This book self-publishing gig sure is a wild ride. I’m loving the steep learning curve that I’m pedalling up, and the business decisions I have to think about and make. I knew nothing about self-publishing when I started this journey a few short months ago. Nothing. Nada. Zip. I know slightly more now, but I am very much the novice, and it doesn’t bother me, because in this space, everything is changing so fast. New technology to learn, new ways of doings things, new boundaries to push. You have to be nimble, but at the same time acknowledge that you can’t know everything, and outsource tasks where you need expertise.
Because I have limited knowledge, I have been reading everything I can about self-publishing. Before Christmas, I stumbled onto a webinar being given as part of a Scrivener tips page I subscribe to on Facebook. The presenter was Kristen Eckstein from The Book Ninja, and I was so impressed by how much knowledge she had and how much information she gave away – for free – I immediately signed up for her Kindle in 30 Challenge Boot Camp (note: this is an affiliate link). Over the course of four weeks, you progress through training videos, starting as a Freshman and finishing as a Senior. I’m in Week 3, and am just about to start my Junior training.
Each week, the curriculum covers Writing, Publishing and Marketing via three half-hour videos plus worksheets plus a Q&A call that covers participants’ questions for that particular week. There is also a Facebook support group, which is very active. The beauty of this training is that it is lifetime. I can access these materials as many times as I like for as long as I like, and I can repeat the Challenge as many times as I need to. There’s a tonne of really cool bonus material that are also included.
As a result of this all awesome training, and taking on board Kristen’s expert advice as a prolific, Kindle publisher and author coach, I am splitting my book* into six parts and it will be offered as a series. The cover has changed considerably since I began this journey, and has morphed from an abstract image (see photo credit below) to one that is more concrete. Each part has its own distinct colour that signals to Kindle readers it’s a part of a series. And there are so many possibilities with this being published as a series.
I’ve tidied up both the front and back matter to reflect how Kindle displays the contents of books in its store. Look Inside, for example, shows the first 20% of your book. If you are all Table of Contents and Acknowledgements and Dedications and Copyright and Introductions and Forewords at the beginning, it’s easy to use your 20% up before potential readers even get to read your writing! Who knew?
I added a subtitle because it’s better for keyword marketing, and it tells readers what the book is about without them having to guess. It’s interesting though. I wanted to split the book into parts when I started this journey, but received advice against it. Ditto the subtitle. I went with the advice, but it turns out my instincts were right on the money in the first place. I just didn’t know why. Now I know. The book is currently with reviewers, who have given me valuable feedback, including the need to split the book. And then it’s off to the Kindle programmer, because, as much as I like doing things myself, I want to make sure the first one is as good a product as it possibly can be.
So, dear reader, barring any unforeseen circumstances (like, I hope I get everything I need to get done actually done before I go to India in early February – I’ll be away for a month), I’m still looking at a February 14 release date at this stage. And as they say in the classics: shit is starting to get real!
(And it’s so much fun!)
*The entire book will be available on Kindle once I have the entire series up on Kindle. It will be titled Love & Other Stuff – All The Stuff.
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If you are interested in the Kindle in 30 Challenge Boot Camp (and I can highly recommend it and I never recommend these sorts things!) please use my affiliate link. That way, I get a bit of a kickback for getting the word out there about how awesome this training is.