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How to Self-Publish and Market a Book
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Unless you have written the next Good to Great or Harry Potter, getting your book published by an established publishing house is nearly impossible.

Fun fact: Fifty Shades of Grey actually started out as a self-published trilogy.

If you have a great book in you or a finished manuscript collecting dust, consider self-publishing.

Two of the bigger self-publishing companies are CreateSpace, which is owned by Amazon.com, and Lulu, which I have used and can attest to the quality of. Smashwords and BookBaby are two other good options. Whichever you choose, turning a Word document into a book is easy.

Here’s how to get started:

Consider publishing a niche book

Based on my research, choosing a niche topic will get you more exposure and sales. One of my friends self-published a hilarious and very useful book on how to prepare mentally in order to successfully through-hike the Appalachian Trail. A very niche topic indeed.

Get it professionally copyedited

If you are serious about publishing a high-quality book, have it professionally copy edited. You can find an editor through the Independent Editors Group (IEG), a group of former acquisition editors who take on freelance editing projects for authors, or through your own network.

Start with an ebook

Ebooks are easier to produce and distribute and are less expensive than hard copies. Plus, an ebook will test the demand and signal whether you should print hard copies.

Create a marketing plan

Write your marketing plan before you publish your book, so once the book is ready, you can put your plan into action. Your marketing plan should include:

  • Publicizing the book on social media before you publish to generate interest
  • Sharing a chapter for free to entice people to buy the book
  • Asking for and publishing reviews as you get them
  • Researching blogs that might be interested in reviewing the book or publishing a chapter
  • Considering pay-per-click ads

Have you self-published a book? What tips for success can you add to my list?

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