Novel Publicity & Co: A Step-by-Step Guide

Today, my blog tour has taken me to Novel Publicity & Co, where I’ve written Editors and designers and distribution, oh my! A step-by-step guide to self-publishing your book.

Here’s an excerpt:

Create the Package

The look of a physical book, including the cover, format, paper quality, and other elements, is called “the package” of the book. The choices you make at this stage will create readers’ first impression of your book. The package of the book telegraphs a lot to readers, even if the author or publisher isn’t aware of what a cover or other elements of the package implies.

Finding a good cover designer is one of the most important decisions at this stage. Readers are fairly sensitive to design, and if the quality of the cover is poor, readers will often assume that the quality of the writing is similarly poor. Make sure to look at the designer’s other work before hiring her. If you’ve written a genre novel like romance or science fiction, try to find a designer who has worked in the genres, as there are some very specific expectations for what a romance or sci-fi cover will look like.

When you’re working with the designer, find five or ten samples of covers you like in your book’s category, and figure out why you like them. If you give designers concrete design samples to use as a guide, it can really help you get the aesthetic you’re looking for.

Other aspects of the book’s package include the title and subtitle, any endorsement quotes, whether you use matte or glossy laminate on the cover stock, the quality and color of the paper, and many additional considerations. The book’s package is the first marketing tool in your arsenal, so make sure you dedicate the time and resources to making sure it’s very good.

The blog seems like a great resource for writers and people who are publishing and promoting their work. There is advice on writing, publishing, social media, and an Ask the Editor feature that dispels confusion about puzzling subjects such as When to Use an Em Dash.

My step-by-step guide leaves a LOT out, but it’s a good approximate overview for pieces of the publishing puzzle. There is a lot more detail in my book, The Insider’s Guide to Book Publishing Success. The Search Inside feature on Amazon is up now, so you can browse around inside it if you want to see what’s in there.


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