Should I self-publish?
Did you know that one third of all ebooks sold on amazon are self-published? This is because today’s authors are embracing the modern world of book buying. And part of that world is ensuring your novel is available to download 24-7. This is about embracing technology and making it work for your book.
There has been growing trend of traditional publishing houses buying up self-publishing companies. The mighty Penguin (part of Pearson) got in on the act back in 2012 by buying out author solutions – but why? Yes, it’s a way of pouring some much-needed cash back into their pockets. But they are also getting in on the game because it’s lower risk, and quicker. And above all they know now that a self-published book, as demonstrated by the hugely popular Fifty Shades series, has as much chance of becoming a success as one which has gone down the traditional route.
In fact, if you look very closely at traditional publishing, it appears to be shrinking. Marketing budgets (unless you are J.K.Rowling) have been slashed. And, even if you have a budget – that’s not to say that those brains representing you are actually tooled up to work best online. Where it matters. Sending books to news and magazine book critics doesn’t guarantee sales anymore.
To get your book heard about you really want it reviewed by someone online. Someone who will kindly include a link so their readers can buy it instantly. Every book mention you get should ideally be just one click away from a sale. Everything else is wonderful for building your brand. But a plug in the paper is still at best a stroll away from your local bookshop who may well be out of stock anyway. Or closed. I love bookshops as much as the next reader. But as an author you need to be clear. This is a business. And if you want your product to sell well – put it where people are buying.
Your book will sell best online. And ideally on Amazon – where it’s got 5 stars and 100s of reviews (mixed is still okay) and it’s hitting the top of the ‘Most Popular’ lists.
So, before you dismiss what used to be called ‘Vanity publishing’ think about what self-publishing can offer you:
More money: Self-publishing gives a bigger percentage of royalties to the author.
Quicker: Self-publishing cuts down the time to publication from 1-2 years to a matter of a few months.
Best of both worlds: If you self-publish you can still pay for separate services like editing, proofing and getting yourself a professionally designed book jacket.
No interference: With self-publishing it’s your baby – no agent or publisher making you change a thing. It’s your book, published the way you want it.
Cost: With ebooks and Print On Demand publishing as well as Amazon’s well regarded Createspace (read Dean Fetzer’s great tips on getting the best of this route) you can get your book out for a fraction of the cost of a traditional publisher. For an ebook, as little as a few hundred pounds.
So there you have it: the reasons why more new and established writers are embracing the self-publishing revolution.
It might be time for you to join in too.