Monday, September 16, 2013

Diving into the Self Publishing Pool

I've been working on a cookbook for the past several months. What started out as something for my friends and family is rapidly growing into a much bigger production. I decided to self publish it for many reasons: 1) my friends and family are scattered across the globe, 2) most of them are big eBook fans, and 3) I want to keep the cost as close to “free” as possible. Because a few of them want a print copy, I need to price it at Amazon's minimum to be eligible for their CreateSpace print-on-demand option.

Several of the GRRWG members have had great success lately going this route. As a new author, I am not holding out hopes for large number of sales, but hope to at least get my setup costs covered. ISBN's must be purchased, a publishing company name needs to be selected, I need to develop the book cover, have it edited, get testers to test the recipes and pick a name for it. Lots of work yet to do for what I thought would be a “quick” side project.

The biggest obstacle is simply me being me. An IT geek by trade, I'm always thinking of ways to improve thing, and my recipe list is growing as I keep thinking up recipes to add. My “beta tasters” are growing to hate me as their waistlines have grown since I started down this path. I've selected my most “kid friendly” recipes for this book as I'm a big believer in teaching kids bake and cook simple things for themselves. The one thing I can't really do for this book is the artwork, as I am not an artist or photographer.

I'm still debating about the photos after seeing how much work it may be to get the layout I see in my head to work for an eBook. So for the first edition it may end up with no photos, but I gave myself to the end of the year to get this book out, so I may have to give up a few things to get the first edition out. Plus it's a lot of work to get all the samples ready for a photo shoot, and I'm a horrible procrastinator.

Another thing to consider when self-publishing is which platforms you want to publish on. There'sjust so many: Amazon vs. Nook vs. Smashwords, just to name a few. The decision may end up being a tad easier for me though as Amazon seems to be the one platform that all of my potential readers can get to.

Who knew that self-publishing could get so complicated?  I just wish there were self-publishing life jackets.

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