Op-ed: How to Self-Publish and Not Perish in the Process

BY George Snyder

September 23 2011 3:00 AM ET

SELF-PUBLISH OR PERISH 02 XLRG | ADVOCATE.COM Seven: Don’t Stop. True story. I know you’re thinking (I’m psychic, I know these things) I am making this sound way too easy. What’s the catch? I’ll tell you. The whole thing ends when you stop. I don’t know how long it will take you to finish your book and publish it yourself. But I do know it will perish and never see the light of day and land in the hands of readers if you stop. I live in a town that is full of people doing lots of things. And lots of them have an unfinished script and a dream. An unfinished novel and a gut feeling it’s good and worth publishing if they could just find the time, the money, the right agent, the right publisher and so on. I personally know wonderful people with amazing stories to tell, if they would just put them into words and get them out there for the world to read, but they’ve been frustrated and disappointed by the traditional methods, turned down by the usual suspects, and discouraged by well-meaning critics.

Here’s the bottom line: the actual mechanics of producing a book yourself aren’t all that complicated. Daunting, maybe, the first time, but it’s not rocket science. So what happens once you’ve done that? Go back and look at Steps One and Two above. You looked ahead, you built yourself some kind of platform, and no, don’t let yourself fall into the trap of thinking a traditional publisher would be putting up billboards all over town or have you out doing book signing tours, those days have come and gone if they ever existed. I personally know published writers who are hustling to sell and promote their book and they have agents and real-live publishing houses behind them. But here’s the thing: don’t stop, once the first copy of your book arrives. If you don’t stop, you will not only have a book, you will be selling it. And you might have fun in the process. And don’t hesitate to ask your friends. You can ask me at [email protected]. I know some cute guys who might take their clothes off for you, if you ask them. I just did the photo shoot for my second book. Gloria was there, and Jim was there, and Christopher. And you know what? We had fun.

George Snyder’s next book, Down the Garden Path, is due out from Lulu.com October 1st.

George will be appearing at the 10th Annual West Hollywood Book Fair, on the panel “Taking the Book by the Horns: Choosing to Self-Publish” with Rex Pickett and others, moderated by the novelist Eduardo Santiago, at 10:30 am, Sunday October 2nd, West Hollywood Park.
 






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