Updated: Jan 25, 2020
I’ve always been quite an entrepreneurial person. In my mid-twenties, I ran a beauty blog, which was quite successful. Even now, years on, I still have gifted products left over from that time which I’m working my way through! I’ve also had ventures that were less successful, like the time I decided I’d sell dog jumpers at Greenwich Market and ended up selling about three one Saturday afternoon and then having over a hundred in a drawer under my bed for months (eventually shifted them on eBay but made no profit!). My point is, I like having my own little business projects. Self-publishing seems like the perfect way to combine my interest in business with my aptitude for writing.
I’m a bit of a geek at heart and have always been curious about what goes on behind the scenes when a book is published. A lot of it is still a mystery to me, but I’ve been learning about self-publishing, swotting up on Amazon’s self-publishing platform, KDP Select. I did a course on Udemy, which was really good and showed me how to use the platform and upload my cover and manuscript, which you can see here. I’m now focusing on learning about the marketing side of things, and will be trying to understand how best to spread the word about my book. I hear Facebook ads are key so I’m looking into doing courses in that!
Self-publishing gives me the freedom to publish novels that traditional publishers might not be interested in. I pitched the idea for Flying Solo, which is about a woman who travels to India to win back her boyfriend, to a publisher and had the feedback that it was a "destination read" and may not have widespread appeal to readers.
However, I’ve been to India twice and truly adore it. I met so many interesting people and had some really unique experiences, which I believe will come across vibrantly in my book. Self-publishing gives me the freedom to pursue ideas that I think will be good, but which are perhaps a little different to the mainstream.
I’m quite an artistic person. I paint as a hobby and I feel I have quite a good eye when it comes to design. I recently worked with a designer on my cover. It was really fun coming up with the concept for the design and seeing the designer bring it to life. I had ideas for flourishes like the heart on the end of 'Flying' and it was just really cool being able to work with my designer and create something that I absolutely love.
I have a tendency to get bored quite easily. I’ve had four books traditionally published, but I feel now is the time for something new. Venturing into self-publishing allows me to experiment. My book may sell well, it may not, but it’s interesting and stimulating to me to experiment with a new avenue in publishing.
What do you think? Have you tried self-publishing? Would you try it? I'd love to hear your thoughts!