SELF-PUBLISHING AND NIWA
by P.J. Cowan
|NIWA BOOTH AT ORYCON|
Digital technology changed all that. Writers now have a range of options, including e-book only companies like Amazon’s Kindle program or Smashwords.com. Both provide a simple user interface where you can upload your book and cover. There is no up front cost and they only receive a small share of the profits from your sales.
Print on demand, or POD publishers such as LightningSource or CreateSpace offer a similar service for your print edition. You upload your files and your books are printed only when you or a buyer request them, and again, the company takes only a small percentage of your profit.
That all sounds pretty good—so what’s the problem? Well there are a few. There has been a stigma around self-publishing for years. So even if you’ve worked hard to learn the rules of composition, or you’ve hired someone to edit your work and bring it to the level of traditional publishing, how do your prospective readers know?
Then, there’s selling your book. Many writers are used to working alone, and they like it; selling is socializing and may not be comfortable for everyone. In addition, self-publishing means you are doing it alone, without access to a professional publisher’s experience, or to the network of resources and contacts they’ve developed.
That’s where NIWA comes in.
I was introduced to NIWA, the Northwest Independent Writers Association, when a friend dragged me to the third meeting of the newly formed group. In the back room of an Irish pub in
NIWA’s mission is two-fold, to support
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In order to promote professionalism they’ve developed the NIWA Seal of Quality, or NSQ. Books are submitted, read and judged on 20 criteria, including spelling and grammar. If awarded the NSQ the book is highlighted at events and included in the NIWA catalog, sent to independent bookstores across the Northwest.
In my role as marketing director I find that there are not enough hours in the day to implement the great ideas that come from our members, which now number over 100.
Taking on the roles of writer, editor, cover designer, formatting expert, publisher and marketer the independent publisher faces huge challenges, the biggest of which is doing it all alone. As a member of NIWA, you don’t have to!
Please visit my website http://www.pambainbridgecowan.com to learn about my writing, and my All Things Indie Tab to find resources for independent publishers, or visit http://www.niwawriters.com to learn more about NIWA.
Ashlyn Mathews on Self-Publishing
Why would an author self-publish? There are a multitude of reasons depending on who you ask, but eventually the decision comes down to personal choice. My debut paranormal romance, Shadow Watcher, was released by a traditional publisher. A second book, My Fallen (with the same publisher) is slated for a release date of January 14th.
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|IF ONLY 12/02/12|
There were exceptions to the rule, of course, but as I had never been one for blackjack, roulette, or the slots, that did little to make the road look brighter. And then I started to see another trend: an uptick in self-publishing. Absolutely not. That was for the hacks, for the people who refused to believe the world when they were told their writing was drivel! But then I peeked through my fingers and saw little glow-lights flicker: the rise of the indie bestsellers, mid-listers from the traditional publishing world jumping ship, the development of user-friendly self-pub platforms by all the major booksellers. Eventually, the entrepreneur in me pulled those hands away from my author’s eyes.
|Image: © Xavier Mazellier|
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