The Advantages of Self Publishing: Dreams Become Reality- Nikki Jefford

Written By: Kellie - Apr• 19•12

Nikki Jefford is a third generation Alaskan who found paradise in the not-so-tropical San Juan Islands where she is, once more, neighbors with Canada. She is a Westie mama married to a Frenchman.

Her book Entangled is about twin witches trying to blend in with “normals”. When one dies and a resurrection spell goes amuck, they end up having to share a body and so begins the battle between good and evil and who will figure out an extraction spell first.

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I spent over a decade attending writing conferences, pitching to agents and editors, hearing “almost, but not quite”, even having a story dropped after the editor who liked it got pregnant and left the publication. I always planned to go the traditional route of publishing till a few months ago.

When you go indie, dreams become reality. I don’t write for myself, I write to entertain readers and there’s no greater thrill for me then getting my work into a reader’s hands.

Full Control

You get to choose everything from cover art, title, publication date, and price.

You’re able to hire who you want for editing, cover art, and formatting, or do it yourself.

Profits

Let’s talk financials! On amazon you make 35% royalties on anything under $2.99, 75% on anything above. Compare that to 17% or lower once you involve agents and publishing houses.

It’s All Up to You Anyway

I’m friends with two traditionally published authors: one a successful adventure/crime writer, the other a literary genius who takes 10 years to write each novel. They both have to do all their own promoting and even editing. The adventure writer is with a huge publishing house and they didn’t contribute a dime to promoting his book. They also vetoed his cool book title and stuck him with something unbelievably lame. He even had to pay out of pocket to include photos in the book. And he gets the lowest cut?! This doesn’t make sense to me.

Before You Publish

But before you go tossing a book onto amazon, there are a few important things to keep in mind.

-The book needs to be GOOD. I wrote six novels before I self-published my seventh. Embarrassingly enough, if the indie craze had started sooner I might have put up an earlier novel and that would have been utterly HUMILIATING in the end. It takes many years of reading and writing to recognize what’s hot and what’s not.

Hire professionals! Or do a professional job. Copy editor. Cover designer. Formatting. Unless you have design skills, hire someone with a professional portfolio to put together your cover. You will still need to direct them. I spent a full week studying book covers in my genre and scouring royalty free stock sites. Formatting is a pain, but can be self-taught. I’m lucky enough to have a techy husband. Copyediting cannot be done by the author. Period. I learned the hard way that you need to hire not one, but TWO editors. An entire novel is a lot of ground to cover and even a professional is going to miss a few things. That’s where the second editor comes in.

That said, there is nothing so thrilling then submitting your novel to online book sellers and seeing your title go live!

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