Indie Author Life,  Writing Journey

The DIY Publishing Diary: Volume Six

NO REST FOR THE WICKED comes out in two weeks!! OMG! 😀

I’ve learned a lot about timing these last several weeks. For one, I realized that had I known what I was doing, I could have released my book a month earlier. But you know what “they” say, I rather have too much time to prepare than not enough. It’s like when I’m traveling, and I have no idea where I’m going, I like to leave early in case I get lost along the way. A girl gets lost sometimes.

This month, I decided to go with IngramSpark instead of using NookPress. (I know, right! Less than one month out, and I freaking changed something!) This is for a couple of reasons, most of them having to do with future headache potential. But I just feel better about it overall. Plus, I’ll have the opportunity to have print book preorders this way, and that just makes me happy.

I also decided to de-list my book with Kobo’s direct platform and use Smashwords for Kobo distribution instead. I signed up with Smashwords after signing up to Kobo Writing Life, because I was originally going to go direct with most retailers. But after dealing with Apple for a day (I have zero patience sometimes), I signed up for Smashwords to simplify my life. I changed away from NookPress’s digital platform immediately because it’s terrible. That left Kobo. I flip-flopped over it for about a week, but I made the change last night.

Here are some things I’m going to do differently next time:

  • I’m not going to change my mind 50 times. The official list of companies I’m using is Amazon KDP, Smashwords, and IngramSpark. I’ll use Createspace if I have to, but the plan is to go through Ingram. I didn’t set a super low wholesaler discount, but it’s low enough that the royalty difference isn’t big enough to be worth the extra effort it would take to use Createspace. Plus, I really do like the quality of Ingram just a tiny bit better, so hopefully the book will show up for sale by release day and Amazon won’t pitch a fit about the availability.

  • I honestly think six weeks of lead time is going to be plenty for the next book. I’ve had about 10 weeks to get ready this go around, which would have been way too much time had I known what I was doing and hadn’t made so many mistakes. Since we live and learn, I shouldn’t make those same mistakes next time or change my mind so much. 🙂

  • I’m going to have my next cover reveal about 4 weeks out instead of 8. Maybe 6. It depends on how long it takes my proofreader, since I also decided to change editors for the next book. It wasn’t an unhappy thing. I was trying to cut my overall costs to give me more wiggle room, since I forgot about a number of expenses this go around, namely shipping. Changing editors was the easier way to do that. As of right now, I’m significantly under budget for my projected expenses. ^_^ Of course the new editors may be terrible, but people say great things about them, I like them as people so far, and I think they’re worth a try. I’ll have one editor doing content and copy editing and a separate editor doing proofreading.

Even though I told myself to stop, I watched some more webinars. Haha. I don’t know how much it’s helping, but it makes me feel a little better.

If you’re interested in going indie or if you’ve already on that route, Publishing Profits Podcast is a really good resource for indie-world news. He interviews self-published, hybrid, and some traditionally published authors about all kinds of publishing topics. There’s something for every genre and detailed show notes so you can pick and choose what to listen to.

Most of the headaches I’ve had were caused by tiny technical things that I didn’t know. People forget to tell you the small things. I also didn’t know that I needed a (free) publisher account with Smashwords in order for my publisher name to show up on the sales pages. This was a surprisingly easy fix though. And necessary, because I’m OCD, and while we largely get along, the publisher has to be uniform across the different sites or I’m going to obsess about it.

I’ve also been experimenting with blog tour companies. So far, it hasn’t been unpleasant, but I have my release day stuff and at least one other company, maybe two, that I want to try with my next book before I draw any final conclusions on what I think about them.

Okay. I’m ready for my book to come out now. Haha. ^_^



  • Tonja Drecker

    So if I ever self-publish, I’ll be slamming your inbox w/ hundreds of questions 😉 I don’t blame you for leaving more time the first time around. It takes a couple of rounds to get anything just right, and who knows what surprises will pop up. Great idea to keep things as easy for yourself as possible too. Who needs more headaches? As to tour companies, I’ll whisper xpresso at you for several reasons. There are several others who are really organized, friendly and do give their best, but this one definitely has a further reach. I can’t wait for your release day!!!

    • Krystal Jane

      Good to know! Sticking with one company would definitely make my tour decisions easier in the future.

      If you do decide, totally email away! I wouldn’t have gotten very far on my own, so I’m happy pass on anything I can! ^_^

  • Sunflower Michelle

    I can’t wait for your book to come out either!

    Also, I’m going to pick your brain the next time I release something, because if it’s New Bride, it’s going to be a real novel-sized thing, which is different than slapping up a novella and a short in about a week.

    That’s interesting that you went through Smashwords for Kobo instead of Writing Life. I’ve gone through Draft2Digital through iBooks and B&N and I had Kobo there originally, but I took it off once I realized that it’s on US Kobo but not international Kobo through them or something. I re-uploaded through writing life, but I’ve not seen any sales there in months.

    But having less royalty statements coming at you might be easier for ye olde spreasheet, too.

    • Krystal Jane

      Yes! Pick the brain! I’d love to help some if I can. You pointed me in a lot of directions. ^_^ I can say for certain that my book is listed on the Canadian site with the Canadian price. Of course I’d have to go to the US site to buy it because that’s where I live. Lol! I was going to use Draft2Digital, but Smashwords won the throw down since I would be uploading just an ePub file anyway.

  • tyreanmartinson

    Wow! Way to go, and thanks for all of the info. I switched to using Smashwords for Nook and Kobo uploads a while back, too and it certainly de-stressed some of my upload work. I haven’t used IngramSpark – (puts that back on the to-do list) – but I will. 🙂
    Happy planning and writing and publishing!

    • Krystal Jane

      Thank you! ^_^ I almost didn’t use Smashwords because of the style-guide, but I ended up uploading an ePub file, so I didn’t have any problems at all. Going through fewer companies will also save me a lot of the running around for the next book that I had done with this one.

  • A.S. Akkalon

    I certainly get your reasons for allowing some extra time. You’re right, sometimes a girl does get lost. The whole self-publishing thing sounds so overwhelming – it must be exciting (and a relief) to be nearly there. All the best for release day!

    • Krystal Jane

      It was overwhelming at times! LOL! But once I started, it was like, might as well keep going. 🙂 The relief set in once all the technical work was done. Now, I’m just bouncing off the walls a little bit. ^_^

  • Thea Landen

    I don’t have any personal experience with it (luckily), but just about everything I’ve heard about Apple + publishing indicates it’s a giant mess that no one likes dealing with. Once I got the hang of Smashwords, I was more than happy to let them deal with distribution.

    I hear you on too much time being a much better problem to have than not enough time, but waiting stinks and it is sometimes tricky to work out other timing issues. You’ll be fine, though!

    • Krystal Jane

      Timing is definitely tricky. Thanks for the vote of confidence! ^_^ I sent about three emails to Apple trying to figure out their platform. I’m not sure why I thought it was a good idea to go direct in the first place, but I’m really glad I started the research process in the fall!

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