5 Reasons to Take Your Time with Self-Publishing, Kudos & MoGo7000 Qualifiers

books pixabayLet’s start with 5 Reasons to Take Your Time with Self-Publishing

If you’ve been writing a while, you’ve probably been there . . . at the crossroads of excitement and frustration. You know your concept is salable. Your story is good. Your topic is timely. But you just received another rejection letter. What’s wrong with these people? Why can’t they see the value of your project? Don’t they know this book needs to be out NOW?

Self-publishing is looking better by the day.

I’m the first to tell you there are lots of great reasons to self-publish, and I’ve talked about the subject several times here at the Christian Writer’s Den. If you’d like to take a look, check out these links to Three Points to Consider if You’re Considering Self-Publishing, How to Tell Your Amazing Life Story, and Do I Really Need an Agent?

But I’m also the first to admit that there are some particularly good reasons NOT to jump into self-publishing. Time is one of them.

In this on-demand world of instant gratification, self-publication can be seen as a quick way to get your book out and in the hands of excited readers. That could be the case; however, successful self-publishing usually takes time. Before you self-publish, you need to consider these five truths about writing.

  1. Good writing takes time. It’s sad to think back on the many writers I know who sat down, wrote a book, and self-published it because they had to get it out now. Years later, many of them wish they had taken the time to do the real work of a good writer. I’ve admitted in several posts that I wrote my first children’s novel in a matter of 2-3 months, edited it as I went along, and immediately sent it out to editors and agents. After all, I knew I was a good writer, and it wasn’t only my mother who confirmed it. My high school teachers and college professors did, too. But I was wrong. After years of rejection, I finally learned that for most professional writers, good writing takes multiple rewrites, critiques by other writers, and some time between writing and publishing.
  2. Good editing takes time. Proper editing involves much more than proofreading and requires more skill than a read-through. Quality editing is a volleying experience between you and your editor. After you do your own writing and rewriting, you submit the project to the editor for his input, and he bounces the project back to you. You then do more corrections, sometimes large chunks of rewrites, and send the project back to the editor for more input and conversations regarding differing opinions. This could happen multiple times over multiple days and weeks, perhaps even months. A good editor is worth paying for.
  3. Good covers take time. If we’re honest, it’s often easy to pick out a self-published book by simply looking at the cover. Like the editing process, a good cover requires a back-and-forth effort with a graphic artist or cover designer. Several options should be offered, with input and feedback from both the author and the designer. Remember, the first think a potential buyer will see is the cover. To give your book the best chance at success, take the time required to have an eye-catching, quality cover.
  4. Good marketing strategy takes time. Don’t wait until you have your book to plan your marketing strategy. My bestselling author friends, Edie Melson and DiAnn Mills, have developed an excellent class on this very topic. “An Author Roadmap to Find Your Superhighway for Marketing and Branding” will be coming to writers conferences around the country beginning this month, and you don’t want to miss it. These successful authors will teach a timeline of when to do what, and believe me, it starts long before your book is out.
  5. Good publishing takes time. It’s not unusual for traditional publishing to take 1-2 years from contract to release while self-publishing can allow you to get your book written and published within weeks. But as you can see from this list, speed is not the best indicator of success. Some may argue that traditionally published books have come out quickly and been very successful, such as those related to current events and headline news. But remember, those publishers have a full staff of experts working around the clock to create that successful, quickly published book. Most of us don’t have such staff at our disposal.

Although self-published books can release on a shorter timeline than traditionally published ones, most successful books are the results of good writing, good editing, good covers, good marketing strategy, and a good investment of time.

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Kudos to YOU!celebration - Morguefile

These Christian Writer’s Den friends have been working hard and congratulations are in order!

1.ย  Andrea Merrell (SC): I had a two-page article about prodigals in the September issue of
Reach Out Columbia magazine.

2.ย  Dee Dee Parker (NC): Dee Dee won the first place award in the Southern Living Magazine’s Short Fiction Contest and is featured in the October issue!

3.ย  Susan Baganz (WI): Susan has finished another contracted book in a series!

Congratulations, writers! I’m proud of you. ๐Ÿ™‚

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mogoWho MoGoโ€™d in September?

We only had one MoGo-er for September, but she blew it out of the water!

#12: Susan Baganz – 27,871 words

Congrats, Susan!

Writers, you have three more months in 2015 to earn entries into the drawing for $100. MoGo7000 Challenge guidelines are here. It’s free!

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That does it for today. Writers, don’t forget to help another writer today. ๐Ÿ™‚

Vonda

Posted in categories: Announcements | Business of Writing | Kudos | MoGo7000 | Uncategorized | Writing Instruction

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  • Nan Jones

    You always offer such good, common sense instruction. Thank you for that. And congrats to Andrea, Dee Dee, and Susan. Way to go girls!

    • Hi Nan. Thank you for your kind words for me and our friends!

  • Dee Dee Parker

    Vonda, very helpful information on self-publishing. Thanks for the kudos for my short fiction placement and congrats to Andrea and Susan!

    • Congratulations, Dee Dee. We are all so proud of you!

  • Wise points to consider before diving into the self-publishing pool, Vonda. Thank you! Congrats to Andrea, Dee Dee and Susan!!!

    • Thank you for stopping by, Cathy. Self-publishing is a great way to get books out to the reading public. But in order to do that, it needs to be done right…and done for the right reasons. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Really good list, Vonda! And I’ll see you soon~~~~~

    • Glad you found the post helpful, Julie. Can’t wait to have some time with you at Novel Retreat!