Do you have Self-Publishing or Poetry Questions for The PBS Blog?
Send me your emails at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will answer them live on my blog. Be sure to send me your contact information so we know where to find you. In the meantime, let’s take a look at our first question:
“As a Self-Publisher, do you think it’s worth it to try to get your books into the bookstores?”
In my opinion, No.
Put it this way: A Self-Publisher is a manufacturer. Bookstores are retailers. In the end I suppose it’s about one’s individual definition of success, but in truth, brick and mortars like Wal-Mart may get you the attention you need and the popularity, but you make more money distributing your books yourself even if its by way of POD publishing. You may not exactly be “making it rain”, but you have the potential to receive a royalty check for the number of books you sold. And naturally, the more books you produce, the more money you have the potential to make. You’ll get royalties from every book every month depending on which ones sold and how many of them sold the month prior. My advice is to simply skip the bookstore thing because everything is online. Just write and do some online self-promotion. There is however an offline community. But they can be driven to your electronic shelves in a number of ways (radio interviews, local newspapers, book signings, speaking events, etc.). Another way to consider, is to try to get your books into the libraries and into the Schools instead of the book stores. I say Library not necessarily for the money. I say the library because although everything is online, the offline community is still very much active in the libraries. Not only are computers available, but they have access to hundreds of books freely with a Library card and they can request your book if they know that it exists. That’s the focus I’m on now per offline promotion, among other things, visiting the libraries and following the protocol necessary to get into the system. As well as communicating with your local schools and getting into their systems. Again, you may not make a lot of money but the word of mouth on your new hot masterpiece will sell itself. You’ll get your book into the hands of the people and that is where you want it to be.