Self publishing can be a free and easy option. You don’t have to query agents or publishers, receive rejection letters, or wait months and months to see the finished product.
There are two options I’ve found to be the easiest way to self-publish: Amazon and Smashwords.
Amazon is where I was directed to by P.n. Elrod. She told me that it is a better option than going through any traditional publisher. I don’t really want to self-publish all my books, but I needed to build up my ‘platform’ before my book, Me and Billy the Kid, is released in November through Tate Publishing and Enterprises LLC. So I signed up for an account, followed the formatting instructions, created a book cover, choose the price, select the channels it will be distributed on and presto! your book is published! It is accessible to the world in as little as 24 hours and you can have your first royalty check deposited into your bank account just as soon as you accumulate $10 is sales.
More recently, I discovered Smashwords after searching for an easy way to get my book to Barnes and Noble. The fastest way to do that is to self-publish through Smahswords. But I use the word ‘easy’ lightly. I’ve never been one for following directions. If I buy something that comes with an instruction manual, I throw the booklet aside and only seek its guidance after repeatedly trying and failing miserably to put my new toy together.
That’s what I did with Smashwords. I ignored the formatting guidelines and submitted my book. (Raise your hands if you think that the color red should never be used for proofreading purposes!) After seven failed attempts to get my book into the premium catalog where it would be distributed through Barnes and Nobles, I finally turned to the directions.
After reading the formatting guidelines one single time, I resubmitted my manuscripts and four hours later, I’m notified that my book had been accepted! Who’d have thought it could have been so easy? Let that be a lesson to all you newbie authors out there: directions are made for a reason! Follow them and you’ll get fewer headaches.
I’ll update you in a week or so and let you know if my book made it to Barnes and Noble, the Apple Store, Sony, and Kobo. (What is Kobo???)
If not, its back to the drawing board…and maybe I’ll reread the direction to see if I missed anything.