How To: Self-Publish
By Leah Tyme
Volume 1 Issue 8
June 8, 2021
Original infographic by Shinedip Kundlas (click to enlarge)
Before anything, choose a pen name
Any young and aspiring writer should use an alias when publishing their first book to save some trouble later on. Whether your book becomes world-renowned, or it bombs in the first week it’s out, your real name will be forever attached to it. Everything you do from that point forward will be compared to your novel, and if your book doesn’t do very well, it could bring down your chances for opportunities in the future.
When choosing your pen name, choose something that makes you sound like a real person. It may be tempting to choose something fantastical, but very few people will be enticed to read a book by “Maximus the Dragon Master”. Choose a shortened version of your name or mix together the names of friends and family, and you’ll find the name to publish your masterpiece under!
Now, write your book
Okay, so now you know what name you’re going to publish under, you need to write something to publish! Figure out what story you’re going to make whether it be an autobiography, a dramatic retelling of a dream you’ve had, or even just a poem. Make sure that you spend as much time as you need to really develop and explore the topics and themes that you’re writing about but don't forget to set deadlines for yourself as to not procrastinate. Once you have a final draft, make sure you go back and edit what you have! No one wants to read a book full of typos, and you won’t be happy with a novel full of mistakes.
Get an external editor (aka a friend)
Now, while editing and polishing up your work can be good and beneficial for you, if you keep scrutinizing your work you might end up rewriting the whole thing! Speaking from personal experience, don’t spend too much time editing and changing your draft. Get an editor to do that instead! It doesn’t matter if you hire a professional or if you send a friend your manuscript. Most people will know if something doesn’t flow quite right and will catch a plot hole better than you ever will. Peer review is one of the best tools that you can use, and I’m sure that your friends and family will be happy to read your work!
Time to publish
Now it’s time to publish your book. You can use Barnes & Noble Press or Kindle Direct Publishing to upload your completed book and use the platforms to monitor sales and popularity. KDP allows you to publish via eBook or paperback, and Press makes it easy to track your revenue.
Marketing is everything
Seeing as how you’re not going through a publishing firm to get your book out there, you’re going to have to promote your book yourself. Luckily, it’s the 21st century, and you can advertise anything through social media. A good strategy would be to make pages for your book on Twitter or Instagram, and you can even make ads on these websites to spread your book even more.
And you’re an author
You’ve done it! You wrote your book, you chose your pen name, you published it online, and you made sure that everyone and their mother knew what it was and where to find it. You’re officially a self-published author!