Did you know…?
• Of all books published in the UK 2015, 7% were self-published and 22% of these were e-books. There has been a steady increase over recent years.
• In 2015, the volume of self-published books in the UK was 24 million. Double the amount in 2012.
• UK shoppers purchase 50% of books on-line

Fiona’s passion for her subject shines through from the beginning of her talk and she’s a lady who clearly knows her subject field. She went on to talk about:

• Agencies
• ISBNs
• Legal Deposit
• Distribution
• Promotion

There was a lively discussion as to why those present were thinking about self-publishing as opposed to traditional publishing and the benefits included:

• Upside
o Full control over how your book looks
o More control over the marketing and distribution.
o You have the ‘kudos’ of being a published writer
o You have the knowledge of how to continue to self-publish
o You receive all profits
• Downside
o It can be expensive – editors, printers, designers and distribution
o It is a lot of work

E-publishing

• E-publishing is publishing online. It is an ideal tool for business marketing purposes of manuscripts of 40 pages or less.
• Easier to promote if you know your target audience and the electronic device they most commonly use.
• The main formats are flow and fixed. Flow means the text will flow around images and is suitable for text where the images do not have to relate to certain text. Fixed is suitable where text relates to tables and images directly, however, this limits the e-publishing software you can use. It is important to know what layout you want to use and what features you want your reader to be able to use when choosing an e-publishing software. Some, like ePub, will allow both fixed and, what it terms as ‘standard’ or flow layout.

Agencies

For a fee, you can send your book to a self-publishing agency or agent, such as Matador. They will help with editing, proofreading and the design. They also have well-established distribution channels.

Agencies will not publish every book they see though as they need to keep their reputation for quality as in this field, reputation is key.

ISBNs

• An ISBN is needed if you want to track sales through more than one distribution channel.
• Some bookstores / distribution lists will not stock / list your book / e-book unless it has an ISBN.
• An ISBN makes your book / e-book easier to find.
• At a recent Self-Publishing Conference in May 2016, the sum of £99.00 was given per ISBN number. Purchasing in bulk will reduce the price.
• ISBNs may be purchased from Nielsen.
• To find out more, follow this link: http://www.isbn.org/faqs_general_questions

Legal Deposit

• When publishing any e-book, pamphlet, magazine, newspaper, sheet music or map for public consumption, whether it’s free or sold, one copy of each issue released must be sent to the British library within one year of publication.
• Five other libraries are entitled to request a free copy within one year of publication:
o the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford
o Cambridge University Library
o the National Library of Scotland
o the Library of Trinity College, Dublin and the
o National Library of Wales

Distribution

There are several ways to market your own book / e-book:
• Via your own website and social media channels
• Approach bookstores and libraries. Do make an appointment first and read their submissions guidelines ahead of the meeting.
• Use a listing service provided by, for example, Nielsen. They have a free basic service and an enhanced service and the list will be received by bookstores and libraries who can then order your book directly from you, from your agency or through Nielsen.
• Use the listing service provided by your self-publishing agency.

The two most commonly used formats are random draw contests and best offer contests that can be created using a

Top Tips for the sign up form are:
• Keep it short! Less is more…
• Offer feedback from other subscribers and tell them what amazing information they can expect!
• Make it aesthetically pleasing and place key information on the left

Promoting your Book!

• Social Media – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Blogging
• Website
• Reviews
• Radio, newspapers, public speaking
• Taking advantage of topical content / current affairs
• Book signings and readings

Further Key points: Self-Publishing

• Don’t rely on friends and family to edit your book. You will benefit tenfold from a trained eye to not only help with grammar and spelling but also continuity, suitability for target audience, legal issues and so on.
• Reputation is of paramount importance to good editors.
• Self-published e-books are now being nominated for literary prizes.
• Publishing began with self-publishing! Look at Shakespeare and Chaucer…
• Virginia Woolf was published by Hogarth Press, a publishing imprint set up by herself and her husband in 1917.

Fiona concluded the talk with some information about her most recent project: The Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends’ Project. This is an e-book resource for South Staffordshire and the wider West Midlands for people affected by or living with dementia. The book has been written from interviews students of Wolgarston High School in Penkridge conducted with people living with dementia, and some of the professionals who provide support in this field. People talked of how they learnt they or their loved one was diagnosed with dementia, the differences it had made to their lives and how they continued to live well. The book has been funded by the South Staffordshire Partnership and the Alzheimer’s Society.

Fiona Doney is a self-confessed bookworm and English aficionado who loves nothing more than helping people and businesses write creatively and effectively. Fiona moved from a successful career in the corporate world to begin freelance editing and writing in 2003. She started trading under the name Kanyini in 2013 and began running creative and business writing workshops in 2015. See her website at kanyini.co.uk or email fiona.doney@kanyini.co.uk for further information.

Written by Nikki Ayton
Project Manager for the Optimising Business Broadband (OBB) Project
Work Website: www.optimisingbusinessbroadband.co.uk
Twitter: @OBBshropstaffs LinkedIn: optimisingbusinessbroadband
Email: nikki.ayton@shropshire.gov.uk
There continues to be a vast amount of free information on the OBB website: www.optimisingbusinessbroadband.co.uk
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