One of my author friends from Go Teen Writers, Giselle Abreu, asked me to answer some questions about self-publishing for her school research paper. I was happy to oblige and am posting my interview here.
1. What made you want to self-publish?
I wanted complete control over my book’s creative process: editing, formatting, cover design, etc.
2. What was the process of self-publishing like?
Very long. I think that was due to some unforeseen complications to my original timeline (I was editing up until the very last minute, even after getting a cover design and needed to reformat each time).
3. What kind of server/company did you use to self-publish (like CreateSpace, etc…)? Has that affected your experience any?
CreateSpace. I am a very DIY type of person. The only thing I really outsourced was the cover design, but even then I made the final decisions. CreateSpace gave me the freedom to do everything on my own while also offering paid assistance if necessary. I think it’s wonderful for people who are willing to put in the time and research to create a great product.
4. What would you say is the best part of being self-published?
It’s very rewarding to say you published a book, even more so to say that you were in charge of every challenging stage.
5. What would you say is the worst part of being self-published?
While it’s a source of pride for me, there is still a stigma against self-published authors. It seems to be diminishing now, but remnants of it are still there. When you self-publish, you have to hold yourself to a higher standard of production (especially editing) than everyone else (including traditionally published books—I find typos and wrong formatting in them all the time).
6. A major stereotype of self-published authors goes around that basically says any self-published books aren’t worth reading because they haven’t gone through ‘professionals.’ Do you feel you’ve beaten that stereotype, how?
I like to think that I’ve personally beaten the stereotype. I spent hours on formatting and editing and designing. My readers haven’t complained of grammatical or spelling errors (which can run rampant on ill-produced self-published books), so I think I’ve done really well.
7. Would you suggest other writers get self-published, and why?
I think it’s a great option, but I would only recommend self-publishing to the entrepreneurial-spirited writer who is willing to practically triple (or more) their time investment to one book. It’s very possible to write multiple books at a time, and that is another challenge, as well as promoting, that self-publishers have to juggle extremely well. It’s really about organization, prioritizing, and creative vision.