Writing a book ain’t easy!

Why be a writer?

Not only must you have that terrific idea, and then put the words to paper in a coherent manner, but the road of having your book published can be fraught with pot-holes and poor signage that afflicts any travelling the road away from the more crowded thoroughfares.

Not only must you finish your book, but you have to publish it, which can be the most challenging step of all.

 

My process:

I might not have taken the best road, as I believe everyone’s process will be different, but I hope some might gain a little insight in viewing my efforts.

 

Write the story.

Many best selling authors indicate that the story is most important, while aiming at perfect prose is less so. I wrote my story, then rewrote it a dozen times. Adding the odd simile or metaphor seems less important than having your style and getting your story out there. I tried, oh God I tried.

Test market.

I actually went through the process of self-publication with Balboa Books. Once I had a few volumes in my possession, I sold, went through with book signings, and essentially researched my market. Fortunately “Traveller” did have broad appeal and the feedback was positive.

Edit.

Yes, I admit, having a professional Editor pass his eye over my work was a confronting and humbling experience, but was perhaps to satisfy my own paranoia as well as improve my product. I’m glad that I did, as I was taught that my writing followed many of the pitfalls common to new writers. One was being too wordy, despite the fact that it doesn’t’t seem to affect many authors out there in published-book-land. So, after the edit came…..

Rewrite.

My book was rewritten in accordance to the recommendations from my professional Editor and and then scoured by my partner who has the gift of a discerning eye when it comes to the written word. Errors fixed, edited yet again, and the final manuscript, 20% lighter, was prepared.

Just to let you know, this took months.

Format.

To professionally format my work was confronting. It took a lot of research to determine what is the most appropriate format for on-line and e-book content. It seems Times New Roman still rules, unfortunately.

Renamed and Resubmit.

I opted to remove myself from Balboa Books as they exhibited little to no ability to market, failed to pay commissions for books I know were sold through Amazon and, as a part of Hay Books,  essentially a  publisher of self-help style books, probably didn’t have any desire for the fiction novel I offered. I opted to republish with BookBaby, who seems to have more of a handle on the marketing of books in general. Remember any published work is simply a product that needs to be sold, so  I’m now interested in exposure and improved marketing. I hope I’m wiser, and ready to engage in some serious promotional strategies.

One strategy was to rename my book. Traveller was an appropriate title as it was far too common, being the popular title for everything from travel books to crappy adventure series on TV. While keeping with my Traveller Theme, I have renamed the book “Traveller – Inceptio”, meaning Traveller – beginning. I have also added the descriptor of ‘Traveller – Book 1’. Despite prior research, I’ve since found a book called Inceptio, but I hope I can survive that.

At this stage I’ve only submitted Traveller – Inceptio for e-books, with the option to negotiate a decent POD (Print On Demand) publisher when appropriate.

Book Baby does offer a number of user-pay marketing options that I will participate in and evaluate. These are:

 

Readers’ Favorite offer a guaranteed professional review completed & posted on Barnes & Noble, Google books, and social network accounts, as well as on a  personalized Readers’ favorite review page. “You can also post your review in your Amazon Editorial Reviews section, reserved for professional reviews.”

Naturally there are Free and paid packages available.

 

“Share your book across the Story Cartel reader base in exchange for reviews. You’ll also receive email addresses from everyone who downloads your book.”

Again these are in Free of Paid packages.

 

Author Marketing Club offer “A free 3-month premium membership, giving you access to tools that will help you locate high-quality book reviewers, create book descriptions that entice readers, and promote your books to new readers with exclusive promotions.”

This requires Credit Card details and a link from my blog. As below:

 

There are more tools which I will list and evaluate.

It seems that the user-paid process is logically the most popular move, no matter where you go to publish your book. There will always be someone there to take your money. In the end it depends on your goals to determine if they are worth the effort and expense.

I hope this helps

Rob

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