This post was originally posted on Adazing.com, which is run by CJ McDaniel. Adazing offers great tools, software, and tips all aimed to help make self-published authors’ jobs easier and your book better. You can read the original post here. Also, check out the other amazing resources CJ’s site has to offer.
I am a few months into the release of my first book, “Rising Above Statistics: Success Against All Odds” and the work is just beginning. I chose to self-publish my book and people constantly ask me “Why?” After all, self-publishing is hard work. Write the book, edit the book, format it, find a cover designer, upload it, market it, and finally sell it…whew! Just reading this list makes me tired, but honestly, I never thought about any of this while writing my book.
I had a story; I wanted to write a book, so I did.
Now, I will admit that the writing, editing, formatting, and finalizing of the book is the easy part. The real work of self-publishing starts AFTER you have completed and published your masterpiece. Sales are great in the beginning because you have family, friends, and supporters who will rush to buy your work, but what happens when you have cycled through your circle? The sales slowdown, you have a stockpile of books, and you ponder what to do next. You create post after post on social media, launch sponsored ads, but still, no one is buying your book. You make it available on Amazon as a Kindle book and other platforms, but still nothing. This could easily discourage the faint of heart.
Self-publishing is not for someone who is quick to give up and jump onto the next big idea. Self-publishing and the subsequent marketing is hard work. You have to be innovative in your intentions, make networking connections on various platforms, and commit yourself to do the work. You have to spread the work in creative ways and do whatever is necessary to let people know.
“HEY, I WROTE A BOOK. BUY A COPY, WON’T YOU!”
Then sometimes, you have to face the reality that no matter how much you market and sell, for some reason people just are not buying your book. You get a lot of great feedback and reviews from various sources, yet sales are still slow. You start questioning your craft, wondering do you really have what it takes to be an author. Self-doubt creeps in.
You then realize this literary world is full of books, full of people hustling every day to get their work read and seen. You are not alone, just new to the scene. A new author arriving on a scene inundated with books: e-books, paperbacks, hardcovers, fiction, non-fiction, etc.
It will take more than a couple of months for your book to catch momentum when you are a lonely, self-published author. You do not have the backing of a publishing company that will market and do promotions for you, so naturally, it will take longer.
After knowing all this, my answer to the question “why?” is simple.
I chose to self-publish because this is my work, my words, my time put into this craft.
This is my gift which I want to maintain creative control and deliver my book the way I choose. I do not want to feel pressured by deadlines, have my release date shuffled around for a better-known author, or be stuck in a contract, fighting for the rights to my book if the publishing relationship is not a good match.
I want to live my dream and be happy in the process. So no, I do not have second thoughts about self-publishing and I hope you do not either. It is hard work, but it is also a learning process, which in the end, will be very rewarding.
So if you want to write a book, do it! The resources and support online are unlimited. Take from me, if I can do it, you can too!
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Until Next Time,