Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Attention Aspiring Authors!

I have had several aspiring young authors ask me who I publish my books through. They even ask me if I think they should go the independent route. Of course, I have no answers for that. The only person who knows if you are ready to be published is you!

What I can do is talk about the company that I go through to publish my books. They are called, bookbaby.com.

I came across them through their sister company, CDBaby.com, a company that I used to produce my music CD’s. And I found them through my producer.

Bookbaby is located in Oregon. They list their address and phone number on their website. They are also very friendly and helpful to their authors. It was through them that I also discovered Goodreads.


Listen, every author carries some doubt. “Am I good enough?” or “if I was good enough then wouldn’t a more traditional publishing company sign me?” - The answer is this, don’t hang your hopes on some traditional publishing company to pick up your manuscript and sign you to some big huge deal because the odds say, that isn’t going to happen.

Traditional publishers are no different than your best friend who reads your manuscript and gives you their opinion. That’s all traditional publishers do, give their opinions. If the person who reads your manuscript happens to like it, then you’re in luck, they just might give you a shot however, you have to understand, in this day and age, it is much more difficult for an unpublished or “new” author to land a deal with a traditional publisher.

With the current state of the economy, publishers want more of a sure thing. My best advice is this, try to land that sweet deal if you want, but give it only a few years. If you’re tired of the rejections, then go the independent road. Don’t worry if you think you’re not good enough, that shouldn’t be a part of the equation anyway. Just follow your dream. Like a good friend once told me, just do the work. Then, find a way to get it out there for the world to see and let the world decide where it stands.

If I would have waited until I thought I was good enough, then I never would have published my first book, Children Of The Flower Power. The only reason I finally pulled the trigger on it was because I just wanted to write and I wanted an audience. I didn’t care how many copies sold, I just wanted someone, anyone, to read my work.

I am so glad that I did.

I had my detractors too. My family told me it was a pipe dream. My friends were kind about it but the look in their eyes said that I should put it away. The point is this, if you love to write, then write. Don’t concern yourself with the worry about if you’re good enough or that if some traditional publisher doesn’t sign you then you must not be any good. That’s just a bunch of hogwash. don’t seek validation through somebody else’s eyes, seek it only through your heart and your passion for writing. Don’t self publish with lofty expectations, you’ll only be disappointed. Do it for the love you have of writing. Do it for the sake of finally accomplishing something that means the world to you. Do it for yourself.

Don’t go into it thinking that you’re going to be the next Meg Cabot or something. Do it because you want to be the first you. If you sit around and wait for somebody else’s approval, you might find yourself waiting for a very long time. Sometimes, you just need to take the bull by the horn. And don’t think that just because you self publish a book that you won’t be able to get that traditional book deal. It’s still possible. I have been contacted by a traditional publisher not too long ago and we talked. I decided that I like having full control of my work right now. I am having fun with my writing.

I was also contacted by an independent film director who was interested in making my short story, “Time Of No Reply” into a movie. My agent and I met with this producer in New York back in the Spring of 2011. The deal fell through because they decided on a different story but it was cool that my story was even considered. The point is, don’t always wait for others to open your doors for you, sometimes, you need to open your own doors.

If you’re an aspiring author and wondering if you’re ready to be published or if you should go the independent route, at least take a look at what bookbaby has to offer. Sure, you’re gonna have to pay a fee. I pay 99 dollars for them to convert my word.doc into mobi and PDF format. (They send me a copy of each upon request) They also distribute the book to nine different E-book retailers which includes, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Apple Store, Sony Reader, Kobo, and Copia. I also pay 19 dollars for them to assign my book an ISBN. (International Standard Book Number) to which all published works have to identify them in the Library Of Congress.

They also offer cover designs for a fee if you so like. That cost ranges from 99 dollars to 199 dollars. You don’t have to use their design team if you don’t want to. Then, to keep your book available on all these book E-book sites, you pay them 19 dollars a year per book you have published with them. That’s it! They take no percentage of sales. You can set your own price and everything. With Bookbaby, you have full control and retain all rights to your work.

Give them a look. I think you will like what you see. Call them up on their toll free number located on their website, they will answer any and all of your questions. Just do yourself a favor, don’t wait for some one else to tell you that you’re good enough or ready to be published, tell yourself you are! Because more likely the case, if you want it bad enough, then you will be ready. You are ready!

Just saying.

http://www.bookbaby.com/ 

2 comments:

  1. Wow - thanks so much for the kind words. I'm particularly struck by your message not to "hang your hopes on some traditional publshing company." You're absolutely correct; even if you decide to go the route of tradional publishing, releasing it yourself is a great way to build your platform first and to test-market your work. (Plenty of big titles first started as having been self-published.)

    Feel free to write us if you need more info, and we have a blog (http://blog.bookbaby.com) and YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/bookbaby) with tips, advice, and interviews. Cheers.

    Brian Felsen
    President, BookBaby | CD Baby | HostBaby

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  2. No problem, Mr. Felsen. But I meant it. Bookbaby opened the doors for my publishing dreams to come true. Now, I just want to let everyone know that they can do it too!

    One thing I forgot to mention in my post is, payment plans. Sure, Bookbaby is no different from other companies, they too offer credit card, debit card, paypal options, however, I don't use those things, instead, they let me send a personal check. Had it not been for that, I probably wouldn't have gotten published.

    You would be surprised at how just the smallest things can make a difference.

    But seriously, young authors, pay Bookbaby a visit. Give them a call, whatever it takes for you to take that first step in getting published. The feeling to get in return is amazing.

    I will be posting their youtube video links in the future. Watch them, and learn how like myself, you can do it to. All it takes is believing in yourself. And yes, it still takes hard work on your part. But Bookbaby will help you every step of the way. Their customer service is awesome and friendly. For as long as I self publish, I will use Bookbaby.

    Just give them a try. You won't regret it.

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