Thursday, January 3, 2013

Publishing Without Worry

Is there really such a thing?

I believe there is. And the truer you are to yourself, the less worry you will have.

Years ago, when I published my first book through a local publisher I worried about everything. Will the cover look right? Will the price of the book be what it needed to be? Would the editing be sufficient? Would I really know how to market when the time came?

So many publishing options...so little time
Photo by: Joe Ross, courtesy of Flickr
Suffice it to say I had more questions than I had answers.

What troubled me the most was how little input I had for my project. Sure, I could suggest a cover idea, but the price would be set at $18 and the editing would be done by someone in-house, someone I didn't know. As for the marketing, I was expected to do most of it. And this was a very scary prospect for someone publishing her first book.

But if I could do it over again...

I would suggest making a list. On this list I'd write down everything I needed in a publishing company. What I wanted.  What I needed.

Would you like to give it a shot? Then get out some paper, right now. Now, write down a list of your concerns. Your desires might include a particular publisher, I particular cover, a particular editor or contract... Take a few minutes, at least 10, and write those things that come to you.

Now, let's take a look.

Do you find that most of your issues concern not knowing how to find a national, local, or print-on-demand publisher? Do you want to choose your own cover or want someone else to do it for you? What about an editor? Do you want to provide your own or do you want to go with an expert within a publishing house? And what if you don't get accepted with the publisher of your choosing?

Photo by Kevin Zollman, courtesy of Flickr
I find that questions like these get us to the gut answers of who we are and what we want. Having our concerns on paper takes much of the worry off our back; what we have instead is a list to help us to our goal.

Honestly, if I'd done such a list in the beginning, I might not have started with a local publisher, and yet, I probably wouldn't be where I am today either. Through that experience I realized that what I really wanted was to have my hands on all of the aspects of publishing, from idea to creation.

Still, as I look back, I can see that when I stuck to my guns I was the happiest. And it didn't matter what anyone else thought about my journey into publishing, what really mattered is what I thought and what I did with it. 
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