Is self publishing the way to go?

by Katrina Mandrake-Johnston
(BC, Canada)

A Doorway of Mirrors #1

A Doorway of Mirrors #1

After doing some research on whether or not self-publishing was the way to go or not, I finally decided self publishing is the way to go. I've spoken to other authors who have done the same, and they also agree that this is the wave of the future.

The horrible, overwhelming process of trying to market the books is a big factor of course. Yes, every author would love to go into a book store and see their book on the shelf, but when someone inquires about a book not in stock, the bookstore turns to the internet to obtain it.

So it basically comes down to how much a traditional publisher is willing to do to promote your book and whether they think there is going to be a market for it.

If anything, self-publishing is great for getting your book in print, even if it is only a few copies, and then you are able to show a traditional publisher that there is in fact a market for it if later you choose to go with one.

Royalties are far greater than a traditional publisher would give, and you keep full rights to your own work, which appeals greatly. Most people don't write just to make a quick buck; if you do have that frame of mind, you'll become very disappointed.

It is all about being able to share your work with others. Self-publishing is great for this, and for being able to pass along a little bit of yourself to family members and others in the form of a book.

It's wonderful if your book happens to take off and make money, but it shouldn't be the main focus.

I've had luck with donating my books to schools and with ebook versions of my books. I still enjoy a paperback that you can hold and transport around to bus stops and coffeshops etc. However they have a device now called a Kindle, which looks like it might eventually replace the paper book; it's similar in the reading experience, but electronic.

Print on demand by Trafford.

Was self publishing the way to go for you? Share your story like Katrina did.

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Jul 23, 2015
worth putting more
by: katrina

Unfortunately, that website is no longer active. However, other sites it's on provides reading a bit into the online books, etc. So, it looks like quite a lot of readers want this option to be able to read a little bit into the book before committing to a purchase. I know I would like to in addition to the back before I buy one. I have a book trailer on YouTube now for the world of zaylyn series which has gotten some attention. I find most is word of mouth. So having something a person can pass along to a friend, website etc that they can check out later and see if they're interested, is far the best way to go. Otherwise limited only to a cover picture and caption, without any other option for readers to explore their interest further, it makes for people feeling like they are taking a risk in making a purchase, unless they have been recommended by a friend etc. Most of my sales have been word of mouth with the customer being able to take a further look at it later on at their leisure, and then with them recommending it to others that do the same.

Jan 09, 2011
Helping people decide if my book is the way to go
by: Katrina

I haven't noticed a significant difference either way. The beginning is important for any book; it's the attention grabber (hopefully) that determines whether the book is of interest to a reader or not. (After the cover and back caption of course.) This is why I included the free preview, as on-line you can't really flip through the book to see if it catches your interest. I personally like to have the option to see the style of writing and a bit of the content before purchasing a book.

Feb 28, 2008
Offering free chapters
by: Steve B.

Katrina, I'm wondering...

On your webspawner site, where you also promote the book, you offer the first three chapters for free reading online. If you're out there, I'm wondering: has that been an effective sales tool for you? What kind of feedback do you get from putting those three chapters out there? Can you tell how often they get read?

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