The grand deal about self-publishing is how easy it is to do. If one really wants to put their work out there, they can. One can write it and format it and design a basic cover and publish all by themselves.
The horrible thing about self-publishing is how easy it is to do. Anyone can write a book, format it, design a basic cover, and hit publish.
The thing is, even though it’s easy to do and there are not gatekeepers holding you back, self-publishing is not something everyone should do.
With the rise of the Internet, self-publishing has become a viable route to success for many authors. While many famous writers still follow the traditional path collaborating with agents, editors, publishers, and marketers, there is no denying publishing by yourself is an attractive option as well. However, self-published authors wear all of the hats during this process, and that leads to several challenges and obstacles that they must overcome.
Self-publishing is one of the most mentally challenging things one ever has to do. It is not for the faint of heart. And, yet, most writers have issues. We aren’t perfectly happy and contented individuals. There’s a reason we don’t spend our free time sitting on the couch watching television or playing video games. Many of us have a dissatisfaction with life that we need to explore through our art. And when you’re off-balance to start with, self-publishing can destroy you. It can take what little self-esteem you had and crush it. And it can take someone who was already a little distrustful of the world and push them over the edge.
To know about the challenges that a self publishing author has to face, read on.
Challenge 1: Lack of a Financial support
As much as you try to convince yourself that it’s okay not to have a publisher, this will still serve as a challenge. This is because having a publishing house gives you resources that will make the publishing process so much easier. There are so many aspects of having a book published that needs to be taken care of. First you will have to have your book edited, then you have to design a book cover and layout for it and lastly have it published by a publishing house. And all these things need a lot of capital to set up. Which is why having the backing of a publishing house is important if you want to succeed.
Challenge 2: Multitasking
If you think about it, self-publishing a book is the epitome of multitasking. This is because not only do you write an entire manuscript you also have to look for a means to publish your book. Not to mention the minor aspects of publishing a book. This situation can get stressful very fast and may lead the writer to stop midway due to the strain. There is stress involved in every situation and it is a measure of your character on how you manage it. This also goes for self-published writers. Learn to handle your stress and stay positive. If the workload does seem too heavy for you, try to delegate some of your work to a professional.
Challenge 3: Creating an audience
This is one of the hardest things you will have to confront if you are a self-published writer. This is because your fan base is technically the lifeblood of your book campaign. And if you don’t have a fan base that means your chances of ever selling your books are exponentially low. This is why you have to create a loyal audience or fan-base for your book as soon as possible. The faster you make a fan-base the faster you sell your books. Creating a fan-base is all a matter of getting readers to notice your book. One way of doing this is by giving away free samples of your books. Free samples help your book circulate and gain attention. You can also send a sample of your book to fellow writers and book reviewers.
Challenge 4: Advertising
It is difficult to advertise your work as a self-published writer because you lack the necessary funds to advertise your work using traditional advertising methods. Some examples of these methods are advertisements using popular forms of media such as television and newspapers. And having your book featured in these media forms will costs you a fortune. You don’t really need to use traditional advertising methods to make an impression on readers. In this day and age there are a lot of methods that you can use to spread word of your book without spending a fortune. One method is using social media such as Facebook and making your very own blog site. You can also create a book trailer and load it through YouTube. With the technological advancements coming out every day advertising can be so much cheaper and effective.
Challenge 5: Negative Misconceptions from Readers
While the definition of good writing can be subjective, readers will know good writing when they see it. How readers come across the books that they adore shouldn’t matter, in the long run. But books that originate from the realm of self-publishing can often be ignored in favor of the mass market paperback or the hardback with an enormous amount of hype and buzz behind it. Readers will also tend to think that new works from well-known authors will already be full of higher-quality writing. However, one solution self-published authors have is to create superior work and be willing to share it free of charge. Book giveaways or free eBook sites online are a viable channel for this method.
Challenge 6: Lack of Confidence in Work
Every writer grapples with confidence. Part of being a writer is never quite knowing if your work is good enough to justify publication. By contacting reputable editors and publishers, they can help you determine if your work meets their standards for getting published. Speaking with other authors and getting feedback online is another way you can test the waters, and certain freelance websites offer editing services as well.
Challenge 7: Issues with Copyright Laws
While the Internet is a place that serves as an endless marketplace, you should also proceed with caution. As a self-published author, you could potentially run afoul of copyright laws without even realizing it. These issues can derail or even ruin your career. On the other side of the coin, your work could spread throughout the Web without credit being given where it is due. Always apply for a copyright to protect your writing. Having a copyright will make your case stronger if you should decide to pursue legal action against anyone who takes your work.
Challenge 8: Marketing and Distribution Troubles
Lastly, self-published authors often struggle to get their books enough attention. Marketing and distribution problems can plague any writer, especially those who start out by self-publishing. It’s hard to tap into the market through bookstores when bookstores are unwilling to accept your product, but this gets easier once you find a reliable marketing team to get behind you.
Self-publishing is one of the most viable options that a writer can take in order to have a book published. But unlike traditional publishing wherein the publishing needs of the writer are all taken care of by the publishing house, a self-published author has to handle everything. Which makes it a very difficult undertaking. In truth a self-published writer faces more challenges than a traditionally published one. But this does not mean you can’t succeed.