The Five E's of Self-Publishing

Self-publishing is tricky business and can easily become a full-time job. The author takes on the role of a business owner almost overnight and juggles a hundred different responsibilities.

So stay cool, collected, and stress-free with the five E's of self-publishing.

Employ someone to create your book cover. Unless you’re a graphic designer, please don’t design your own cover. That’s blunt, but it needs to be said. I once saw a book cover of an alien-unicorn hybrid with a rainbow of pinks, purples, and greens vomited onto the cover with a dozen different unnecessary phrases in a dozen other fonts. It actually hurt my eyes to look at it.  

I could be a millionaire if I published a coffee table book full of ugly book covers. Think of how eccentric that would be. But seriously: get your book cover professionally done. (And don’t be in my coffee table book!) 

Entrust your book to a professional editor. (Yawn, here she goes again.) Okay, okay! I'll keep it short: your book is your pride and joy, and if you throw it out there with errors, people will riot. Riot, I say!

All right, let's move on. 

Embrace social media. It is your best friend. Here’s the deal: you don’t have to be a genius at all platforms—I don't care what anyone says. It’s okay to be really good at one platform. Use Instagram to your advantage. Do you prefer Twitter to Facebook? Are you a Pinterest maniac? Find your social strength and make it stronger.

Look at your platform: where can you connect with your audience the most? If social media confuses you, let's talk

Engage with your audience. Ask them what they liked about your book. Answer their questions or responses on Facebook (and tag them). Retweet a follower. Build your platform by engaging with your loyal followers.

These people have liked your Facebook page because they want to hear what you have to say. 

When you engage on social media, you'll see your stats go up. You'll also love getting to chat with your readers and hear what they think about your book. 

Expand your market. Are sales low? Are you reaching the right audience? Does your personal brand shine through like the moon on a summer night? If not, try marketing your book in other areas.

Do you need to rebrand? Talk to Mike Loomis. Do you need to strategize your blog topics? Then look at your book genre. Is your novel historical fiction? Talk about that era and their typical recipes or attire or gadgets. Is your novel futuristic? Write about advanced technology and how it's changing our world.

You don't have to just write posts about your book—write about other things that center around it. 

Bonus: enjoy the publishing process.