My 2nd, yet to be named, book in my travelogue barbeque themed trilogy will take a lot of work to “get to market.” I’m self-publishing it like the 1st one, and that was a boatload of work. Self-publishing is not for the faint of heart.
I used to wonder why other writers that I knew only wanted to write, letting some publishing company do all the other work. Why give up all that profit, I would think. If I self-publish my book I keep 70% of the profit, but if I go with a more traditional approach, a publisher, then I’m lucky if I get 15%. Why?
Well, the answer lies in all the other auxiliary work we must do when self-publishing. Editing, editing, then editing some more. In my case I hire freelance editors who give it a go over, then I give it a go over, then they give it a go over, then I do, then they do, then I do…and the it goes on. I estimate that in my first book, Curveballs: Sweet & Smokey Down The Barbeque Trail, I went through 7 rounds of edits myself.
Then there is the issue of formatting. One format for the eBook version, and another for paperback. And another format in my case for putting my book up on Smashwords. This alone takes a lot of endless hours punching buttons at coffee shops, my preferred place to write.
Okay, now there is the issue of a book cover. I consulted with the art teacher and his assistant at the school I work at. We brainstormed ideas and what I wanted my cover to convey. The art teacher then made a sketch on a sheet of paper, I gave to a freelance designer, and whala! After a few small tweaks I had my cover.
But one more foe remained. Marketing. How do I get the world to know who I am and learn about my book. I’ve read a few books on the matter, purchased a seminar course, and experimented. I haven’t hit it bit, but I am plugging away.
One thing I’ve learned. The people that buy my book aren’t necessarily the barbeque fanatics. It tends to be the person who knows the fanatic who buys my book to give to them. Word of mouth is my friend. And I love doing little shows.
This is the process I’ll be going through with my 2nd book. I’m a seasoned veteran of that process by now. But it doesn’t change that it’s a lot of work. The show must go on. Well, all for now, take care.