Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Number 758, ReDeux!

Time now to blow off the cobwebs of a seldom used blog tag, thus challenging myself to write something completely relevant, or at the very least, somewhat intelligent.

Today, will we updating funky post number 758. Funky post number 758 covered the fascinating world of commercial publishing guidelines. This time around, we'll cover the fascinating world of self-publishing guideline.

Now, contrary to popular opinion, there are guidelines for self-publishing.

Almost everyone is familiar with self-publishing and everyone is familiar with the basic guideline of making sure your manuscript is relatively up to snuff, has no errors, been vetted by at least two people and actually makes sense. And usually that is all you need to self publish a manuscript, because quite frankly, most self-publishing outfits don't require much else.

However, two of your major self-publishing outfits actually require you to do a helluva lot more to your manuscript in order to make it a viable piece of reading material, because quite frankly, they actually want you to succeed.

Both CreateSpace (self publishing arm of Amazon) and Smashwords have guidebooks and easy-to-use services ranging from free to spending a bit of money in order to get your book as polished as it needs to be so that you can maximize your sales.

In fact, Smashwords goes one step further and states that if you don't follow their guidelines, you won't be able to publish your e-book there. Now, their user guide (of which I downloaded a free copy) is the equivalent of one of those "For Dummies" books, and its written so clear and concise that even a techno Luddite like myself can understand, apply and take the necessary steps so that I can publish a small short story trilogy next month (hopefully).

So my friends, if writing is definitely your bag and you don't really want to go the commercial route (although I strongly suggest starting out that way so that you can get some much needed exposure), self-publishing is the way to go. But, I strongly suggest that you stick to using either Smashwords or CreateSpace for the simple reason that the outlay of funds can be minimal-to-zero. Lulu can cost you a ton o'money simply because they're affiliated with ASI (I believe, although I could be wrong on this point), so I really can't recommend them just on that point alone.


  1. I'm gonna do a piece on Create Space later this summer.

  2. I am still waiting for someone to prep all my old cartoons for a book. haha

  3. I like that term Techno Luddite. :)

  4. Charles: Looking forward to that. My publisher uses CreateSpace for their print books.

    Bearman: Blogger used to have a thing where you could spend a hundred plus to make a small book of some of your favorite blog posts.

    Lynn: I'm a Luddite in a lot of things theses days, so I thought I would differentiate. :D

  5. This is good info, thanks...I need to check out Create Space.

  6. We tried going the commercial route but kept getting jerked around by contracts that fell through or agents that turned out to be flakes. So we're definitely glad we self published, and if you build up enough of a following (like we did with our blog) you can do better than you would have being traditionally published as a first time author.

  7. B&B: You do have some valid points. However, I still recommend that if you're going to go the self-publishing route, you need to have a solid body of work that people can sample from. Even a blog like yours would qualify as a solid body of work.

    I'm pretty happy with my current publisher, but at the moment, I don't have a full length novel in me. My speed has always been novellas and that's what I've been most comfortable with.


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