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Ep136 Transcript: Tips for Self Publishing Your Book – Quick Fix Friday
Andrea Vahl: Are you thinking about self publishing a book? It can be a great way to add credibility, create a little extra income, and get that creative spark from inside of you out into the world. But there are a few things that you need to know, and I’ll talk about that in our Quick Fix Friday episode.
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In episode 134, I talked to my friend, Mira Canion, an author of many different Spanish readers and a former teacher. She went from teaching to becoming an author who has multiple books and does speaking all over the place as well.
So what did she do to get her publishing career started? She started publishing first with an outfit who did everything for her.
She ended up having to have books in her garage and that was many years ago, but now it’s easier than ever to upload your books into Amazon and have them do the print on demand services or a Kindle book. But there are some things that you need to know. I have self published two of my own books.
One is digital marketing growth hacks I did with a group of authors. That was a really easy way to get a book done because we each just had a chapter. And then I did my own self published book, Facebook ads made simple. And that was after the Facebook marketing all in one for dummies book that was done with the traditional publisher.
And there are some benefits to publishing something yourself. First of all, you’ve got more creative license, you’ve got the ability to market it in lots of different ways.
You get a little bit more of the income than going with a traditional publisher, unless you are more of a big deal out there, they may give you a big advance if you have a pretty wide market appeal. But for me, I’ve actually made more on my Facebook Ads Made Simple book than I made with one edition of the Facebook Marketing All in One for Dummies.
So what did I have to learn? One, I was really concerned about the formatting, but there are tools out there that you can use to easily format your book. And I started trying to learn Scrivener or Word. Those are both options for formatting a book. You will have to export it in a particular style.
One would be a doc file, or it would be an EPUB file. So some of the software you’re going to use would have to work in that format. I didn’t have a good time learning Scrivener. I thought it was very complicated. It was a steep learning curve. I know that there’s a lot of people who love it, but I just had a harder time with it and just felt like I didn’t want to spend a lot of time learning that software.
The Microsoft Word software doesn’t have as many options for formatting. So a lot of people don’t recommend that as a tool. If you are going to self publish, one of the big tools that people use is vellum, but unfortunately that only works on Mac devices, which I didn’t have. So I ended up deciding that I didn’t want to learn how to do the formatting at all. And I hired someone to do the formatting for me. And I just put my book in a Google doc.
There are a couple of other tools I’ve heard good things about. One is the free platform of Kindle Create. And Amazon has this platform available for free, but the limitations are you can’t use any images or screen captures or things like that. So that may not work for you if you have those features in your book.
The other one is Adobe InDesign. Again, that’s another tool that takes a little bit of learning curve.
And another one I heard about that could be a good one to look into. I have not tried it personally, but it’s Atticus. And we’ll link to all of these in the show notes.
So writing and formatting is a concern there, but there’s lots of tools to allow you to write and format your book.
The second thing I was concerned about was getting an ISBN number. That’s not too hard either. It does cost some money for you to get that and you can apply to get that. Or Amazon will give you a free ISBN number with the caveat that you are only publishing on their platform. So if you are looking to publish on another platform, then you might not want to go with that limitation there.
The other thing I was concerned about was the cover design. Now that’s actually a concern for me because I don’t do design work. So again, I did hire that out. There’s lots of people who will design your covers and they can look really nice if you get someone professionally to do that. There are also cover templates if you feel like taking a crack at it, but people do actually judge the book by the cover. So you want the cover to look as good as possible. So I would definitely hire someone. You can use Fiverr, you can use Upwork. There’s lots of available people there that show what their work has looked like, and you can get a really nice design for not too much money.
So once you have those things in place, you’re able to. Upload that into Amazon. You can get a print copy of your book beforehand. So you make sure it looks good with formatting. You can see exactly what it looks like on Kindle before you actually get out there and market it and sell it. And of course, there’s lots of things that you need to know with marketing and selling your book like how to write a really great book description.
And I’m not going to get into that in this particular podcast, but I’m going to give you some reference links to get you where you need to go with getting your book in the right category, getting the description written, all that good stuff to make sure that it gets seen as widely as possible.
So if you are looking at self publishing a book, there has never been a better time to do it. It’s a great way to get a little bit of extra income to have a great tool to bring customers to you potentially, or to just express that creative side of yourself. So get out there and self publish your book.
Hope that was helpful and make sure you grab the free guide top tools for late starters on the website at late starters club. com and let’s turn dreaming into doing.
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