This is an exciting time for authors. Self-publishing tools are more widely available now than ever before. But with great power, comes great responsibility. As authors, it is essential to adhere to professional guidelines and produce the best product. Guest speaker and Pensters Vice President, John O’Melveny Woods, spoke at length about the opportunities of today’s self-publishing world.
Turning Out Quality
With the technology available, there is no reason a self-published book can’t appear just as “real” as any traditionally published work. The first step to achieving this goal is to hire professional proofers. John advised having a male and a female proof the manuscript. Each will pick up on different things while providing additional perspectives.
Next, have a professional cover designed. With an overwhelming percentage of today’s book sales taking place online, Woods stressed the importance of the cover in attracting potential readers. “No matter what cover you are going to use, shrink it down to the size of an Amazon thumbnail. If you can’t read the title and the author’s name, get rid of it.”
Do the Homework
As you prepare to publish, make sure to do some research online. Search your book title on Google and Amazon. Are there numerous other books that might make it difficult for readers to find yours? The title may need to be adapted or changed.
Also, check with a domain service regarding the availability of your author name and book name. If you find johndoe.com is not available, try johndoeauthor.com. The same applies to a book title. If myjourney.com is taken, check for myjourneybook.com.
One other critical step is to protect your intellectual property. John states that if your book is already written, make sure to visit www.copyright.gov and begin the process of copyrighting your work. The site offers directions to guide authors through the process.
Submitted by: Jessica Trippe