In this episode I talk to Victoria Jeffrey who talks about her discovery of, and journey into, self-publishing. We talk about her attempts to go the traditional route in the 90s and then her journey into self-publishing which began a few years ago. In the main part of the show I ask about what she has learned over the last two years and what she is doing differently today.
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The interview with Michael Stackpole which lead her to discover self-publishing.
Victoria mentions the value of Pinterest in promotion and Adam (who commented below) pointed me in the direction of this article. Lot’s of information and actionable steps. If you’re already sold on Pinterest, skip down to “Five ways to use Pinterest” at the end of the article.
Recycle old Manuscripts
Victoria wrote two books in the 90s and they are not published anywhere. She just felt they weren’t up to her current standards. Instead she goes back and takes elements out of them for her newer works.
Victoria doesn’t currently have an editor as hiring someone who is really good is out of her current budget. She says you must at least get a book about self-editing book. Victoria is looking to hire an editor in the near future.
She uses beta-readers as the ‘fresh pair of eyes’ and says they are also useful in identifying some of the problems in your book that an editor would normally pick up. She found her beta readers in an online forum where people who read her genre gather.
As we’ve seen in other interviews she sees success with making the first book in a series free, but highlights you should have a whole series before doing this otherwise you won’t make any money! This is something Victoria learned the hard way, finding that she gave away far too much at the start of her indie career.
Choose your Genre/Audience Carefully
Be careful about the audience you write for – children’s books are not great selling and are not a great market to write for if you want to make a living (unless you are JK Rowling of course).
Take the Long View
Don’t expect to become a millionaire overnight! Stick with it, keep writing, remember it will take a while. Victoria has decided to pursue self-publishing for 5 years to see if she can make a full time living from it.
Tip for new writers:
Draw an outline of your book before you start writing, then all you have to do is dress up the outline and you have a book!
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