Reality check

"Self-publishing" means different things to different people. Here's what I mean: You, the author, have done your homework. You have educated yourself about the publishing process, either through previous experience with publishing or by reading some of the guides available to authors. You are prepared to invest the money required to bring your book to the market and to promote it, too. You understand that there are parts of the publishing process for which you should engage professionals and that you are going to have to pay those professionals for their services.

Publishing is a business, and you have to approach it in a businesslike way to succeed at it. Like any business, it has risks. The biggest risk is going to be the expense of producing a book that nobody is interested in buying. For that reason, as committed as you may be to the project, you should seek out unbiased opinions from people who don't know you personally.

Let's be clear. Publishing your own book is not cheap. It can cost as little as, say, remodeling your bathroom and as much as a new kitchen. And if your family is pressing you to remodel the bathroom or kitchen, that's probably a better place to spend the money. But if you have money you can risk on publishing your book, then you can potentially earn a substantial return on your investment. As an aside, commercial publishers have to make a similar risk calculation and, further, have to justify their actions to their stockholders. This often leads to frustration and misunderstanding on the part of authors who wonder why their manuscripts are rejected or why they are offered so little in the way of royalties.

Beyond the investment in dollars, you have to be prepared to invest a lot of time in marketing your book if you intend for it to be successful commercially. (If you are producing a book to give away or to circulate among a few dozen academic colleagues, this consideration does not apply.)

How I can help

I offer a number of services to publishers and self-publishers:

  • Project management—I can help you throughout the publishing process with scheduling and executing the many pedestrian but necessary steps to get you from finished manuscript to published book. You do what you do best and let me handle the rest. You will be involved in decision-making at every stage. There is no magic here; these are all things you can do yourself if you prefer. But I have more experience than you do and can help you avoid common pitfalls. I also have access to reliable resources for specialized tasks such as designing the book's cover and indexing the book.
  • Evaluation—I can review your manuscript and provide an objective critique covering the writing quality, organization and completeness of the content, and prospects in the marketplace.
  • Editing—I can provide development editing, copy editing, and fact checking services, as needed. I have over four decades of editing experience.
  • Ghostwriting—Do you have a story to tell, experience to share, knowledge to impart? Maybe you have a book inside you but you know you're not really a writer. That's okay. I can help you shape your ideas into a book.
  • Design, typography, and composition—Your unique book deserves a unique design that is appropriate to its content. I will work with you to develop that unique design and render your book as finished pages, ready to print. This can include creating illustrations from your sketches; rendering equations, tables, and other complicated composition; designing and laying out all kinds of pages; and whatever else is needed for your project.
  • Promotional materials—You can call on me to design the letterhead for your publishing imprint; write or edit your cover letters, news releases, and other promotional materials; design posters and point-of-purchase display materials for your book tour; and arrange for highest quality production of all these materials.

Whenever you're ready…

Let's talk.

Write for a free quote. Please attach your manuscript and indicate what services you are interested in having me provide.