Have you ever thought of writing your own medical thriller? Self-publishing used to get a bad rap in the writing world. There was a time when it was synonymous with poor-quality vanity writers who had no choice but to self-publish when their work was turned down by traditional publishers. Today, self-publishing has become more respected, as the format is increasingly recognized for producing quality material. Here’s what you need to know to get your work self-published through Amazon’s program for independent writers.
eBook, Print and Audio
The most popular way to self-publish with Amazon is digitally. Amazon is a leading platform for Book sales, and you can upload your work and have it transferred to Kindle format. They offer royalties of up to 70 percent for this method, and promise to have your work up and ready for sale in just a day or two. It’s also free to upload material, so you’ve got nothing to lose if you’re confident of your work’s quality and are happy to get it out there. There’s also some great eBook readers at Bestgear.org.
The format is particularly popular for bloggers who write eBooks on their subject areas as a side project. If you run a blog about digital marketing, for example, then writing an eBook about SEO and putting it up for sale can be a great way to diversify your offering. Many novel and short story writers also take advantage of the format, making their work available for Amazon’s huge market of readers. You’ll benefit from honest public reviews, which can be essential feedback and encouragement for future work.
You’re not limited to eBooks, however. Amazon also has tools for traditional print publishing, along with audio books if those formats are more your thing.
Website for your Books
A good website can be one of your best marketing tools as a self-published author. You can use your website to provide synopsis or sample chapters of your books, links or an e-shop to purchase your work, a place to join the mailing list for news about future books, contact info, and more. To further interact with readers and hopefully encourage sales you can also link out to your social media profiles, have a form to submit reviews of your books, etc.
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Extra Cash or New Career
If you’re confident, then it doesn’t hurt to give Amazon self-publishing a try. It will obviously depend on quality, and you don’t want to just flood your portfolio with filler in the hope of making a quick buck. Many excellent writers find no success with traditional publishing; even J.K. Rowling had to keep pushing through waves of rejection letters before she was finally picked up by Bloomsbury. In the self-publishing world, one of Amazon’s best success stories is that of Minnesotan author Amanda Hocking. She originally put up a few of her novels to try and make the $300 she needed for an upcoming trip, and was astounded when she made $20,000 in just six months. Sales skyrocketed and she went on to become a millionaire off the back of the rejected novels that have now become bestsellers.
You may not make millions, but a lot people make decent side incomes from their self-published work. By simplifying and democratizing the publishing process, authors are able to take control of their work. They’re also not beholden to the demands of agents and publishers. No one regulates your content, so you’ll need to get your work proofread and edited if you’re serious about making a go of it. Ultimately, what ends up in the book is up to you. Also, you’re free to set your own prices, and you can track statistics with Amazon’s tools to see how you’re doing over time.
Whether you’re a fiction author or nonfiction writer looking to get your work out there, Amazon self-publishing can be a satisfying way to make money from your passion for writing. The process is simple, and it puts the power in your hands by circumventing the traditional publishing route. Experimenting with short-format pieces or work that’s been sitting unsold on your hard drive for a while can be a great way to get your feet wet in the increasingly popular world of self-publishing.