What should you do before going to the printer? The first and most important thing is to know what and how you are planning to self-publish. This is the only way to be sure of what you need to do in order to be successful in your sales. Think about the target audience you want to reach: who is the perfect reader of your book and how can you attract them to buy it?
Before printing your material, you should seriously consider hiring the services of a professional editor. Although everything looks perfect to you, you have been working on the book for so long that even the most obvious spelling mistakes seem natural to you. The editor will make sure that your writing is as serious and perfect as it should be.
If you are good at designing/drawing, then no one could create a cover better than you. You know your work the best, so you can figure out how the cover should look like. However, you shouldn’t even think of creating the cover yourself if you don’t have the skills for such task. Hire a professional designer, tell them your ideas and you will have the most professional-looking, eye-catching cover you could think of.
Another consideration you should make is on where and how you are going to sell the book. This will help you modify the product according to the anticipated sales techniques. Publishing a book is always associated with financial risks, so you should make sure to understand them well before you face an unexpected scenario.
What is the end product? A published book or a full bank account? For most writers, the end product means holding a book in their own hands. That was the ultimate goal they were aiming at and they are completely satisfied with it. However, if you are planning to sell the book and you want to achieve success with it, then the self-publishing phase is only one aspect of the entire process that’s in front of you. This can be a great risk because it can cost you thousands of dollars with no return if you don’t do your homework right.
The ultimate guide to self-publishing Now that we’ve got you prepared, let’s get on to the really important tips. Before you self-publish a book, you have to learn something about marketing. I know, you are a writer and the practical concepts of marketing confuse you, but you have to make such an effort if you actually want to sell the books. Behind every great modern writer, there is a great marketing expert. Since you are self-publishing your work, you will have to be your own marketing agent and put a significant effort into this segment.
You have to identify your target audience without a single doubt! That is the only way to achieve great sales.
When it comes to editing, here it comes again: don’t try to save money here because you need to have a professional editor to clean up the mess. Your readers will see every single typo and inconsistency you made, although you are not able to see it yourself at this point.
Do your research and learn how the professionals in the industry achieve such great success. The big publishing companies spend huge budgets on research regarding the cover design readers would like, the size of a book they would prefer and so on. You don’t have to spend millions of dollars on this, but you should definitely go to a bookstore and take a look at the bestselling books of your branch. You will be able to say a lot about your target audience’s preferences just by looking at the book shelves.
Before you make a printing contract, you should get quotes from different printers and keep in mind that the cheapest is almost never the best!
I know that you are a writer, but if you intend to self-publish a book, you have to approach the entire process with a business mind. Start with an average starting run, because the individual unit price is usually cheaper.
Don’t expect that you will make your book an instant bestseller just because you followed the tips from this article, but I can confidently state that these steps will decrease the chances of your self-publishing process to be nothing but a heart-breaking experience.
Sandra Miller is freelance short story author and graduate of Literature from the NYU, where she wrote for the students journal and tutored students in writing. She recommends authors use professional editing services. Now she is writing her first YA novel.
You can connect with Sandra on G+