With my book, The Illuminator’s Gift, releasing on Amazon in just 9 days, I’m almost done with this whirlwind publishing process. Not much time to sit back and relax yet, but it does give me pause to ask myself: is the self-publishing journey worth it?
Though the process isn’t yet finished, I’d say quite confidently, yes. Here are five reasons I’m happy (so far) with the decision to self-publish:
1. I like a job where I get to wear a lot of hats. As you may know, when I was in kindergarten, I wanted to grow up to be EVERYTHING. Little did I know that I’d get my wish. Since jumping into self-publishing, I’ve gotten to dabble in tax and copyright law and dabble in typography, write contracts and write PR materials, learn the difference between a domain name and a web host and learn the difference between watercolor and acrylic paint. I’ve found myself good at some of these things and bad at others, but it’s all an adventure.
2. It’s been a real blessing and privilege to work with friends instead of New York businesspeople (nothing against them). And this is not only because it’s nice to have a say in the final look and feel of my book. It’s also nice to take breaks from spacing ellipses and evaluating thumbnails to chat about church, relationships, travels. To compare coffee flavors and car gas mileage. To make excited noises about the beauty we’re co-creating. To work alongside other young creatives looking for a place to penetrate the forest canopy.
3. Going to “the publishing house” in my pajamas is a pretty cushy perk! Especially when I contract a very obnoxious illness just weeks before the release date.
4. I’m watching myself develop new traits, from learning the art of the diplomatic e-mail, to accurately budgeting time and money, to negotiating mutually beneficial agreements, to multitasking effectively, to making important decisions without dwelling or worrying. Some of these new skills go against my natural grain. But self-publishing a book that’s very close to my heart has given me the necessary push to face some fears and grow up a little more.
5. On December 2nd, I plan to be viewing my published book on Amazon.com. With a traditional publisher, my five-years-in-the-making manuscript could have waited an additional year or more to see the light of day. Publishing a book in seven weeks is definitely not something I recommend trying at home or plan on repeating, but with self-publishing, it can be done. All the concentrated labor and anguish will be over very soon, and it will be worth it to hold that sweet, 6×9 rectangle of paper and fresh ink in my hands.
The Illuminator’s Gift will be available on Amazon.com December 2nd! In the meanwhile, I’d be delighted to have you sign up for my e-mail newsletter, like my Facebook page, or follow on Twitter using the buttons in the right sidebar 🙂