Baby Steps to Getting Published

The challenge these days is not how to find information on getting published – it is discerning what is useful and how your time is best spent. You have to be your own editor on the internet and try to find out the provenance and motivation of those offering help. One useful guide to self-publishing is Self-Printed – The Sane Person’s Guide to Self-Publishing, by Catherine Ryan Howard. It helps me that she, too, is Irish, and her tetchy, reality-check style amuses me. I’ve just ordered a print version of the third edition of her book, to use as a desktop reference. Up until now, I’ve been using a copy from my local library, where I could get frequent flyer points. Between it and the reams of information on the net, I am slowly arriving at a Cunning Plan to get my completed non-fiction book out there. The bones of this are: Get my book back from the editor and input all the changes. In the meantime, research and write the best possible query letter and book proposal. Send query letter, book proposal and sample chapter to the only appropriate publisher who seems to be accepting submissions without an agent. When that is sent off, forget about it as it is as likely to work as winning the lottery. Meanwhile, back on Planet Earth, I pursue the torturous job of formatting my manuscript for (a) eBook publishing and simultaneously for (b) print version or Print on Demand. All the while, I am poring over books and articles on how to create an online marketing strategy and turning my blog into a website. Then implement same. Meanwhile (you may notice there are a lot of meanwhiles in this process, indicating the need for the wearing of many hats) I am also earning a living and starting to put flesh on the bones of a fiction book plot I wrote six months ago. All in all, a simple, easy and fast way to become an overnight successful author living on my royalties. Yep.

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