Self Publishing a Book

Self publishing a book - how do you do it and why would you even want to?

Writer's these days have a lot of options for getting their work out to the public.

Sometimes I think all the options can create so much confusion the writer get's stuck. And when it comes to writing and publishing a book, it's no different.

But I'm going to help to clear things up and hopefully, simplify the whole self-publishing process so you can learn how to self publish your own money making books and e-books.

What exactly is self publishing?

Self-publishing means that the author takes care of the whole cost of publication themselves as well as handles all editing, layout, formatting, registration, ISBN numbers, artwork, photography, printing, marketing, distribution, and storage, etc. I refer to it fondly as the whole ball of wax!

And about now you are probably wondering why self publishing a book might be your best option.

Why Self Publishing?

  • You don't know what publishing company is right for your work.
  • You can't get your query letter just right.
  • You have sent out so many manuscripts you're going broke.
  • You are sick of being rejected!
  • You want to stay in control of all aspects of your book.
  • You're not going through that again!
  • You just want a few copies for family and friends.
  • You're a self-confessed control freak.

These are just a few of the reasons people decide that self publishing a book is a good idea or look into e publishing. And why e book publishing has become so popular.

So, Now that we know why...let's talk about how to self publish a book.

As you can see, self publishing has changed over the years and it doesn't hold the stigma it once did. There are many avenues you can take and it's all about making the decision that's right for you.

Self Publishing Options


When you are self publishing a book you need to be careful. Although there are many so called "self publishing" companies out there, most of them have a business model that is designed to sell their publishing package, not your books! Please be aware of this as you research the various companies.

They are out to make money on selling you their biggest package and to be honest, I would stay away from all of them. Their so called "services" cost you more than just your money, but also valuable time.

I have created a section at the bottom of this page where you can come and tell us about your experiences. The good, the bad and the ugly. Please don't hold back as others can learn from what you have to share. This is not just to share bad experiences, but good ones too!

Okay, now that I've said my peace, let's talk options.

As you may well know, writing a book takes time, dedication and persistence. So when looking on how you want to publish it, you should take some time and figure out what you want.

Since you are looking at self publishing a book, let's look at what is available to you. There are many good companies, so I don't want to scare you. I just want you to know what you are getting.

  • Vanity publisher (see warning)
  • Print on demand
  • Print on demand with do it yourself option (DIY)
  • Start your own publishing company

Vanity Publishers - This is a publisher who works with authors regardless of the quality and marketability of their work. Basically, they don't care if it sucks. Their only interest is selling you a big publishing package. Please don't be fooled. I have heard some pretty bad stories about authors buying editing services, only to find out after their book was published that there was no editing done at all.

Print on Demand - Generally POD publishers do not screen submissions prior to publication, but there are a few that do. (I recommend finding one like Booklocker.) I work with

You can see my books page here.

(No, I don't get anything for telling you this.) I did a lot of research and found Angela and the crew at Booklocker to be great to work with. Highly recommended!

Print on demand with do it yourself option (DIY) - These are POD publishers that don't help you at all. You put all your information into their web-based program and hope for the best. This option works great for some.

Start your own publishing company - This option is all about doing everything but the printing of the book...editing, layout, formatting, registration, ISBN numbers, artwork, photography, printing, marketing, distribution, and storage, etc. and paying for the privilege! This can be a really good idea if you are going to run a business and have a series of books your planning to publish. There is some great information out there if you want to do this. Here's a great article on publishing and printing your own books.

The man who knows his stuff on this is Dan Poynter. He actually wrote the book on self publishing!

If you like the idea of making this your business, get his books.

You will learn from the best!

Self-Publishing Obstacles

Promotion and marketing of self-published books are critical. Authors must take charge of all the book publicity which means developing lists of editors and book reviewers within various media, as well as looking for ways to get coverage for their book. And writer's don't usually enjoy this part of the process.

Other difficulties include the fact that bookstores cannot afford to deal with authors, or the tiny publishing companies they create to publish their own works.

So, if you do decide to go this route, think about getting help with all this, it could mean the success of your book!

Self Publishing Help

Self publishing can be a daunting experience if you don't get and stay organized so I am offering some helpful links where you can get more information on self publishing.

Self Publishing Costs

Self Publishing Help

Self Publishing Guide

            Please let us know about your self publishing experiences.

Have A Story About Self Publishing?

Do you have a great story about self publishing? We want to hear about the good, the bad and the ugly! Please share your story here so others can learn from them. Writer's need to stick together!

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