Thursday, January 16, 2014

Adventures in Self-Publishing: Part One - The Journey of a Thousand Miles

Hello readers! I apologize for not having updated my blog lately, but I have resolved to stay more on top of things this year.

Before getting to the meat of this blog post, I have a couple of updates. Since writing here last, I have finished my science fiction romance novel Heart of Steel and at the time of this post I am trying to publish it traditionally. More recently, I also finished a Weird West novella entitled Sheep's Clothing, and this year I will try to self-publish it, which will be the focus of the Adventures in Self-Publishing articles.

Why do I want to publish Sheep's Clothing myself? A couple of reasons:

First, I found a grand total of six publishers on Duotrope that publish Westerns. Not exactly encouraging, especially when you realize that out of these, only one or two accepted Weird Westerns. Bleh.

Second, I'm starting to become a bit discouraged with traditional publishing and want to try a different tack. I really want to get my book and my name Out There, and a lot of the trad-pubs seem to focus more on what they know will sell. (See my first point above.)

Third, I want to be able to see my book on the shelves of the library where I work. Yes, the Western section is tiny--like the Western section of any brick-and-mortar bookstore--but seeing my name on something I wrote available for checkout in the library would just be Really Really Cool.

Seems simple enough--but the truth is that I won't be able to bang out whatever and expect to just churn out a high-quality book on my own. Typos happen to everyone, even me. Editing services, cover designers, marketing plans--a lot of it will cost money, and I will have to get a good grasp of how much.

By this point I've been working alongside a marketing firm called Response! Targeted Marketing that I met via the St. Louis Writer's Guild (member since Nov 2013), and they're working on redoing my Author Website and working up a cover design for Sheep's Clothing, and I have a lead on a proofreader to give my manuscript one last pass for typo hunting. Based on my research, I've chosen CreateSpace for both print and e-books, as well as distribution through Amazon.

With this series, I will describe my journey through the Land of Self-Publishing as I work to get Sheep's Clothing to see the light of day. Wish me luck!