National Novel Writing Month is over, and those who participated and "won" now have a first draft of their book sitting prominently on their writing desk. Enthusiasm is at an all-time high, as writers imagine the prospect of becoming an Author in the New Year. You, too, may have been struck by this euphoria, standing at the author starting line. You'll be ready to leap forward at the starting gun, with the support of your loved one and that encouraging midnight kiss. Although writing a book is a huge accomplishment; it’s also a LOT of work. The demands of your Muse, your characters, and your readers are not to be taken lightly.
Publishing a book is akin to getting married and having children. The process requires your full commitment… emotionally, intellectually, and financially. You’ll have to coordinate your editorial sessions around family and work obligations, and you’ll need to budget money for publishing and marketing.
Taking a self-inventory to assess your mental, emotional, and financial preparedness is essential. Dorothy Parker once said, “I hate writing, I love having written.” Whether Self-Publishing, Indie Publishing, or going the Traditional route, it’s an arduous process, and a time-consuming one, at that. Be certain that this is the path you truly want to travel.
There are ten basic questions you should ask yourself before you begin the madness that is publishing. Consider each one carefully. When it’s all over, and you still think you want to publish a book… by all means, jump into that pond with both flippers!
1.Can I publish on my own... Or do I need professional guidance?
2.What is my budget for this project? Am I willing to pay additional fees for additional services?
3.Does the publisher offer a contract? Am I happy with the royalty return rate?
4.How important is “Right of First Refusal” to me? How much control do I want over the publication process?
5.How much editorial assistance does my book require? Does the publisher offer a free manuscript review to assess the work to be done?
6.How supportive is my editor going to be throughout the process? Mail, phone, in-person meetings, email?
7.How much time is reasonable to go to press?
8.Have I reviewed copies of books this publisher has produced, and do they meet my expectations?
9.Are there reviews from others who have worked with this publisher; both positive and negative?
10.How important is marketing to me? Am I committed to being fully engaged in the process?
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