by Sarita Venkat
I just finished reading Guy Kawasaki and Shawn Welch’s book APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur—How to Publish a Book. In excruciating detail, the authors take the reader through a step-by-step process on how to self-publish by (fittingly) self-publishing APE. The book is a guide and resource for authors exploring an alternate publishing route. It’s also a good reminder that in the digital age, it doesn’t hurt writers and publishers to know about the social and technical tools available and accessible to them.
That said, self-publishing isn’t for the fainthearted. The information is overwhelming and the choices numerous. So it got us thinking—why don’t we help demystify the process by shadowing a nonfiction author as they navigate the self-publishing maze?
Meet Susan Crites Price. Susan is a Washington, DC-based freelance writer, book author, and speaker. She an expert on the topic of family philanthropy. Susan has talked about this issue on television (Oprah, NBC’s “Today”) and has written about it in various publications (Working Mother, The Chronicle of Philanthropy).
In 2001 Susan published The Giving Family: Raising Our Children To Help Others, a highly regarded book in the philanthropic world. According to Susan, the book helped her secure some speaking engagements, allowing her to talk about a topic she’s passionate about and in the process, sell more copies. Susan is currently writing an updated version taking into account technology’s role in charitable giving. (“Twelve years ago kids didn’t give online. Today, they do a million things online—including philanthropy.”)
Susan has already traveled the traditional publishing path with her previous six books, so this time she’s decided to self-publish. Why? Similar to many people she wants more control over the publishing process and prefers not to spend time finding an agent or publisher.
So, we’ll travel with Susan as she researches the self-publishing world. We’ll learn about the choices she faces, the decisions she makes, and the challenges she encounters. We’ll follow her as she decides on art for her book cover, finds a printing vendor, and devises a marketing plan.
Self-publishing may be liberating but it is also hard. Over the next few months, we’ll find out how one fearless author finds her way.
Key Takeaway: Have you considered self-publishing? Why or why not?
Sarita Venkat focuses on communications and online media for Big Fish Media.