and no sleep.
- Days 16-21: Have moments of doubt and then finish my story. Edit and Edit and Edit, format book, have hubby look it over, have friend format for kindle, decide its good to go, gather cover from another friend who made it for me. Design back cover, upload everything on Createspace.
- Days 21-25: Editor asks to see what I published, ashamed… I tell him and let him look it over…. there are a million mistakes. Pull my book off of Amazon. Editor does his editing magic several times and finally sends me finalized copy. WOW, lots of changes…. I need to work on my punctuation skills.
- Days 25-28: Finish up editing, talk to another friend who wants to make a cover. Finalize cover. Upload to Createspace. It doesn’t work. Have to make my own back cover, again. Upload all files to Createspace. Pressed for time. Book isn’t formatted right, have a look and fix it. Reformat book, upload all files to createspace. Wait for them to approve. Book goes live on Kindle.
- Days 28-31: Await proof from Createspace. Approve, and then wait for book to go live in paperback.
- Day 32: Book goes live in paperback
- Days 32-forever: Market book for the rest of my life, when I have no idea how to market
- Days 21-Forever: Making endless profiles, linking them to facebook, twitter, and amazon buy link
- Days33: Join every Fb group ever for selling and marketing book, and do that. Connect other profiles to my fb, make sure to tweet, post status, check sales EVERYDAY
What was required to make this happen: Time to write every single day, with a swift word count in…. I did approximately 1,500-2,000 words a day.
A professional editor-otherwise you are just putting something out there that looks amateur, and may get you some bad reviews.
A cover designer-You can do this yourself, but it can be hectic trying to do it all. Having someone else do it, makes life much easier.
A layout professional-This you can also do yourself. You can download the book layout of your choice from CreateSpace and then copy and paste your entire book into the layout. Then it is up to you to go through and carefully check titles, headers, page numbers and etc… and label them accordingly. Also, make sure you check all your spacing in the margins. For some pages, the spacing was different and I had to change it accordingly. You may not notice it right away, but it will look off once you see it in paper format.
Not only that, but Kindle is not the same layout as a paperback. You have to have your book in plain text form, and save it as DOCX. A friend of mine did it for me, and kindle is weird when it comes to formatting. He made the words a little larger also.
Once everything is uploaded, formatted and approved you get to go through the fun process of pricing, and etc…. Then choosing your markets, and then creating accounts, looking at reports. Etc… Royalties are paid out every 60 or 90 days, but amazon makes it so that you can log in on a daily basis and check your sales.
There are paperback sales, kindle and kindle pages… All in all, it was a great experience. I had a few issues but the customer service got right back to me within less than a day.
Now I am in marketing wonderland, and trying to figure out how all this works in order to promote my book.
All that said, no I am not a guru, but I have gone through the process and lived to tell the tale. How can I help you??