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Soraya Lane talks on Self-Publishing and a Giveaway!

We have author Soraya Lane and she has a giveaway as well!
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So over to Soraya now...

Self-publishing – is it for you?

 

Many authors or pre-published authors are now considering self publishing as a serious career decision, despite the fact that only a few short years ago it was considered an almost cringe-worthy option. Back then, it was something a writer would do only if they couldn’t sell their manuscript to a publisher. Now, it’s a great option for even the most established of authors. As a hybrid author – writing for a publisher in addition to self publishing new books on amazon – I like to think that I have a good view of both sides of the fence.

            If you’re thinking about self publishing, it’s time you started to do some serious research. Authors like Gemma Halliday or Maya Banks have made the process look easy, and while it isn’t difficult there is a lot to learn. Successful self published authors invest in a good quality cover that looks as fantastic as any traditionally published book, and they also pay reputable content and copy editors to work on their manuscripts with them. Add to that a good formatter and a few paid adverts, and you can see that producing a quality book isn’t as simple as writing the thing and loading it on the internet.

            I’ve had some great experiences self publishing over the past six months, but I can honestly say that I’ve followed the advice of successful indie authors to the letter. Right now I’m only available on Amazon, to take advantage of KDP Select, and I faithfully list every new book for free for a few days in a row, in an effort to rise through the sales rankings.

            I personally enjoy writing for my publisher in addition to indie publishing, and






I’m fortunate to have a great agent working with me on most of my self publishing ventures. But my advice is this: self publishing is a fantastic and often lucrative option, but following proven patterns from successful authors, and investing money into covers and editing, is absolutely essential.


            I’d love to know your thoughts on self publishing. Is it something you would do? Or have you already done so, and what was your experience like?

            I will be giving away a kindle edition of my latest release, Montana Reunion, so please do leave a comment. Also, keep an eye out for the following books in my Montana series – Montana Homecoming (April), Montana Legacy (August) and Montana Christmas (December).

(Please click through the Montana Reunion, now for a pleasant surprise! Yes, it's FREE for a limited time!)

37 comments:

  1. Hi, Soraya,
    I've found both traditional and self-publishing to be viable options. As you noted, it's important to do things just right when taking the self-pubbing route.

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    1. Hi JL!

      Congrats on all YOUR endeavours! I know you went traditional and self pubbing way! And well done you!

      Thanks for dropping by and for your comment!

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    2. I agree - very hard work but incredibly fulfilling!

      Soraya

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  2. I have an agent for one YA series, and I self publish another.

    I find it very fulfilling. It is hard work, but that makes the success even more gratifying. I would thoroughly recommend to any writer that they follow all avenues open to them.

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    1. Well said, Donna!

      Thanks for dropping by!

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  3. Very interesting post. I'm new to self publishing - it's an experience I've enjoyed so far.

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    1. Hi Suzanne!

      All the best! And wishing you many success!

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    2. My problem is checking my sales rankings constantly - I get a little too obsessive!

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  4. This was very interesting. I am not a writer, but I have friends who have gone the self publishing route and have been very satisfied. As a reader, it wouldn't bother me at all if a book was self published.

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    1. Hi Shelley!

      Same here. As a reader I don't mind reading self published books, but with an editor's eyes, I would say, every writer should have their ms checked, double checked, proof-read then self publish it.

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    2. Hi Shelly. I think one of the great things about self publishing is that readers don't have to wait as long to read the sequel to a book they like - we can often get subsequent books up and ready for sale much faster than a traditional publisher!

      Soraya

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  5. Thanks for the interesting post Soraya. Hi Nas!
    So many jump into the self publishing route without enough attention to detail. I dutifully read all the self published novels/novellas my indie friends publish, but I can't help reading with my editor's eye and cringing at the typos/grammar/punctuation mistakes. How many editors does it take to polish a traditionally-published work? Far be it from me as a writer to expect I can do it all myself!! But I think so many writers are rushing it, thinking it's all going to disappear. The world doesn't need badly-edited books!!

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    1. I agree. At a traditional publishing house, there are so many sets of eyes looking over each manuscript pre-publishing. I'm actually going to find a third person to read all my manuscripts before they're published now, as even with a fantastic editor reading my work multiple times before publishing, little mistakes still slip through sometimes.

      Soraya

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  6. Hi Denise!

    I agree with you wholeheartedly! I get thrown out of a story pretty fast if a book is badly edited.

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  7. Great insight into the world of self-publishing, Soraya, and hasn't it changed over the last x number of years. Many years ago it was ridiculed and people looked down their noses at self-pubbed authors. Now it's become a viable alternative for many.

    I wholeheartedly agree with Soraya on the topic of covers. Presumably, the self-publishing author wants to be taken seriously. It's important to project a professional image and part of that is to have a professional cover. The old adage *You can't judge a book by its cover* is true—you don't know what's inside until you've read it. Yet we do look at the cover of a book and it often helps make up our mind to buy it.

    As an editor myself, I have to agree with Nas (who works as a consultant for me)and Denise. You'll find that most successful self-published authors have had their manuscript professionally edited. For some readers, it won't matter so much, but for many it's enough to throw you out of the story.

    Great blog! Thanks for having Soraya as your special guest, Nas.

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    1. Hi Serena. It's scary how many little mistakes can slip through even with a great editor, so I think it's fantastic that you use a consultant as an extra pair of eyes too!

      And I agree about book covers- we definitely make a judgement call as readers about a book as soon as we see the cover, so it has to look good!

      Soraya

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  8. I plan to self publish next year, but I also plan to hire a quality cover designer (I want a great cover, not a yawn-worthy one), editor, and copy editor. If I'm going to do this, I'm going to do it right. I've read some great SP books, and some that did really well, but the copy editing was clearly non-existent.

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    1. I think we have to treat this as a business, and that means making an investment into those things, even if it's scary to spend so much money at the time! Good luck, I look forward to reading your book :)

      Soraya

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  9. Interesting post, Soraya. It's great to have options. Going for both self-publishing and traditional publishing allows authors to have their eggs in more than one basket. Not a bad thing, these days :)

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    1. Yep, I love having eggs in more than one basket!

      Soraya

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  10. I've read some great self-published books. They've truly changed over the years since many authors do it right with cover design and hiring an editor.

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  11. I've had great luck with self-publishing, but you are absolutely right - you have to have a great product, so expect to invest a little money to hire editors and cover designers.

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    1. I think it's been very lucrative for many authors - long may it last!

      Soraya

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  12. Self-publishing definitely isn't easy, but it can be rewarding. I have self-pubbed some of my shorter works (novellas and the like), but I would like a blended career with both self-pubbed and publisher-published works.

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  13. Great article, Soraya! I'm considering self-publishing this year, but will keep subbing stories to traditional publishers too.

    I'm sad that Montana Reunion isn't free on Amazon UK.

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    1. Hi Autumn. It was free there! I had it free on all amazon outlets - 1300 free copies were given away on the UK site! It's now £1.99 on amazon.uk.

      I think you're wise to still submit to traditional publishers, because it's great to have the flexibility of self pubbing and having a publisher.

      Soraya

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  14. Hi Autumn. It was free there! I had it free on all amazon outlets - 1300 free copies were given away on the UK site! It's now £1.99 on amazon.uk.

    I think you're wise to still submit to traditional publishers, because it's great to have the flexibility of self pubbing and having a publisher.

    Soraya

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  15. This is good to know. I do plan to self-pub as well as trad pub. Problem I see with most books is the covers. They look unprofessional and have poor graphics. I believe covers should be of the highest quality possible especially for self-pubbers, no matter how great the story is.

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    1. My #1 pet hate is bad graphics & fonts - it makes it so obvious that a book is self published.

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  16. I agree with PK Hrezo. The covers often let self-publishing authors down. I LOVE the cover of Montana Reunion.

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    1. Thanks! I'm really in love with this cover too :)

      Soraya

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  17. Food for thought. SElf publishing does take time and money, but if you love what you're doing, why not? I also agree that you really have to put your best work forward--so paying for an awesome book cover and editing services is a must when self-publishing.

    Nutschell
    www.thewritingnut.com

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    1. I must say that I'm starting to realize how much work my editor at Harlequin does!

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  18. I'm looking to go the self-publishing route soon and agree that absolute professionalism is a must. I'm lucky enough to be professionally trained in editing and proofreading, so I hope it's not too presumptuous to say I think I do a good job of editing myself (although I would still have another pair of eyes run over it). I would definitely hire a cover designer, though, as my artistic skills are zero!

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  19. That's great that you're a trained editor! Good luck with your self publishing.

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