I self-published my first novel seven years ago, and I made every mistake a writer can possibly make doing it.
The biggest one was rushing it.
I think the time between me learning that I could self-publish a book on Amazon and me publishing a book there was no more than a month. I wanted to be a published author and so I became a published author.
[snaps fingers] Just like that.
I didn’t bother with an editor, and I created the cover myself using a low-res photo I’d happened to take on my phone one day. My author photo on the back was just a poorly lit selfie.
And, and this is the part that may hurt the most, I published it at size 8.5 x 11“. A novel. I changed the page sizes to 5.5 x 8” after I received my final copy in the mail (Yes, I went straight to final copy. I didn’t bother to take advantage of Amazon’s proofing process.) but all that did was create two different versions of this god-forsaken book.
It hurts to even show you these covers, but it must be done. I present to you covers one (8.5 x 11”) and two (5.5 x 8”) of my super great novel, Welcome to Kinsdale Falls.
(I hate the story itself too but that’s a post for another time…)
This book haunts me. It will never go away. It exists now forever on Amazon and is a constant reminder that my first foray into self-publishing was an unmitigated disaster.
Thankfully, I learned from my mistakes and when it came time to self-publish my second novel, it was not a disaster. I took my time. I hired an editor. I had a talented graphic designer friend design the cover for me using a professional photo.
I’m proud of this book, and, what do you know, I’ve even sold some copies!
I wish I’d had someone like me to reach out to for guidance when I first decided to self-publish. Someone who’d already made all the mistakes. Someone to tell me to slow it down and who was willing to work through each step of the self-publishing process with me.
If I had, that first atrocity would not haunt me like it does.
If you’d like help self-publishing your novel, please contact me.