Will you finally get this book out of your brain and out into the world this year? Have you dreamed about it for a long time, but do not know how to do it, how much it will cost and how to get people to buy your book?
Self-publishing is fast becoming a popular option for writers of all styles. Are you thinking about writing a children’s book, do you think you can make a good e-book out of your blog, or have you always wanted to write a memoir?
As an author, there are several self-publishing models to choose from, so you’ll need to plan carefully to be successful as you will be managing every step of the publishing process. Let’s see how to self-publish a book in five steps.
1. Study the market
Before you start writing your manuscript, you need to research the market. Are there tons of other books on the same topic? How will yours be different? If there are not many books in your niche, learn more about why there may be no demand for them. Know your market and write a book that suits them.
2. Write and edit your book
Once you’ve written your book and edited as much as you can, you can choose to be rated by a professional editor. According to the Freelance Editorial Association, professional editing will cost between $ 30 and $ 55 per hour. So ask for a quote and find an editor that’s right for your budget and needs. There are also different types of editors, so check out the options available. You can simply ask someone to check your book for typos or someone to research the structure of the entire book.
3. Cover design and book formatting
To make a beautiful and readable book for your readers, you can hire a professional cover maker (the cost will depend on their experience), or you can work it alone with apps like Canva. Be sure to look into tools to help you format the inside of your book, like Scrivener. These two design steps are extremely important, so leave it to the professionals if possible. Your book should look its best on the inside and out – this is what will attract readers and bring you some sales!
Note: You will need an ISBN (International Standard Book Number) before you start working on your book cover. This is a unique barcode that you will need to purchase for each version of your book (Bowker charges $ 85 each).
4. Plan your self-publishing method
Self-publishing used to involve prepayment for printing thousands of copies, and then it was necessary to try to sell them all. Fortunately, some solutions have now simplified the whole process with print-on-demand service. With POD, you can download a book file and the service will print individual copies as they are purchased. These are the two largest POD services in the world:
Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing
KDP is an authoring platform that allows you to upload and host a book for free. Readers can order it as an e-book or create a hard copy with one click. Publishing takes less than 5 minutes, and your book will appear in Kindle stores worldwide within 24 to 48 hours. You set prices and earn up to 70% of sales royalties in many countries.
IngramSpark offers authors the ability to self-publish the book and make it available to over 40,000 retailers and libraries (in-store and on the Internet) through its global distribution network.
How much does it cost to download a book using IngramSpark? For both print (hardcover and paperback) and e-book it is $ 49; for printed book only – $ 49 per title; and for the e-book only, it costs $ 25 per title. Visit their website to find out what’s included in their fees. The cost of printing and shipping a book depends on the number of pages, trim size, interior and paper color, and shipping address. Check their printout and shipping calculator for an estimate.
You can only choose the path to the digital book. To distribute an e-book, you submit it for sale to online stores. Some of the major online stores include:
- Amazon (Kindle) offers many benefits to encourage you to publish content exclusively to their stores. In exchange for not posting your book elsewhere, KDP Select (an exclusive Amazon program) will give you access to Kindle Unlimited, discounts and free promotions. Do your research, make a choice, and stick to it.
- Apple Books available in 51 countries. The publication of the book is free. However, Apple takes a portion of your royalties. For example, if your book sells for $ 9.99, the royalty rate is 70%, so you will receive $ 6.99 on every sale.
- Kobo writes life allows you to upload your manuscript, set a price, and you will be added to their catalog within 72 hours. Your eBook will be available in leading online bookstores in over 190 countries. You will receive 70% of the list price of the book, provided the price equals or exceeds $ 2.99.
- Barnes & Noble Press gives you access to millions of readers within 72 hours of posting. You will have advertising opportunities and royalties up to 65% with no hidden fees.
- Google Play Books makes it easy to communicate with billions of people on Android devices. You will be given a 70% royalty, but you can get an additional 7% commission on your ebook if you sign up for their affiliate program.
5. Promote your self-published book
Now that you’ve written a fantastic book, done your research, and decided how you’re going to self-publish your book, the next step is where it gets a little more complicated.
- Start a blog or website.
- Increase your online presence. Guest and participation in forums on the topic.
- Use social media.
- Use the SEO keywords your readers are looking for.
- Find out what helps sell other books in your genre.
- Get reviews of your book by offering a free copy and requesting a review.
- Use advertising tools and programs from your publishing platform.
- Join the Goodreads Contributor Program and create a profile page where you can give giveaways, have discussions about your book, seek reviews, and connect to your blog.
- Paid advertising.
Further Reading: 5 Tips to Promote Your Self-Published Book on Social Media
The path to self-publishing isn’t necessarily the easiest, but seeing your book come to life can be very rewarding. You can do this by setting realistic goals, preparing for research (and then other research!) And surrounding yourself with other indie authors who have been through it all.
What are the pros of self-publishing? Self-publishing provides many benefits, including the absence of literary agents or publishers in your path. You can publish quickly and you can make more money than if you received from a traditional publisher who gets a large share. You have complete control over the publishing process, and thanks to advances in technology, your book will look like any other book on the shelves.
How much do authors earn? Now that you know roughly what the costs are, you are probably wondering how much a self-published author can make. Well, there is no simple answer. It all depends on your genre, the quality of your book, how well you promote it, and what was popular at the time. Like most artists, you do it for love, not money, but if you are determined to be a successful writer and are willing to work hard – what are you waiting for?