Ok. So you’ve spent months upon months carefully crafting your masterpiece. Be it a novel, a collections of short stories or even poetry (yuck). Now what?
Well you have decided that self publishing is for you because it gives you all the power and the freedom you need. Also, there is no guarantee that by taking the standard route of agent/publisher, you will ever find one or the other who wants to represent you. Self publishing takes the wondering out of whether you will ever see your name in print or not.
Seeing your name in print is one thing. Having people buy your material is another.
So you self publish in amazon. You create an amazon author page. You join Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, you start a blog. You do everything you can to get your name out there and promote your ebook as best you can. But wait! You’re a writer. What do you know about marketing and self promotion! At least by going the standard route and finding an agent/publisher, you never have to worry about how your book will be marketed or find its way from the bookshelves (real and virtual) into peoples hands. Publishing companies aim to make money on their investments so they will do what they need to do to get your book selling.
Obviously, good writing and storytelling is the greatest marketing gift of all. But you need to reach a certain amount of numbers before this becomes effective. Look at the ‘Fifty Shades’ phenomenon over the past 18 months. Say what you like about the writing, this is the best example of word of mouth success I have seen in a long time.
However, by yourself, self publishing, you MUST take responsibility for getting your work out there. Trust me, it’s tough. My two ebooks ‘Looking Back’ and ‘Beneath the Darkness’ have been on sale now for over a year with very modest sales figures. Despite the fact that they have both received nothing but 5* reviews and I’ve been emailed more than once to congratulate me on my writing, it’s still not enough to see the sales pick up. Granted, they are only mini collections of short stories and short stories are not everyones cup of tea, but sometimes even good writing is not enough even if you can reach a threshold of a certain figure that word of mouth can then take over.
Finally, I want to wish everyone the best of luck on what they are working on at the moment. Keep your head down, distractions to a minimum and if self publishing is your route, then I wish you well but most importantly, I wish you luck. Regardless of how good the writing is, you’re going to need it.