Michael Pierce! He’ll share his journey to publication. Some snark may be involved!
Self-Publishing in 300 Words or Less
(Self-imposed challenge accepted!)
I’d like to start off with thanking Alex for the opportunity to be a guest blogger. It’s quite a privilege to be here, and frankly, a little intimidating. I self-published my first book, Provex City, a few months ago and this is the Cliffs Notes to what I’ve learned. (This isn’t included in my word count.) Cheater! I'll let it slide...
Congratulations, you’ve decided to self-publish! It’s a life and death decision (for your story) and you made it. Now what? Start by looking at those who’ve come before you, successful authors like J.A. Konrath, Colleen Houck, and Amanda Hocking. Following their examples can save you a few whacks and welts along the way.
I assume you already have a blog firing on all cylinders. Check! Your new bible is The Newbie’s Guide to Publishing and be sure to visit Konrath’s blog of the same title. Then follow his roadmap to self-publishing and you can’t get lost, though some roads may need repaving.
Writing is a solitary process, but getting your writing to the masses takes a highly trained team of professionals. What you will need to start:
· An editor. You may want to throw a proofreader in the mix. Check!
· A cover designer (unless you’re a graphic designer, in which case email me!). Check!
· An e-book formatter. You can do this yourself if you’ve got the patience. I don’t. Check!
· A Print-on-Demand team (CreateSpace). A majority of sales comes from e-books, but a print copy is good for showing off to the family and submitting to book bloggers for reviews. Check!
Headache Saver #1: Have your e-book and print copy become available on or about the same time. My e-book came out a month before my print copy and I was surprised at the confusion it caused. Never again.
The two largest venues for your e-book are Amazon and Smashwords. Smashwords will distribute your freshly formatted e-book to Barnesandnoble.com and the iBookstore. Now your book is available to millions of people worldwide. Holy adjectives and expletives, Batman! Stop shaking; it’s a good thing. Now it’s time to start promoting, which will take me over my promised— Good save!
HERE Enjoy, members of Alex’s Ninja Army and thank you so much for reading. And I’m participating in the Debut Author Blog Hop Giveaway right now with 2 signed copies of Michael Offutt’s Slipstream.
Michael Pierce lives in Southern California with his wife, daughter, and two ultra-protective Chiweenies. Provex City is his debut novel and the first book in the young adult fantasy Lorne Family Vault Series. Visit him at his Blog, on Twitter, and on Goodreads
Donna Shields has a new book out, Secrets of Jenkins Bridge, and to celebrate she is giving away all sorts of cool loot. Congratulations, Donna!
Vic Caswell just launched her freelance illustration business, Sketcher Girl Studios,and she’s celebrating by holding a giveaway of cool stuff. Check out the giveaway on her blog. Congratulations, Vic!
BIG thanks to everyone who participated in the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! Those were some of the best posts I've read yet and I appreciate those of you who visited someone new.
And in case you missed it, Prometheus comes out today! After watching John Carter last night in 3D, Prometheus today, and Madagascar III this weekend, I just might be movied-out. (Who am I kidding? Never!) Reviews to follow on Monday. And I do promise to write this weekend as well.
Following Michael? Self-published a book or thinking about it? (And if you are thinking about it, Vic does covers!) Don’t forget to take Michael up on a free copy of Provex City. And finally, who’s going to the movies this weekend???
Alex, thank you so much for having me as a guest on your blog today! I very much appreciate all your help and support. And awesome progress on CassaStorm. :)
What a great guest post, Michael, and you covered a lot in 300 words! Thanks for pointing out the examples of authors to look to - cool idea. Good luck with the book!
I'm thinking of self-publishing an ebook of short stories soon, so I'm trying to gather as much advice as I can. I'll check out Vic, and Donna. Thanks for the links!
Awfully good Guest Post.
Very cool and helpful guest post Michael Pierce... and useful... what is a ultra-protective Chiweenies?
Alex let us know about that movie... Happy Friday Everyone!
My New Book:
Retro-Zombie: Art and Words
Great guest post with some good tips! Thanks for all the awesome places to check out Mr. Ninja as usual...brilliant! No movies this week-end, but I would love to see all of them!
Very cool cover, Michael. I just snagged a free copy from Amazon. And good advice too. You definitely can't go wrong by following in the footsteps (and the avoiding the mistakes) of those who have already attained the status of seasoned veteran.
Just got my copy of Provex City. Nice post!
Great guest post! I enjoy self-publishing.
You? Movied out? Never.
Great posting, and thanks for the guest posting on self publishing. I was thinking of going to the movies this evening, but my newest little grandson picked 1:30 this am to make his appearance in the world. I think I will probably crash after all of this coffee wears off sometime today
just recently met Michael in one of the blogfests. Great 'Guest Post'. Reaching for the kindle as we speak.
Movies - I only just saw - SW & Huntsman - big yes for the Huntsman, but what is it with that 'girl fight' at the end. Come on are you 'guys' really all into that stuff. Watching women beat the carp out of each other never has been my thing - not even in Jr. High.
Great tips, I think I might go the self-publishing route, but not sure yet. Just downloaded Provex City, thanks!
Great guest post Michael, well done Alex. I have also been watching that bar travel forward on your third book. Are you sure you actually work at your day job??
Thanks for hosting Michael, great tips.
Have a great week-end.
Sweet! Downloading now. :)
Some awesome how to's, Michael! Self publishing has always confused the crap out of me.
That Michael's a funny guy! Love his common sense approach.
That Michael's a funny guy! Love his common sense approach.
I can't lie I didn't think about self-publishing ... I did think about it, a lot, just don't think it's time for me to actually step in that direction YET ;)
Honestly, the team of actors on Prometheus seem great, but I'm not sure I'll like the movie. I didn't like the trailer ...
This is great advice,Michael. And much appreciated too.
Thanks for hosting, Alex!
Well done Michael! Hope you didn't get whacked and welted too much!! Yikes!! Huge congratulations with your book!!! Now off I go to ponder the word "Chiweenies"!
Hi, Michael, I needed your post--thanks much. This is my new line I'm stealing from you and will say on a daily basis because it talks to writers and is funny, "Holy adjectives and expletives."
Congratulations Michael! I am ever so impressed with those who write AND self-publish. I have visions of yanking out huge tufts of hair. Good for you for working your way through both!
Well that post about self-publishing couldn't have come at a better time! Thank you for that! :D
Nice guest post.
And I'm juiced about Prometheous, though I probably won't get to see it in the theatre.
Thanks guys, for all the encouraging comments! Now it's time got me to get to work so I can support my writing habit. :)
Michael, you are welcome!
Nick, he covered it very well.
Jeremy, I want to know as well!
Laura, it will never happen.
Gossip Girl, congratulations!
Faraway, they were wearing too much clothing for the fight. Wait, did I say that out loud?
CM, I do! I blog from work and write in the evenings.
Juliana, I'll let you know on Monday.
Liza, we don't want you to go bald.
Michael, thanks for the incredible informative post. Even though I have friends who've already self-published and offer great advice, I've been looking for more resources. This is a nice start. Great post!
*waves at Alex* Thanks for hosting Michael.
Good luck. Michael, on your new release. I love YA so I'll
check it out.
Fantabulous guest post! Also, downloaded Provex City. Looks to be a good read.
Michael's post was a lot of fun!
And i CANNOT WAIT to see Prometheus tonight! It's going to be awesome!!
So have you seen it yet? Review on Monday?
great advice michael! it really is sooooo very important to be sure to get those books professionally edited!
thanks mr. alex, for helping spread the word about SGS! :)
Self publishing sounds like such a daunting task, but great advice.
And congrats Vic on the new biz. :)
Is it even possible to be movied out? I'm so happy for Vic!!!
Great tips from Michael, thank you for sharing! I'm giving the traditional route a try, but self-publishing is definitely a lucrative avenue and has helped so many people get their work out there for readers.
Michael Pierce is an awesome and giving person. I'm so happy for him and his debut novel. Already shouted out the free read, Michael. Thanks again for jumping in to help out KOTRT group on Goodreads. Much appreciated!!
Alex - Enjoy the movies. I'm looking forward to hearing what you have to say.
Michael - Thanks for the quick lesson in self-publishing. Good to have.
Alex - I'll be watching for your comments on Prometheus and Madagascar III, both are on my TBS list.
I like reading about others who self-published. And I enjoyed the interview, especially since he did recommend Smashwords and I've not been sure that was a good site or not (Namely, if they put the book on other sites.)
Sadly, no movies for me this weekend. I do want to see Madagascar III sometime, looks funny.
Great post by Mr. Michael! I do follow him on his awesome blog.
I've got a dinner and two softball games this weekend. No movies for me.
perfect summation & simplification of self publishing! love it! so succinct!
and cant wait to hear about tjose movies!
I am really interested in the website that creates the book cover. Thanks for the news.
Great post. I'm thinking of jumping into the world of self-publishing with my YA trilogy. This article was really helpful!
I might try and go see a movie this weekend -- I'm thinking Snow White....so we'll see. :)
Great guest post. I'd love to hear more.
Since I'm thinking of self-pubbing, this is a great read for me. Thanks for hosting Michael!
I'm in full dance recital mom madness for June so movies are out, unless I try to see one on a weekday at an early matinee . . .probably won't happen until Brave comes out.
BTW - I have an award for you at my blog - I know you are a busy Ninja Captain, so if you don't want to post anything about it, that's ok with me. Just wanted to let you know that I think you are a "Great Commenter" - actually and awesome commenter!
Sarah, I'm seeing it this afternoon!
Matthew, review on Monday.
Vic, you're welcome - sorry it's a day late.
Lynda, not for me!
Ciara and LD, I'll have reviews for you on Monday.
Heather, sorry no movie for you.
Lynn, it has issues, so be warned.
Congrats to Michael about his book! I snagged a copy. :)
Self-publishing is not easy, but it can be rewarding and teaches you a lot about publishing and promoting.
Just followed and downloaded Michael's book and visited Vic - lots of awesome stuff. Thanks Alex!
This is a fantastic post, Michael! Thanks for sharing your experiences and what you've learned about this process.
Thanks for hosting, Alex, and have a great weekend!
I learn something new everyday- Thanks Michael and Alex.
Great tips Michael! Best of luck with Provex City! Thanks for hosting Alex, and try not to go overboard with the Hot Tamales! Julie
Yes, Donna Shields's book, Secrets of Jenkins Bridge, seems very, very interesting.
Great post, Michael. Congrats on your debut!
I'm having a YA blurb fest at my secondary blog, TBR, this weekend - please come and post your blurb!
The blog's had some good traffic with it, so if you post your link, you'll get some more downloads. :)
I am completely amazed at people who self-publish. It's so much work after the so much work it took to write the book in the first place. Great guest post.
I'll be interested to hear your review of Prometheus since our paper shredded it this morning.
Great post, Michael. I'm in the middle of all that right now. As I read I kept going yeah...yeah....
Waving to Alex :)
Julie, I try to limit it to one box!
Cate, hope he takes you up on that offer.
Susan, I'm going in with cautious expectations.
I'll be downloading Michael's book today, for sure. But I could never self-pub myself. All that self-promotion & marketing is way beyond any skills I have. Have fun at the movies, Alex!
Great post! Loved it! New follower, btw. I'm hopping around looking for cool blogs to follow (yours is awesome!) and hoping people will return the favor. If you want to reciprocate I'm at musingsonfantasia.blogspot.com and lkhill.blogspot.com. Yes, I have two blogs! One focuses on all things fantasy, the genre of my debut novel which will be out later this year. The other one focuses on writing in general and historical tidbits, as I also dabble in historical fiction. Follow one or both; doesn't matter to me. I look forward to your posts! :D
Great guest post by Michael. The 300 words summed it all. Provex City sounds like a great book, the title itself is intriguing enough to hook me.
I picked up the book. It made my TBR stack collapse.
Amazon has been my best place for sales, followed by Nook. So far I've had only one sale on Smashwords, though I know others who have done much better
I admire Michael for the hard work he's put into that book! And he's learned some great lessons to pass on along the way. Looking forward to a Prometheus review--I haven't decided if I want to see it.
Congrats to Michael on the book. Self publishing is way more work than I think most realize. Especially the promoting. It's something a lot of people have trouble with.
Self publishing sounds like a hell of a lot of hard work - more power to anyone who goes down that route!
Michael, congratulations on taking that big step.
Alex, Kiddo #2 just talked his dad into taking him to see Madagascar III. I wonder if your review and his will match up.
How was John Carter? I've been wanting to watch it but just never found the time. So many awesome new movies coming out this summer!
I did all my homework for formatting my own e-book, then turned my manuscript over to a e-book formatter anyway. I'm not sure if I was scared...or lazy. :D
Congrats to Michael, Donna, and Vic.
You know I sp. I love it. So far.
I'm supposed to see Prometheus next week with some of my writer buds. Will have to procure John Carter.
Thanks Michael for the insightful post! I agree and have an editor, cover designer, and a good friend to format as they can perform these tasks far better than I can.
Good luck with Provex City, and I'm downloading to my KindleFire right now!
Thanks, Michael, for the self-publishing info. I'm getting ready to release a book this summer. It's being edited right now.
We're going to see Battleship this weekend. Prometheus isn't here yet. Yes I live in the back forty of Oregon!
A great post, Michael! Thank you for the information. I'll be self-publishing very soon. Good to know about the print and e-copy especially since my family will want print!
Alex, I wish I was going to see Prometheus. Yet John Carter arrived from Netflix. Good movie for this weekend after all! :)
Hey Liesel! Fantasy sounds like my style.
Andrew, that's funny!
Allison, I'll let you know my thoughts on Monday.
Johanna, I hope we both find it funny!
Nutschell, it was awesome!
Patricia, go with smart!
Karen you are in for a stupid but fun ride with Battleship!
Christine, that's just as good.
Convenient--a post about self-publishing and a link to a cover designer below. :)
Thanks for the tips, Michael!
That's a good checklist, Michael. An editor is so important.
I can't wait to see Madagascar.
A well done guest post, Michael!
I have had a look at the description of Provex City and downloaded a copy.
I cna't promise that I will read it in near future but I will show it to my wife ...
Michael has such a fun blogging voice! I really enjoyed this. :)
Might be my favorite guest post Alex has ever featured! Good stuff, Michael. :)
I'll be going to the movies. (Hopefully a couple of times after the week I've had.)
Vic is the best, and is the one responsible for my blog's background. Also...free book, you say? Heading to check it out right now.
I'm looking forward to your review of Prometheus. I want to know if I should try to drag my family along to see it.
Congrats, Michael! What a fun post! And a free book, too? Nice!
Alex, enjoy the weekend. I feel like the only one out of my blogging buddies who WON'T be seeing Prometheus. :( Alas, there's a book to finish. Look forward to Monday's recap!
Thanks for the concise info on self-publishing Michael!
There are so many steps to self pubbing - it's nice that so many people are willing to share their paths and their pitfalls!
You packed a TON of useful info into 300 words on self publishing. Sounds like a lot of hard work just reading it, but the whole getting a book published.period.is hard work, so congratulations on getting there!!!
Congrats on the release of you book, Michael. It is so important to have a plan and have all those elements in place - editing, cover, etc. Thanks for the reminder.
Golden, it wasn't planned, but it worked out nice!
EJ, he'll be pleased to hear that. Multi-movie weekend for me as well.
Ken, I'll post it Monday!
TL, I'll give you the low-down on Monday.
not going to the movies this weekend (my brother and I NEVER go on opening night) but we are going next weekend to see Prometheus. Can't wait :)
Great post Michael! and under 300 words. I'm impressed!
Enjoy your movies Alex :)
We made it to see Snow White. It was a little slow in places and there were some plot holes, but it was a fun watch. Really dark.
Donna, dark is an apt description.
Well no time for movies this weekend or next week, it's all about the Belize vacation prep! I def want to see Prometheus when I get back (one of those early from work matinees!). I downloaded the book and stuck it on my Kindle...thanks Alex!
Still gotta see the Avengers, ahhhh!!!
Michael, I enjoyed your article and congratulations on finishing and publishing your first book.
I agree, it's SO important to produce a professional body of work. If you're self pubbing, it's even more important to make sure the cover art is professional looking and doesn't scream--I'm self published. Kudos to you for getting the help you needed to produce this one!
Alex, Me, me, me. I'm going to the movies. I'm scheduled to see Snow White. I liked the trailers for Prometheus. I'll look forward to seeing your take on it.
Sia McKye OVER COFFEE
Goooooo Michael! *waves pom poms* ;)
I just got the little put to bed, so I can finally get back on the computer. I'm so overwhelmed by all the encouraging comments! :) Thank you everyone, and there are so many of you I need to visit (it may take me a little while). And yes, I'm going to check out the TBR YA Blurbfest first thing in the morning. Thanks Cate. :)
Wonderful guest post..thank you for all your insight! I'm still behind, trying to play catch up with the ISWG. I was in court all day, Thursday. I'm amazed at all I missed!
Congrats to Michael,Donna and Vic~
I hope to get caught up this weekend!
See you at the movies...okay, not really, but it sounded fun~lol
I know Prometheus looks really mind altering cool! Have fun~
What great tips... thanks Michael for sharing:)
I saw Bernie and Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and loved them both - and you are so right about ISWG posts this month. They were awesome and the comments I received were so wise and thoughtful.
Great guest post.
I love the phrase 'holy adjectives and expletives' - too funny! And what are Chiweenies?
Chuck, you'll have a great time on your vacation though. Still, you need to see the Avengers sometime.
Sia, go and enjoy! My review will be up on Monday.
Michael, glad you noticed Cate's comment!
Ella, sorry you were stuck in court. And I don't think it's possible to catch up with the IWSG.
Karen, the posts this month were amazing.
Good post, Michael. Thanks for the reminder about your book being free this weekend :-)
I watched Snow White and the Huntsman last night. Enjoyed it more than I expected :-) The poster for Prometheus looked scary!
Fabulous interview on self-pubbing, Alex. Am I following Michael? You bet. :)) Loved all the tips and wealth of experience he's had along the way.
Movies this week? Nah, not this traveling girl. So much to tell in a comment box. Will post my adventures in Colorado on my blog early in the next week. :)
Thanks for having Michael over, it was a great read.
Your blog is awesome, totally love it! :) happy summer!
Great guest post Mike. Good tips on self publishing. Self pub seems like a very viable option these days if you are willing to put in the marketing work.
Enjoy the movies Alex.
Oooh, free books! I love free books. :D Vic sure has some mad skills with cover art, doesn't she? I especially like that Elemental cover. Such great colors.
Interesting Provex City.
Good post, I've not taken the plunge into self publishing, but from what I understand everyone should strive to have a hand in different pots. Thanks for a thought provoking post.
I guess I should add, Chiweenies are Dachshund / Chihuahua mixes. I've got two that are complete opposites, the infamous Bugsy & Violet. Thank you for more great comments! Happy Saturday! :)
Great info here! Thank you so much, and thanks for the copy of Provex City I hope it becomes a huge success!!
Thanks for sharing the tips, Michael! I've been really fortunate in my journey to self-publshing to know people in different fields to help me out--and I've taught myself to do other things (like formatting, which was a headache and a half the first time around!). I'm going the traditional route on some books, and the self-publishing route on others. It's a crazy journey no matter which path you take!
I'm looking forward to your movie reviews, Alex!
Best wishes to Michael.
If you're movied out then now maybe it's time to watch some real film. Can I suggest Fellini? I guess that would come as no surprise.
A Faraway View
Rachel, it has its creepy moments.
Candilynn, look forward to reading about your adventures.
James, I did!
Angela, she does very good work!
Michael, now we know!
Laura, I'll have several for you on Monday.
Lee, I've seen one of his movies. That was enough.
Hi Alex and greetings Michael Pierce,
First of all, no need to consider this, "a little intimidating". It's good to share and during my time getting to know Alex, I know he embraces the diversity amongst the writers and bloggers within this sharing, caring, encouraging community.
A lot of useful information has been provided by you, Michael and will, no doubt, be of benefit to established and aspiring writers.
Although one must be very cautious in self-publishing.
Thank you both for your time and enjoy the remainder of the weekend.
With respect, Gary
What an awesome post, Alex. Love the light that Micheal shed on self-publishing. I'll down-load his book, it sounds wicked. :)
I actually have a question for you... I'm contemplating going with a smaller publisher for my current MS, and was wondering if I could ask you a few questions about your success?
Do you have a address I can email you on?
Thanks so much :)
Thank you Gary. And I hope I don't intimidate anyone. I'm just a geek who likes to write and play guitar.
Jade, yes - feel free!!!
Still on the fence with self-publishing, though I am enjoying the KDP process with my previously published stories. I'll be taking Father Fowler to see Prometheus for his special day next week.
Very helpful pointers. I'm wondering about the subject there wasn't enough words to cover: money. The cost of self-publishing? Maybe I'll do some blog hopping to see what I can learn.
I saw Prometheus yesterday, and I must say I was disappointed. Special effects were awesome, but the plot and characters - underwhelming!
Milo, it does have its place.
Robyn, I think to do it right costs some amount of money.
DL, I was as well. My review goes up tomorrow.
I did consider self publishing, but decided against it. There are too many things involved, very few of which I know anything about.
Nice save, to Michael!
I've got John Carter, now just to watch it. Tonight is Madagascar III at the drive-in!
Raises hand. Going to the movie. Yes. Men in Black is the target. Tommy Lee Jones better be as great as he always is. I'm depending on him. :-)
As to Snark and Michael. Great job. Here's to his self-pubbed success.
I might self-publish a book if I write something pretty off the wall or something. But for now, I'll stick with traditional publishing.
Going to check out Vic's artwork!
Shannon, you'll have a good time!
Lee, Jones is good and so is Brolin playing a young Jones.
Oh my goodness... so much to learn in the writing and publishing world. Absolutely amazing! Thanks for having Michael over to share! :) I'm all about snark! :)
Michael, you've got some really terrific tips here. Thanks for sharing.
Alex, I finally saw Battleship this weekend. Took the nephews. What a blast! I'm hoping to catch Prometheus this week. We could never be movied out. ;)
I wanted to give one last BIG thank you to everyone for the great response, comments, and support by downloading. :) And one more huge thank you to Alex for hosting me! It's practically Monday. The weekend has gone by way too fast.
Congrats Michael. I've just been through the self-publishing adventure with an anthology. It's a wild and complex ride.
Alex, I'm dying to see Prometheus. I plan to sneak in a weekday show.
Nice guest post, Michael - a good save there at the end indeed ;)
Thanks for the book recommendation, I have added it to my to-buy list!
Great checklist. And thanks for the link to Michael's book, which I now have.
It was great being a part of IWSG this month.
I don't know if I'm not blog savvy but I can't find an email address for you.
My question I guess is how much self-promotion did you have to do for your books? How did you become a best-seller on Amazon? Did the publisher include an editing service and book flap?
See, lots of questions! lol
Melissa, wasn't Battleship dumb but fun?
Michael, it's been a blast.
Medeia, glad you joined us!
Jade, it's on my author bio page.
Thank you Alex for the shout out
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