Becoming an author happens once in a lifetime. As soon as you publish your first book, you forevermore become an author. And regardless of how many additional books you write, that label never changes. The interesting thing is that you get the same designation whether you had your book published by one of the industry giants like Penguin or Random House, or if you self-published it. And since the process of self-publishing is a lot easier than getting one of the industry giants to accept your book proposal, I suggest doing your first one yourself.
One of the tricks to this process is to register a fictitious business name that sounds like a publishing company and then uses that name as the copyright holder for your book. You’re still publishing your own book but it looks like you used a real publishing company, adding credibility to the finished product. I would think of a regal-sounding name and use that. The exercise will cost you about $50 but it will add tremendously to the final piece.
There actually are thousands of smaller independent publishing companies and no one in the world knows them all. The reason for saying that is that your fictitious business name doesn’t need to be a recognized name like Penguin or McGraw Hill. It can be a different name that nobody has ever heard of before. The important thing is that the book appears to have been published by a legitimate publishing company and they own the copyright.
The obvious advantage of self-publishing your own book is that nobody has to approve the effort. With any other publishing house, you have to send in a proposal and have someone else say yes or no. With self-publishing, you have complete discretion over your own work. The downside is that you may end up publishing a poorly written or poorly edited piece. But the upside is that nobody can say no to you.
You’ll also make more money on each individual book when you self-publish. If you use a traditional publisher, you might only make a dollar or less on each book sold. The rest goes to the various contributors to the process, the actual printing costs, and retail distribution. With self-publishing, the only contributor is you and you end up with a much larger share of the sale price as a result.
It’s worth noting that the majority of books being published today are self-published. It’s also worth noting most of these books sell fewer than 30 copies each. Thankfully, printing technology has taken some huge leaps forward in recent years and you can order your books one at a time, making the upfront costs of an initial print run a thing of the past. Nevertheless, you’ll benefit far more if you sell a lot of copies.
Of course, the marketing of your book is your own responsibility and Tactical Execution provides a lot of implementation solutions that can help you get the word out and generate interest. Solutions range from offline strategies like workshops and press releases to online strategies like article marketing and social bookmarking. Visit the website to access all the free resources available there.