After years of work writing and editing, and the last several months designing the book and laying it out, it is finally available for sale on lulu.com! Although I was finished about 6 weeks ago, I waited to announce it to the world until I received the hard copy proof of the book to make sure it looked as good as I hoped. And it does!
I am very pleased with my decision to self-publish! It is a thrill to create the book from start to finish. But for anyone thinking of self-publishing in my footsteps, I have a few words of wisdom.
It isn’t any quicker than a traditional publisher. While you bypass the through the process of submitting manuscripts and awaiting approval, you save no time in writing, rewriting, and editing. Then you begin the process of designing the book: finding and hiring an illustrator, finding proofreaders and/or editors, deciding on the typesetting (which I laboured over!), finding a cover designer, finding a book designer, doing the final layout and checks, creating an index, making a reference page, and a zillion other details. You can do some of these jobs yourself — I did everything myself, except for the illustrations and one level of proofreading — but you may not have the skills to design or typeset the book yourself, so this takes extra time as well as money.
It is a lot of work! Even if you are writing full time, the actual process of publishing is very different from writing. The finished product simply must look professional, or you might as well have made it on a photocopy machine. There’s more than a little stress in designing a book!
Self-publishing is very rewarding. As I mentioned, you skip the process of submitting manuscripts and hoping for a contract. You get to take a very active role in your future, rather than waiting for the approval of others. As you might guess, I’m a big fan of that!
I encourage anyone who has written a book to start passing it around to others to read. Get some opinions from a variety of readers and personalities. Send it to your friends who read the most — they know good writing when they read it and can give you tips. Try sending it to some acquaintances who will give you a more honest opinion than your mom!
To be one of the first to order a book, go to the Love Your Skeletons lulu.com page.