Yep, I’ve decided to once again self-publish — this time it’s mystery novel Number Four! Instead of sending out queries on Psychobabble to forty or fifty carefully selected literary agents as I’ve done in the past, I only reached out to half that number. When I failed to receive a bite, I did not flush my word marbles down the toilet. That’s because a psychic I trust told me my best chance to get my newest psychological suspense novel up and running was to go the self-publishing route.
This psychic was one year off about when my daughter would get pregnant, so you’d think I would have learned my lesson. But in my heart — as well as in my accumulated knowledge base — I know self-publishing is the correct choice for me.
I’ve already had a psychologist, a mystery author, and several Beta readers (mystery fans) read and critique my manuscript. Although I was unable to hook CPD detectives to review my manuscript for accuracy, I still can hit up detectives I’ve met through the Sheriff’s Citizens Police Academy in North Carolina. (Notice I’ve said “met,” as in you gotta do the footwork and can’t just rely on the Internet and CSI.)
For the back cover, I plan to get book blurbs by the psychologist and mystery author. Writing a tantalizing couple of paragraphs that will hook the reader to read the book is more tricky and takes me days to accomplish. (I ask my book editor to critique those paragraphs before proceeding.)
Stay tuned for my next post on my further adventures in self-publishing! Be sure to send me your comments or questions, too!
I am a perfectionist when self-publishing — okay, maybe not right now at 2:59 a.m. when I can’t sleep, but generally speaking! So before giving birth to my third mystery novel #Fatal Reaction on Valentines Day 2014, I edited and re-edited a hundred times over. Caution: Sleep deprivation causes me to exaggerate.
I drove my developmental/copy editor #Diane Piron-Gelman (firstname.lastname@example.org) nuts with my formatting changes. And #Gin Kiser, graphic design artist for my book cover (email@example.com) actually went into labor upon completing the final edit of several edits! No, Gin did not choose to go into labor as a less painful alternative!
My drive for perfection didn’t end with the book’s publication. I was going to be doing a speaking gig and planned to distribute post card-sized copies of the front and back book cover of #Fatal Reaction. Off to #Office Max I went! A week later, upon questioning veteran mystery author #Marilyn Meredith, I learned that an author can name the town, but not the authentic location, that a fictional crime took place. Thankfully, #Office Max changed two words on the back-side of the post card. My speaking gig had already come and gone. But when I speak/book sign at #Printers Row Literary Fest in Chicago on June 7, I’ll be distributing the new post card.
My point is that an author must be both diligent and vigilant in managing the final product that goes out into the book world. A self-published book should be written, formatted, and marketed as accurately as that of a big publisher — and sometimes better because the author’s professional reputation is at stake.