Ten to twenty years ago a new author who wished to self-publish had limited options. There was always the chance of parting with large sums of hard earned cash to find that the printing company produced poor quality books. The author was then also left with the issue of how to market and sell their books which were likely to be taking up space in their home.
Electronic publishing or e-publishing has seen a huge rise in popularity in the last few years due to ease of access for the wider public. E-publishing is making self-publishing more accessible for aspiring writers who don’t want to be signed into contracts with big publishing houses. For the first time in the history of writing the writer is in control of their published work.
Self-publishing comes with the extra workload of editing, marketing and designing, but this is something many writers love to do, it’s a great way to learn new skills or connect with fellow self-published writers. As a self-published writer you will have the responsibility of researching where to place you book, with so man options available it can seem a little daunting but the information is on line if you’re prepared to read up.
If you’re a keen reader of other self-published writers, and involved with the community, you’ll find out if there’s a market for your work, and how much you can charge for it. With the rise of the kindle and other such reading devices, self-published authors can instantly access a much wider audience than self-published author from a decade ago.
Copyright is something that has often concerned authors, but if you self-publish you retain all of the rights to your work and keep any royalties earned. There is also less chance of your e-book being downgraded over time as with some traditional publishers and bookshops, you can keep the sales and interest going over a long period of time.
There are some aspects to consider when self-publishing and these are problems such as piracy, digital text can be easily copied, so it’s important to have proof the work is yours, also time. Do you have the time to take on the full task of getting a book from concept to print?
With Createspace and Ingram Spark it’s relatively easy to upload your book to the marketplace, there are online platform too such as Draft2Digital which enable you to cross promote your e-book.
Self-publishing is a rewarding process, one that gives out more the more you put into it. A great way to support your author profile is to engage with social media and market yourself and the book, after all you’re selling a product, and you want to get it out there as much as possible.
Of course on the flip side is that it’s non-regulated and so there is presently, less respect from book shops for those self publishing but this is due to the high number of poor, badly edited and not proofread manuscripts ending up on Amazon.. If you are going down this route it’s imperative that you take it as seriously as a large publishing house would and ensure that your book is at the very least professionally proofread and formatted.
So in essence, why not self-publish? There’s nothing holding you back.
Of course there is always the middle ground, with supported publishing, such as with FCM Publishing, you retain control and receive the support and resources of a publishing house