Monday, January 2, 2012

674 reasons why I love Vampire Diaries.

Hello Vampire Diaries fans!

Here's a post on self-publishing.


So I got a Kindle for Christmas...

Yes, that's ungrateful.

I've been on the fence about ereaders in general, because I don't get why you have to pay a bunch of money just so you can read a book. God gave me eyes for free.

Is that ungrateful?

My husband got me a kindle fire, and I'm in love with it. The first thing I did was download all those classics I've always wanted to get around to reading but haven't. And then after reading a few first pages, I realized why I haven't got around to reading them, and then got around to not read them for a little longer.

Then I tried the county library, and found out my elibrary is kinda lame. I didn't realize this before we bought the Kindle, but the elibrary hasn't caught up to the rocks and mortar library in terms of books available.

After that, I searched the Kindle library for a free good library book, and realized that all of the good books available for free, I've already read. So then, not one hour after opening the package, I started looking at self-published books.

This probably proves that I'm cheap.
 I'm not cheap, I just like to show people
the insides of my pockets.

 I think I'm just feeling guilty. I'm a mom. I don't get things that cost two hundred dollars. Think of all the baby clothes my son could blow out on for that kind of money.... But I digress.

Because I was still hurting from the cost of the kindle, three dollars seems like a lot of money for me to buy a book. I read twelve books last month. If I were to pay full price for an ebook, 9.99. I'd be paying 119.88  a month.

But if I don't buy any books, then I just wasted two hundred dollars. I can spend three dollars so I don't waste two hundred.

That'll be five hundred dollars.

That's why I think self-publishing your book to an ebook is a money making idea. I have a reader, so I want books on my reader, especially free/cheap/good books.

I've since downloaded a couple of self-published ebooks, and this is what I've learned.

1. Make your sample pages shine. In fact, make that whole book shine. Don't be the reason self-published books get a bad name. Edit. Proofread. Send it to a friend. Proofread again. And then, once more for good measure, proofread it again. Don't be afraid to send it to a professional, if you can't make it perfect on your own. Know your limits.

2. If you are offering more than one book, especially if you have a series of books available, offer your first book for free. Yes, you might lose a couple of bucks, but you will gain more than a couple of readers. After all, if you can't hook a reader with an entire novel, then you aren't ready to be paid yet anyway. Hook them with your first novel, and then make them pay for the others.

3. Cheap is king. Trying to offer your self-published book for too much money is the first thing that will leave your book ignored. Doesn't matter the quality. Doesn't matter that this book is brilliant. Being published by a traditional publisher carries with it a brand label, and self-publishing is like selling an off brand. I saw a few self-published books selling, (or not selling) for twenty dollars. Seriously? I'm not going to spend 10 bucks on a good book I know I'm going to love. I'm not going to risk my money on some book I've never met before.

Why does that make me feel like showing off the inside's of my pockets...?

4. No one is going to buy your book if they can't find it. Make it available. Market it. If you figure out how to market it successfully, leave a comment below. I don't know how.

5.The cover counts. Make a great cover, or if you can't do that, pay someone to make you a great cover. Every single self-published book I've downloaded so far has had an AWESOME cover. Not just good. Not just good enough. AWESOME.  Don't stop until you've reached the awesome.

Basically what I'm saying, is try to make people wonder if your self published book was published by a traditional publishers. Traditional publishers pay for editors to polish the book. They pay marketers to place your books on the lists...somehow. They pay designers to design great covers.

And they've made a ton of money, and a ton of brilliant books.
Do not try this with an ereader.

There are worse things to emulate.


  1. You are a goofball! I'm sure there's a Vampire Diaries fan-fic group that will be pleased as punch to find out about self-publishing.

    I've never watched the show, but I am interested in self-publishing, and I think you made some great points. Thanks!

  2. Oh man, I just got a Kindle - well, it's still in the mail - but the first thing I did was browse all the free classics I always wanted to read... and then decide I can wait a little longer. Hahaha.

    Good luck finding awesome, cheap ebooks! I've been browsing everywhere, and found an awesome list of indie books here:

    Now if only my Kindle would hurry up and get here! My kids got clothes for Christmas, so I don't need to worry about clothing them this month - only about buying myself some books :D

  3. LOL. Love the title. Last night I was browse cringing over eBook prices on Amazon and I don't even have a Kindle.
    Excellent advice on the self-pub.

  4. Those are the exact things that would attract me to self-published books. :)

  5. Good advice - any time I see a site review a self published book, the very, very first thing they mention is the editing. Not the plot, or the characters - but how many typos it has.

  6. Yes, ebooks are expensive, and they've gotten more so in the last few years - ever since I got my Kindle...

    I LOVE your analogy of self-published being like selling an off brand. That's perfect.

    I've actually read a couple of reasonably good self-published books recently, but always with the thought in the back of my head that they could have been even better with some more editing. I think not being afraid to bring in a professional is good advice.

    Great post, Sheena!


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