continued from previous page 3. If you include photography in your book, pay attention to the quality. Would color photography enhance your pages over black-and-white? Nothing looks worse than pixelated photographs because the resolution wasn’t high enough for print. Every element of your book should look top-notch. 4. Ask other self-publishers for their advice. Especially listen to those that self-published first and traditionally published later, and vice-versa. Find out why they switched. 5. Is your topic relevant in today’s market? This can be somewhat of a guessing game, depending on your subject, since by the time you’ve finished writing and printing your book, the readers’ mood may have changed. So while it’s a bit of a risk, it can also work in your favor to have a quirky topic that hasn’t been run into the ground already. 6. Be prepared to market your book aggressively. With all the venues available for doing this today, there’s no excuse for not getting the word out. If you already have an online presence, work it. If you don’t, get to work. If you don’t believe in your book enough to think that others will be interested in it, they probably won’t be. Finally – and I know you’ve heard this before – grow some thick skin. No one is perfect and not everyone writes a book deserving of a Pulitzer Prize. You won’t catch every error. (I find at least one in nearly every book I read, whether traditionally or self-published.) Not everyone will like the way you write. You may not sell as many copies of your book as you’d hoped. All authors experience this at some point in their writing careers. On the other hand, you’ll never know how successful you’ll be unless you just forge ahead. Whether your efforts are a success or failure, you’ll learn a lot about the writing and publishing world and a lot about yourself in the process. Try putting a price on that.
Kylee Baumle writes the blog Our Little Acre. She is a contributing writer for Ohio Gardener, Indiana Gardener and Horticulture Magazine, where she is also the Book Review Editor.
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