IndieJourney: Kathi Casey

Since first deciding to write another book, I have been receiving Dan Poynter’s newsletters and have purchased two of his books: “The Self Publishing Manual Vol. 2” and “Book Printing at the Best Price.”

Many consider Dan the “go to” expert for self publishing, and certainly that has been our experience. These two books were extremely helpful in finding a printer, a cover designer, copy editor, and how best to display the illustrations we used. There is also plenty of information in Dan’s books and newsletters on the best ways to market your book. Essentially, we used Dan’s recommendations for printers, and his template for a request for quotes, and then chose the best price we received.

The only problem we had with this process is that each printer has their own terminology and pricing system, so when the estimates began coming in they actually presented more questions than answers. For instance, we had no idea there were so many different types of recycled paper � some are 30, 50, and 100 percent recycled, some that were partly recycled paper and partly from sustainable forests, some for text but not for covers, some certified recycled papers and others not.

It was a steep learning curve and because of this it took much longer than anticipated to choose a printer. We’ve kept excellent records in an Excel spreadsheet, with lots of notes though, so the next book will be easier.

Cover designers were a different story. I wanted to personally speak with a few and chose one that I felt understood my concept for the book. There were two designers who I really liked, and in the end decided to use the one from my own state.

Over-all we are pleased with the results. The book is very professionally designed and printed, and selling well. This book is the first in a series and we’re planning to self publish at least the next two.

I used a small publisher when I wrote my first book and it was not a big seller, not as nice looking as “Get Off The Couch, Potato!”, the publisher took a very large cut, priced it too high, (in my opinion) and didn’t really market it much. So, even though I was happy back then to say that I was a published author, I was disappointed in the experience over-all.

I would perhaps consider going with a larger publisher in the future, but for now, self publishing is for me!

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