Since, I just finished indie publishing a short story (and ran an online launch), I thought I would come out with some tips and pointers on what to do and what not to do when you release your baby into the world. This goes for traditional, indie, and self publishing. But I mostly want to point this out to people who are going to Self Publish or Indie Publish. This is going to be a straight forward post on why it is important (to your professionalism as an author) that you don’t RUSH IT.
I wanted to go through this, because I’ve seen too many people rushing their work out WAY too soon. What is the rush?
Here Is The Run Through of What You Will Need To Do:
- Perfect Your Storyline – Make sure your characters are strong and fill plot holes.
- Revise Your Manuscript – Work out all the kinks.
- Edit Your Babay! – DO NOT PUBLISH your book as soon as you are finished writing it. EDIT IT. Run your manuscript over with an editing steamroller. (Click to Tweet)
- Beta It – Get it out there to readers. Ask them to tell you what they think of it? Do they like it? Do they hate it? And Why? What could you do to make their read more enjoyable? Listen to your readers.
- Edit It Again – After hearing from your beta readers – fix the problems!
- Professional Editor – Get a professional editor. And when I say professional, I mean someone who proves worthy. How should you find an editor? Do your research. You may even want to check with other writers, whose work you enjoy. Don’t hire anyone – just because they say they are an editor.
- Professional Cover – This one is also VERY important. It is one of the first things people see about your book. (if you aren’t design savvy, hire someone to do it for you.)
- Back Cover Blurb – Write the perfect back cover blurb for your book. Make sure you perfect it, so it pulls readers in and shows your story as it really is. Don’t mislead your readers. Write a good blurb, so you don’t have to rewrite it later.
- The Query – A well known editor spoke about how indie/self published authors should type up a query letter for their novel as well. It isn’t just for traditional published authors. It makes you know everything that goes into your story!
- Different digital formats – People read on plenty of different e-readers. Make it available to everyone.
- Launch Advertising – Get people excited about your book in advance. Don’t just set up a launch that is going to happen in a few weeks. You won’t have many people coming to it – if you don’t advertise for it well in advance. (Good Launch Time is usually 3 months before your book comes out. So you can get a lot of attention, before the big day!)
- Market – Market it, share it, and have your friends share it. Get your name and your story out there. How else will people know about it?
This list is really important. Many authors have said it over and over, because it is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT!
DO NOT RUSH YOUR BOOK OUT INTO THE WORLD, BEFORE IT’S READY.
The list above usually takes months and even years for authors to get all finished before they see their books on shelves (digital or not).
When authors rush…
…to get their book printed, put on amazon, and pushed out way to early, they have a much higher risk of ruining their professional image. It will harm them in the long run! When authors push their books into the world too soon they will RUIN TWO IMPORTANT THINGS.
First off, it ruins your professional image. Especially if your story or novel is cluttered with basic writing problems such as typos, lack of showing + more telling, and many other issues. This ruins your look as a “Professional Author” and this is what gives “Self Published” Authors a bad name. To check out an author who did a great professional job at self publishing check out Hugh Howey. I did an interview with him here.
Also, covers… make sure they look professional. If they don’t – then they LOOK self published and that ruins your professional status as an author. Because people do judge books, by their covers.
Second of all, when you don’t give your book a big enough launch period, you aren’t going to have many people interested. They say you should start advertising your book 3 months in advance. If you don’t, you aren’t going to have enough interest and you won’t get as many people buying it. Also, everything above in point number 1… if you don’t make it all look professional – that will turn off your readers and they most likely won’t pick up your book.
INSTEAD…make your book eye catching, beautifully shiny clean on the inside, and give it enough time, so you can advertise and get the interest your book deserves. :)