This is a guest post by Deanna Proach:
My Experience as a Self-Published Author
"It's the best time to be published," said Bob Meyer at this year's writers conference in Surrey, British Columbia. In one way, he is right. It is the best time to be a published author because there are so many new ways for aspiring authors to get their books published. Self-publishing, e-format and paperback have become the norm, to the point where other authors would have you believe that it's the only way to go.
Self-publishing is not the only way to go. Many writers are still querying literary agents with the goal to strike it rich on their first book. But when you're starting out and you have no platform to boost your name, you might want to consider self-publishing. There are several book services out there that help new authors with the cover art, editing and formatting of their books. Then, there are companies that specialize in book promotion and marketing.
I went that route with Day of Revenge. The one good thing about self-publishing is that it gives you control over your creative work. If you work with a company like I did, the only task you are required to do is the marketing and promotion of your book. And, believe me. That is no easy task, especially when you have a meager web presence.
My experience as a self-published author has, overall been good. I've landed a number of internet radio interviews with Blog Talk Radio hosts, two speaking gigs (unpaid) and even organized four book signings: two in Penticton and two on the Sunshine Coast, the community where I reside. I consider my book launch as one of the book signing events. Yes, I made some very good connections. I have even written a personal story that will be published in another author's book. Her name is Christina Schlachter and she is a renowned motivational speaker.
I'm so thankful to have made these connections because I know that they will provide my second novel To be Maria with a nice platform. But, it is another story for Day of Revenge. I had no help with the marketing and I had no previous experience in marketing. So, getting it to sell well has been a struggle from the word go. Regardless, I have learned a lot from this first experience and my writing skills have improved dramatically; although, that probably has more to do with the fact that I switched to contemporary young adult, a genre I discovered I was most comfortable writing in.
So, what does all this have to do with self-publishing? Let's face it. In this bad economy, most prefer to read works from well-known authors. While self publishing does offer some benefits, it is not profitable. If you feel strongly about your novel, have received positive feedback from readers and other writers and are determined to make a handsome living from your books, then I strongly encourage you to seek out an agent or small royalty-paying press.
To learn more about Deanna Proach, you can visit her blog, http://desstories.blogspot.com or her website at www.deannaproach.com.