Looking out for the Little Gal
So I want to chat about publishing and the headache I went through to publish my first manuscript. It was trial by fire or FFIO (F'ing Figure It Out) which is how most folks in tech work so I was used to it. Quite frankly, I had a leg up on most because the tech necessary to self publish did not intimidate me but I can see how it would most folks.
First, I had to figure out if I wanted to go the traditional or self-publish route. The prospect of trying to find a publishing house willing to take my manuscripts was deflating, to say the least. Add on top of that, once you sign that contract they basically own your work. They control design, editing, everything, AND it takes anywhere from six to eighteen months to get your book on the shelf. Ugh. I hated that idea so I decided I needed to figure out how to self-publish.
Self-publishing has its own challenges. You have to find a POD (Print on Demand) vendor and there are MANY. I wanted the control of how/where I distribute but if you go with the big A they will not allow you to get your books in small book stores or really any other book retailer at all. I have love hate relationship with big A to the point I was not willing to let them control my distribution. SO I found a retailer agnostic POD vendor who can distribute my books to multiple retailers (including big A) and do that distribution for me. The POD I chose I honestly love. I can import my manuscripts, book jacket, and format it the way I want it and move it along at my pace to publication.
Does self-publishing my way have its limits? Absolutely. Most awards are for traditional authors so boo. Also if you do not publish through big A their special programs are not available to you. Disappointing, yes, big deal... meh.
Will small bookstores carry my books? Maybe and that's enough for me. However my book is available in print and eBook formats on AMZ, B&N, Kobo, Apple, and GooglePlay. So I feel that is a great distribution but I guess we'll see from a sales perspective later.