For anyone considering publishing a book, I know that are a million questions and a million different things to do and a million different options. But starting with this quick guide is a sure fire way to start off on track.
1. Editing is Everything
The most important thing after finishing your manuscript is a thorough edit. Yes, getting people to buy it is pretty important but once readers have they're hands on it they defiantly need to be able to read it. After finishing your manuscript, wait a week or two before you start editing. Give yourself some space from it to gather a fresh look.
Then start with the plot. Read through your entire book and take notes with big-picture elements in mind. Check out the Four Phases of Editing to help out your process.
2. Memorable Title
At this point you might already have your book’s title. Or maybe now you want to change it after all the editing. That's fine. You always want to make you take your time in finding the right title. So here are a few tips:
Keep it short. Titling your book “The Blanks” is a classic for a reason: it gets the idea across in a quick and easy way for readers to remember.
Make it intriguing. Short titles are naturally intriguing. They call upon the imagination. But when in doubt, add a layer. Add a little bit of description with an extra word or two.
Don’t copy anyone. While it’s good to use a tested formulas, you don’t want your title to make people think of a different book.
3. Professional Formatting
Now that the writing is exactly as you'd like it, it's time to format your book. That means chapter headings, aligned text, and page numbers. Again, this is a critical step. Sending your book to agents and publishers, you need to format your manuscript in a standardized way. And if you're looking for a formatter, I will be providing that service here on my website pretty soon. Hopefully just in time to finish your book.
4. Perfect Cover
The next thing you’ll need to successfully publish your book is a strong cover. Your cover provides readers with a visual of your work. Which means it has to let them know that this book is for them. Try something:
Eye-catching. Whether photo-based, illustration-based, or typography-based cover, it must be interesting enough to catch someone's attention, yet not too busy that it's overwhelming.
Genre-indicative. Readers tend to look for certain cover design elements of their favorite genres, so you should match these expectations too.
5. Book Description
Your book description is major factor in getting someone to buy your book. Start by hooking your readers with a headline. Your headline should get readers invested right away. Then introduce the plot. DON'T summarize! Give a brief description of the main conflict. Leave them wanting more. End on a question, or hint at a twist. Make it impossible for readers not to preview your book.
Now your book is published!
But your work isn't done yet. After everything is said and done, it's time start marketing. The hype from your launch will have created a lot momentum. But here are a few more steps to take:
Connect with other authors. Appear for blog tours and guest posting to promote your book. Reach out to relevant blogs, especially to other authors to cross-promote.
Make price promotions. The price can always be better for customers. If your downloads are slipping or you haven’t run a price promotion in awhile, try it out.
Third-party promotional services. No good at self-marketing, don’t have the influence you’d like? Book promotion services can help out.
I hope these essential steps helped you with your book launch. And soon I'll have an even better way to help with the Self-Publishing Guide, expected to be released November 2022. Stay tuned!