I’m going to do it. I’m going to take the plunge and self-publish my Roselle Girls series.
I had hoped it wouldn’t come to that—I liked having a traditional publisher. But when Artemis Publishing closed down last year and they returned my rights to Catching a Pixie, I’d had it with searching for yet another publisher.
So, this post will follow my journey to becoming an indie author. If anyone out there is thinking of starting down this path, perhaps it will serve as a guide…or maybe a cautionary tale…who knows.
Dipping my Toe
First step was chatting up my writer friend, Lynn Kellan who has been publishing her own romance novels since 2016. She graciously talked me through overarching steps I’d need to take, which did more to dissuade me than anything else:
- Find a cover artist
- Get an editor
- Decide on a book formatting app
- Register for ISBN numbers
- Pick your distribution channels – Amazon, Ingram, Booksmash, Nook, print, ebook
- And once that’s all sorted out and paid for, then come up with a marketing strategy – Facebook ads, Instagram posts, newsletters, book giveaways, the list goes on.
No way, I decided. It was all too much.
But the universe had other plans.
One of the authors I follow on Instagram (@Mindymckinleyromance) posted she was starting a cover design company and would provide a design for the first few people who contacted her–for only $25! They usually cost a few hundred dollars!
I figured why not see what she comes up with. A month later, I had the most perfect cover for the second book in my Roselle Girls series, Counting on Him. I can’t not put this out, right??
But since it’s the second book, I begged her to design a cover for Book 1, Catching a Pixie. Which she did, creating another stunner.
If you want to learn more, visit her website: https://www.bananabreaddesigns.com/
Wading In – Calf-Deep
Since Catching a Pixie has already been edited by my publisher, I was able to skip that step. So next up was finding a book formatting app. Lynn had suggested Vellum, but it’s Mac only and I’m a PC gal. I searched the interweb for suggestions and found that Atticus.oi is reasonably priced, easy to use and produces quality formatting.
For the uninitiated, book formatting allows you to adjust the type font, page margins, chapter headings and section dividers. Atticus also gives you a template for your title page, copyright page, a dedication, and placeholders for your author page, book blurb and “Also by”, a nice feature to promote your back catalog.
I can even put a cute little pixie graphic on each chapter header page.
Knee-High and the Tide is Dragging Me Deeper
I’d created a website when my first book, Dare to Love, was published. Then when Catching a Pixie came out, I reformatted it to showcase two books. Now that I’m going to launch Pixie as a multi-book series, I’m working on refreshing it once again. So, that’s where I am now.
WordPress has a lot of new features, so I’m playing around with design options. It looks terrible now, so don’t go visit it until I tell you to. Then, I’ll welcome any feedback, corrections or compliments.
Stay tuned for my next post. Hopefully, I’m not getting in over my head.