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New to self-publishing? Read this book first...

By James Minter, Apr 28 2017 09:24AM

Self-publishing is now a very accepted way to bring your novel to market – even the most successful authors like JK Rowling are using this approach. However, writing a novel to the standards demanded by readers is, in many writers minds, the biggest and principle issue they face. As a self-published author of twelve books, believe me when I say that writing an attention-grabbing story, though significant, is only one step to becoming a successful author. The demands of the self-publishing process are high, complex, time-consuming, frustrating, bewildering and at times, make you question is it all worth it.

Any author going down the self-publishing road needs all the help they can get. As V.V Cam says in her introduction, there is a heap of information out there on the internet, but what she has done is make a good attempt at bringing it all together into a single place. By doing so this she’s made the information more accessible, as well as presenting it in a logically structured style – you only need to read the Table Of Contents to see that. Moreover, it is heavily spread with her own hard-won knowledge and experience gained by going through the process with her husband’s book. That’s why I love “How to…” books. They capture hard-won knowledge and experience and make it available in an easily consumable form so saving you making the same mistakes or going off tangent.

People write for many reasons, but not everyone attempts to publish their work. A useful device V.V Cam employs throughout the book is self-assessment questionnaires. In chapter two she offers one appropriate to answer the question – is self-publishing right for you. I recommend you complete this since you will better understand why your writing and if you’ve the time/tenacity/money to bring you book to the general public.

Self-publishing is a big, evolving process, and a guide such as this cannot be complete or totally up to date. As with all eBooks, it can constantly be corrected, amended, or added to. V.V Cam makes a good use of live links to allow the reader to explore some of the software products and tools she mentions.

I’m a visual person, and for me, I would like to have seen a diagram covering the whole process. That way each chapter could reference the diagram as the book unfolds so you can monitor your progress. By its very nature the publishing steps are interrelated, and on a few occasions reference is made to an item like ISBN’s or Tax Identification Number but not discussed until much later. Also, some recommendations like grabbing your Author page on Goodreads and Amazon were weak suggestions rather than being presented as a must do. Additionally, I felt chapters 6, 7, and 8 were rushed/sketchy and needed more attention.

In conclusion, a book worth purchasing but there are gaps, but in fairness writing the definitive guide would be near on impossible.

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