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How to self-publish your book from start to finish

21 August 2018

Free Guide to Publishing

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Get your free guide to publishing with expert industry advice, tips and hints.

Self-publishing is booming, and represents one of the most cost effective ways to see your work on the shelves (digital or otherwise) and in the palms of readers.

But what if you’ve never publishing a book before? What if you haven’t even written a book before? Is self-publishing really that easy?

‘Easy’ is a subjective word, but if you follow the tips below, you’ll certainly find the process of self-publishing enjoyable, affordable and ultimately rewarding!

Think about the ‘why’

Lots of authors forget this vital step, and that’s a shame, because it can prevent an awful lot of wasted time further down the line.

Before you put pen to paper, have a really good think about why you want to write your book. Is it fiction or non fiction? What inspired it? How big do you think the market is? What’s the competition like?

Spending some time thinking about the answers to these questions will help you focus on what matters the most about your novel. It’ll help you brainstorm, plot the right course of direction and ensure not a minute thereafter is wasted on something that isn’t ultimately valuable to yourself or the readers.

Equally, you may come to the conclusion that it simply isn’t right for you; this might be a book that doesn’t need writing. And that’s absolutely fine - there’s plenty more ideas where that one came from!

Writing the book

Writing is hard. People often have a romantic view about authors sitting adjacent to wide windows that offer stunning views of rolling countryside as they pen their latest masterpiece.

In reality, writing a novel is more often than not a bit of a slog, frustrating and requires oodles of will power to keep it going. There are great moments, of course - and like anything in life, it’s those moments which make it all worthwhile.

Make your writing process easier by adhering to a calendar that schedules some goals each week (number of words, pages and chapters - that kind of thing). Create an outline from which you can work and to which you can refer whenever you get lost down those famous little writing cul-de-sacs.

Get into the habit of writing, too - even if you’re not actually working on your novel. You’ll soon smash through the words and retain a high level of quality, too.

Get some feedback

Once you’ve written your first draft, get some feedback on your creation.

Take a deep breath - this might not be easy. Pick a cross section of people - friends, family members and beta readers, and ask them for honest feedback.

Some of it might hurt, while some of the feedback will put a great big smile on your face. Enjoy the latter, but work on the former; another pair of eyes on your novel is vital before it goes anywhere near readers.

Hire a great editor

If you’re serious about getting your novel self-published, you’ll need to spend a bit of money, and one of the best things you can spend it on is a great editor.

An editor knows how to turn your work into what might be a best seller. They won’t wreck it, and the good editors will work directly with you to add that final polish.

Get it self-published!

If you call on the services of a self-publishing company, they’ll be able to help you with the nitty-gritty such as proof reading and cover design. Most importantly, they’ll assist with the distribution, and ensure it ends up on the right shelves.

Wrapping up

We’ve only skimmed the surface above, but those steps represent the backbone of every successful self-published book out there.

Most importantly - enjoy the process; it’s an amazing feeling when your hard work finally makes its way into the big, wide world!

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