Top 6 Tips to Successful Self-Publishing

20 May




Beat the “Print-on-Demand” industry!  You can do so much better on your own! Don’t be fooled by POD Services.

Are you ready to publish your first book? Get to know the pros and cons of Print-on-Demand and of real self-publishing. Follow these few tips, and you will find the road to success as an author-publisher so much smoother!

  1. Bookstores don’t buy POD books.  Many novice self-publishers are opting for the heavily-advertised Print-On-Demand companies, which promise publication at low fees. For a niche book with an easily-found audience POD can be an option. But what the POD companies won’t tell you,  is that neither bookstores nor libraries will generally buy a POD book. However, if you are savvy enough,and have written at least three books (or join with another author) you can find the right wholesale arrangement through Lightning Source / Ingram and Baker&Taylor as outlined in Aaron Shepard’s website and guide book But don’t expect to get the same retail discount from “brick and mortar stores” as from Amazon.
  2. You can judge a book by its cover.  That’s what most people do.  You never get a second chance for a great first impression!  You can get a decent book cover for as little as $100 and a fantastic cover for around $ 500 or more.  Just shop around and find out who makes great covers.
  3. Act like a professional publisher.  Nothing is more embarrassing as finding reviews of your book on Amazon that complain about typing and grammar errors in your work. Make sure your book is complete, well-edited, and thoroughly proof-read. Use spell checks, let it copy-edit, content edit and proofread by professionals – not your family or friends.  These services provide you with a manuscript that makes you look like the professional you are.
  4. Don’t use the print shop down the road.  Search for a printer that specializes in printing books. You will not only have fewer problems with production, but the prices will be much less expensive.  You should be able to print 300 copies of a 250-page soft cover book for approx. $ 2.90 per copy. Digital printers or espresso book machines are useful only for very small amounts of print books, such as for gifts or a book launch party – if you plan to sell mostly e-books.
  5. Get 100 ISBN’s if possible.  ISBN is the International Standard Book Number, and every book sold in bookstores and at most online retailers must have an ISBN. They are the global standard for identifying titles and used world-wide as a unique identifier for books. They simplify distribution and purchase of books throughout the global supply chain. Without an ISBN, you will not be found in most book stores, nor online.  In the U.S. ISBN’s are available only from, and you can buy them in blocks of ten, hundred, or even thousand. The fewer you buy the less it costs, but buying just a block of ten marks you as a one-book publisher. And everyone in the publishing industry can figure out how many ISBN’s you’ve purchased by looking at your ISBN number. Lucky if you are a writer from Canada: ISBN’s are free!
  6. Don’t wait to start marketing until your book is finished. Many first-time writers and self-publishers focus on the writing and the publishing process, and postpone thinking about the book  marketing until they have books in hand (or hundreds in their garage). A book – no matter if it is an e-book or a traditional paper book – will succeed or fail on its marketing plan. Before starting your self-publishing project, find out who your audience is, and where and how you will find them. Get to know your competition, search the internet and in bookstores for similar books. Only move forward on your writing project after you have finished your research and your marketing plan. Even find book reviewers before you start writing the book, and blog at least for one year to build an audience for your work. I don’t know of any self-published writer who is successful, without having a blog. Once your book manuscript is finished, don’t forget to use the end of one book to promote another book you have written or you write on currently.

Self-publishing can not only be lucrative, it can be a lot of fun too. But you need to be somewhat entrepreneurial and do lots of careful planning to really enjoy success with true self-publishing.

Read more about author-publishing and POD’s:




If you would like to get help in all things publishing, have your book heavily promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites: We offer all this and more for only a “token” of $1 / day for 3 months. Learn more about this individual book marketing help:

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