In the Homestretch of Self Publishing – Part #2

Today is publishing day and I am wrapping up the last steps of getting my first book – Blue Violet – out there for purchase. If all goes as planned, tonight I will be announcing the book and watching the proverbial floodgates open on sales (or the trickle in sales of a first time / unknown author).  Which brings me to what I get to do today to accomplish this feat.

This is the second post on this topic. In the first post I detailed steps #1-5 of the homestretch: clean up edits, front and back matter, formatting for Kindle, ISBN #, and copyrighting. In this post I’ll hit on the last 3 steps of this process.

Step #6 – Setting Pricing
Pricing is an interesting conundrum. Between editing, book cover, copyrighting, etc., I’ve probably spent around $1,000 on publishing this book.  I have decided to do Kindle Select which allows the book to be offered for free through the Kindle lending library for one month, but I will still get paid out of an Amazon program set up to encourage new authors. But after that, I plan to stick to the $0.99/book price.  The idea is to get my book out there and moving up the search list, and not really worry so much about making money. Which is a good thing, because you have to sell your book for more than $2.99 in order to make the 70% royalty. At $0.99 I’ll only be making a 35% royalty per book. I’ll have to sell 3000 books just to make back my initial monetary investment. Most decently selling authors average around 1500 books per year.  So it’s a very, very good thing that this is a passion and not an investment.

Step #7 – Uploading & Publishing
The publishing part was remarkably easy. After all the hard work with editing, formatting, book cover, etc. this part went fairly quickly. After filling in all the details I simply clicked “Publish” The book will be under review, but should be available within 12 hours on Amazon for purchase!

A slight complication, however, has popped up with the print on demand version of the book which will allow people without Kindles to still purchase the book.  Amazon has a program through Create Space that allows you to format and check the book, upload a book cover, and bam, I’m in print. I’m slightly stalled on this however, in that the book cover requires different formatting. So I’m debating using one of the pre-made book-covers for the print on demand piece.

Step #8 – Marketing
My last step in all of this happens as soon as the 12 hours is up and my book becomes available for consumption. I will work with book reviewers to hopefully help get the book moving up the search list. All week I will be posting at least once a day, maybe more, on my facebook and twitter pages. I’ll have a blog post with all the relevant information. I’ll link to the Amazon page from pinterest.  All of these things I’m preparing ahead of time today so that as soon as the book is available I can post, and post, and post again. Just this once (or probably each time I publish a book) I will be one of those annoying posters sending out the same info multiple times. But especially with facebook and twitter, that becomes necessary to make sure I hit as broad an audience as possible.  But only for one week (at least that’s the plan).

As of this moment, I am on step #8. But around 10pm tonight, the book should be available. I can NOT believe that it’s finally here. 2 1/2 years after I wrote the first draft and many, many hours of blood, sweat, and tears later, it’s finally here!!!

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