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Chris A. Baird | February 21, 2021
How Hard Is Self-Publishing?

After writing your book you've probably been thinking about the next step and putting it onto the market is the answer. But there are a lot of confusions and frustrations during this process that will leave you asking how hard is self-publishing?

Back And Forth

Today's question has three answers and you're going to want to stick around for the third answer. Because it's a secret as to how self-publishing can be made very easy after a little bit of time. So let's get into it.

The question that was sent to me today was, how hard is self-publishing? Now the person who asked this is wondering a little bit about you've got a book, you've already written or you're looking at writing and you want to get it onto the market.

But you want to self-publish it as opposed to going with a traditional publisher. And as you start to think and start to explore, it can begin to become very confusing. You can see an awful lot of options available.

In terms of the tools, the distribution routes, the formats that your books are going to be available in, and how exactly you use all of this stuff to put it together to successfully get your book onto the market.

Then we start marketing your book with ads, with all social media marketing, and content marketing. It's very confusing, all of the different options. So it begins to seem extremely difficult to self-publish if you want to get started on it.

That is what we're going to hit today, whether or not it is or has to be all that difficult. But before we get into the answers, check out my free Self-Publishing Checklist. To make sure that you are not skipping any of the important steps necessary to win the self-publishing game.

So let's get into it. Back and forth, when I first got started, I already got my Kindle book onto the market. I had made several self-publishing decisions and choices and started to see some sales coming in.

Check out this related article: Should You Self Publish With Amazon KDP?

And now, it was time for me to start making real money which is through the paperbacks and later on audiobooks and such. But for this particular story, when I first got started with the paperback books, I was thinking well how hard could it be?

So I figured, well I'll pay somebody on Fiverr to create a cover for my paperback book. At the time, it was on CreateSpace which is now known as KDP Print. So it's Kindle Direct Publishing but the print version.

And so what you're able then to do is that you pay somebody on Fiverr and they can produce a cover for you. Now I just grabbed some random person. I gave them my Kindle cover which I now use Fiverr also to produce that.

When they got my cover, they sent me back something that I submitted to CreateSpace. Then what happened is that I attempted to do it myself. The thing was that when I sent it in, it got rejected by CreateSpace.

The Hard Part

I attempted to try to see if I could take the cover and the templates that are available from Amazon to make this work. So I took the cover and I used a photoshopping program called GIMP which is free.

I tried to position it and then I sent it into Amazon or CreateSpace at the time. They rejected it and then they sent it back to me. I tried to fix it again and again I sent it back to them and they rejected it yet again.

We continue this back and forth game as I'm trying to get my cover accepted but nothing I'm doing seems to be working. So after some time, I finally figured out how to make GIMP work. Pulling in the templates and working with layers.

Adjusting and moving stuff around and understanding terms like bleed and all sorts of things like that. At that point, it became super easy. And from that point on, I understood exactly what to do.

How to take my Kindle cover which I had gotten done also on Fiverr. But not only did I find it to be unbelievably simple to do the covers, but I also trained my virtual assistants as well so that I wouldn't even have to do this task.

I could just give other people the task and then they would be able to put the covers together. But I of course needed to know how to do it myself first and that was a bit of a challenge.

Check out this related article:  Self-Publish For Under $199!

The interesting part is after I figured out the one cover on CreateSpace or KDP Print, how to get that cover done, suddenly my hardback covers for Lulu or my other paperback covers for Ingram Spark became very easy. Because they also have templates and you can just take it.

You put your cover there, you can even use the same text that you have on the back of your original cover that you're using for Amazon's print version. And then the same with the spine, it takes a little bit of work but it's the same tasks.

So they were not that much of a challenge either once I had that core skill set done. Since then, I've put out tons of books over nearly 200 books since that point. And that's one of the key things that I have learned.

So how hard is self-publishing? Well, the answer is it is very hard, it's extremely difficult to self-publish in the beginning. And that is one of the key issues that you need to remember. Getting started is the hard part.

It's just starting and figuring these things out. And everything gets easier as you go if it's broken down into smaller pieces. So we're not doing everything at once, we're simply focusing on one thing at a time.

Have Time For Your MIT

We're breaking it into the smallest division there. Like I repeat over and over, you should start with your Kindle book. If you don't have a Kindle book out, then don't focus on anything else because this is a head game. Motivation is the thing and you're going to lose.

One of the secret answer for today it's that if you want to make sure that it isn't so hard, you're going to need to make sure you do not burn yourself out. And that means you need to dedicate a certain amount of time each day that you're going to use for your "Most Important Task" in this process or your MIT.

You're going to keep on going until that task gets easy. And you're saying "I don't really understand how to do covers or converting my files to Mobi files". Or many of these other things that are very confusing when you're first getting started.

My answer to you is to use a certain amount of time each day. Follow people who can tell you how to go about doing this. That's one of the things we try here which is to break things down and keep it simple.

Check out this related article: This One Mistake Will Cost You $1000s!

By following through a little bit each day, each of these steps becomes easier and easier. Then we're ready for the next step which will be the covers. None of these steps are easy, they're all hard when we first start because we have never done it before.

But by moving through the steps nice and easy, we're able to make progress. If you find that you aren't able to make progress, you always can hire a coach. I do Coaching for many students to help motivate you.

To help ensure that you're on the right track and to guide the direction that things are going in. You just have to let me know if you need any help on that and I will check to see if I have any available spots.

But otherwise, that also can be a very helpful way of making progress on your books. If you're finding it to be too difficult to motivate yourself or knowing what to do next. So, how hard is self-publishing?

Do you find self-publishing to be hard? If you do, in the comments below write "yes" and if you find no it's easy for you to self-publish, then write "no". That will really help me out.

To make sure I understand where you are coming from. So that I can create blogs and videos that will help you better in the future. And check out my other blogs and videos for more answers to your self-publishing questions.

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