Verdict: SELF-PUBLISHING! is a useful reference, and can offer an author much of value in navigating the self-publishing experience.
SELF-PUBLISHING! is a collection of articles giving comprehensive advice to new authors seeking to independently publish their books. The articles cover a variety of topics concerning the entire book-publishing process, from how to choose an editor to designing a book cover to making the most of social media. The writers are generally professional authors, consultants and marketing professionals, i.e. people who may be expected to have a substantial understanding of and personal experience with the business.
The advice appears generally sound and comprehensive, giving authors a solid place to start building their books, reputations, and sales. Also, there are some sound points made, especially “always have your work proofread by someone else, preferably a professional,” and “do not take negative reviews too personally.” There are a number of useful ideas for promoting one’s work, and some of the articles take the reader step-by-step through processes like building an author page on Amazon, or marketing a book to a corporate audience. The writers also demonstrate key promotional techniques in their signatures, which often direct readers to their websites, blogs, and books.
The advice can be somewhat repetitive, with different articles making the same points over and over again, though some might not see this as a flaw, as many of the points are well worth restating. Occasionally, articles contradict each other; several articles, for example, stated that having a blog is not difficult and is absolutely essential for promotional purposes, whereas one tells potential authors not to blog on the grounds that it is too difficult to keep adding content every day/week/month, and that failure to do so will drive away readers. Additionally, the book would be much improved if all of the writers followed its advice on comprehensive proofreading – there were far too many grammar, punctuation, and spelling errors, particularly for a book designed to serve as a reference for authors.
SELF-PUBLISHING! is a useful reference, and can offer an author much of value in navigating the self-publishing experience.
Reviewed by Catherine Langrehr for IndieReader.