10 Signs That You Are Not Ready To Self-Publish

Editors Note: This post has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness. Click here to read the new post.

Introduction

Are you really ready – not just your manuscript, but you – to self-publish? Here is a list of the most important things you must consider before getting into self-publishing. So, before you ignore the traditional publishing process, make sure you have the stamina to become your own publisher. Self-publishing is not a short cut to seeing yourself in print, or to success. If anything, it’s more arduous and time-consuming than writing the book itself.

Thank you to Elizabeth Spann Craig for sharing and linking to my post "10 Signs That You’re Not Ready To Self-Publish."

Thank you to Elizabeth Spann Craig for sharing and linking to my post “10 Signs That You’re Not Ready To Self-Publish.”

1. You Believe That “If I Write It They Will Come”
Get serious. This thinking might work for a big-time author like Stephen King, but not for you and me. The rest of us need to work really long hours to make our books sell. We need to become experts in marketing, sales, SEO, blogging, and in all social media. We need to spend every minute possible sitting at our desk and writing. And the writing better be good.

2. You Haven’t Researched Your Market
You better know everything there is to know about your market and your audience. Who will be reading and buying your books? What are the hottest topics and trends in your market? What books are actually selling in your industry (on Amazon)? By writing and publishing you are putting yourself out there as an expert in your niche. Your audience expects you to sound and act like an expert. If they get the slightest hint that you are not the expert that you are telling them that you are, you will lose your audience and they won’t come back to read or buy your books.

Thank you to Eldon Sarte of WordPreneur.com for featuring this article on his website.

Thank you to Eldon Sarte of WordPreneur.com for featuring this article on his website.

3. You Don’t Understand What Actually Goes Into A Salable Book
This one might seem too obvious, but to some of us it isn’t. Too many books are getting published that barely look like a finished book. I have seen one too many books missing the table of contents, page numbers, index, isbn, etc., and even the author’s name! If you want to be taken seriously as a publisher and author, and gain your audience’s respect, you must create a professional-looking product. Complete in every way that a reader expects a book to be.

 
 

4. You Haven’t Researched Your Niche
Read everything that you can get your hands on about your niche. You should know who the big experts are, and have read their books. Read the publications and blogs of those writers and groups within your niche. It is important to remember that in today’s terms, niche now means “micro-niche”. As a self-publisher you will most likely find the biggest success by narrowly defining your market niche. It is much easier to become an expert in a very specific market where it is much less crowded with big well-established writers and publishers.

Self Publishing Review - Not Ready To Publish

Self Publishing Review – Not Ready To Publish

5. You Hope To Get Famous From Self-Publishing
This is possible, but not likely. Fame comes with a lot of hard work and lots of luck. Therefore, it cannot be your only motive for self-publishing your books. Instead, concentrate on building and improving your reputation within your market. Earning the respect of your peers and your audience is a very achievable and respectable goal – and will help improve your book sales.

 
 
 

Thank you to Patricia Marshall for featuring this article on her website The Creative Publisher

Thank you to Patricia Marshall for featuring this article on her website The Creative Publisher

6. You Believe That Book Sales And Financial Profits Are What Self-Publishing Is All About
There is no guarantee that you will have financial success by publishing your books. The majority of authors make little or no money from their books. But if you really understand your market, and become an expert in your niche, build a great book, interact and communicate with your audience, and devote your life to marketing yourself and your books, you will have book sales. Those books will then help bring you new customers, and build your reputation within your industry.

Publetariat - April Hamilton's website for people who publish

Publetariat – April Hamilton’s website for people who publish

7. You Haven’t Started Marketing Your Book
You must start marketing well in advance of releasing your book. Probably the easiest and most productive way to get started is to build your own blog where you write about your niche. In addition, blogging is a great way to prove to yourself, and to your audience, that you are serious about your niche.

8. You Have No Marketing Plan
If you haven’t figured this out already, publishing is 90% marketing, 10% writing. If you love the subject you write about, and love to share the information with others, then this will not worry you. If you expect to make your book a critical and financial success, you will look at marketing your book as a welcomed challenge. Marketing is all about understanding your audience – the very people that you want to share information with and help them improve their situation. Therefore, you must develop a guideline, or plan, of what you are going to do to market your book.

Authors.com - 10 Signs Not Ready To Self Publish

Authors.com – 10 Signs Not Ready To Self Publish

9. You’re Impatient
Publishing is not for the impatient. Everything in book publishing takes a while to complete. And when you are self-publishing, you are the one that needs to do all of the work – and also maintain your blog, job, family, and home. So it might take you twelve to twenty-four months before you see your book in print. And then it might take another two years to show any profits from that book. So you better choose your niche very carefully.

 
 
 
 

Thank you to writer Gene Lempp for featuring this article on his website

Thank you to writer Gene Lempp for featuring this article on his website

10. You Jump In Before Understanding The Business Side Of Self-Publishing
Yes, self-publishing is a business. It will force you to become a true capitalist, whether you like it or not. This is a business that will take up a lot of your time and money, with no guarantee of a financial return. You will need to force yourself to learn all aspects of building and managing a company. But the more effort you put into it, the more you will get out of it.

Conclusion
Now that you have read these ten things, and understand each one of them, and you still believe that you are up to the challenge, then you are ready to start becoming a successful self-publisher. And by truly understanding these things, you will not be afraid of the time-consuming hard work that is involved in producing a quality self-published book. Then stop procrastinating, and get started. Because now is your chance to achieve some of your personal and financial goals by taking advantage of the self-publishing revolution that is happening now.

Publetariat Omnibus Ebook that features some of my articles

Publetariat Omnibus Ebook that features some of my articles


This article is also posted on LinkedIn.com
This article is also featured in Joel Friedlander’s online publication Carnival of the Indies – Issue #26
This article is also featured on SelfPublishingReview.com
This article is also posted on EzineArticles.com
This article is also posted on SPANnet.org
This article is also posted on Publetariat.com
This article is also posted on Authors.com
This article is also in the Publetariat Omnibus book on Amazon
This article is also posted on Business2Community.com
This article is also featured on Eldon Sarte’s website WordPreneur.com
This article is also featured on Gene Lempp’s website for writers
This article is also featured on Patricia Marshall’s website The Creative Publisher
This article is also posted on WritersCafe.org
This article is also featured on Yesenia Vargas’s website for writers

Thank you to Joel Friedlander for linking to this article from his website Carnival Of The Indies #26

Thank you to Joel Friedlander for linking to this article from his website Carnival Of The Indies #26

Thank you for reading this. I hope you found it helpful. Please share it.

Hashtags: #selfpublishing #bookmarketing

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About Joseph C. Kunz, Jr.

Author, educator, business owner, husband, and father of twins. Kunz is also a digital-media junkie fascinated by the intersection of media, design, education, and technology. Kunz is the founder of Dickson Keanaghan, LLC, a medical training and publishing company near New York City. @jckunzjr
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8 Responses to 10 Signs That You Are Not Ready To Self-Publish

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