When I started writing my first book it was intended as an autobiography, primarily for my daughter. As the book evolved, (we think we’re writing them, but they take on a life of their own) I found myself putting in information that would help people with an interest in taking up the sports I’ve been involved with, I also found myself including business ideas and revealing the pitfalls I’d fallen into, for others to avoid.
I included sections or even an entire chapter on people who’ve inspired me and historical information on things like swing dancing, until it became, as well as a biography a pot-pourri on all sorts of topics, activities and people, hence the title. I also realised that whilst I’m not famous, nor the most interesting person on the planet, that my book might interest other people. I realised you don’t have to be famous to be interesting, to live life to the full or to have something to say.
In fact, traditional publishers will happily publish a biography of a twenty something footballer, solely on the basis that he’s famous, has fans and because they the publishers will undoubtedly make money. Perhaps the fans are happy with just the story of said footballers childhood and school days and how he got spotted by a talent scout and got rich, but the fact is that there are legions of non famous people out there with far more interesting stories and far more experience of life.
Self publishing and the internet have democratised the whole process and so I went ahead and published my first book and now also offer advice to other writers who want to take the same path. Like all things, self publishing has advantages and disadvantages. The advantages are that it’s simple and inexpensive to take your book to market. Digital printing means paper is not wasted and it’s good for the environment. Another advantage is that the book can remain on the market for your entire lifetime and beyond, earning royalties for you and your offspring or other beneficiaries, you could leave the royalties to charity even – it need never go out of print.
Disadvantages are few; people perceive that a conventional publisher will promote their work for them, but this is rarely the case for a new unknown writer, you still have to push it yourself and if you’re not swiftly successful your book may be relegated to discount stores with remainders getting pulped – then try and get another deal! Self publish and you have the book on the market, you can then promote it whenever and however suits you and your lifestyle, now or in the future. No instant success is not a problem, a failure, or a stigma. If you do become known later sales may suddenly take off. And if you do become successful, conventional publishers may then approach you – and that’s an entirely different negotiation!
I hope you enjoy my first foray into print and e-book (an audio book is also ready). Of Land, Sea And Sky is readily available on Amazon and maybe it will inspire you to take up a new activity, or write your own first book. I hope it stimulates you!
Audio Book Now Available
This is a digital download in MP3 format, not a physical product
Self publishing certainly got my creative juices flowing and I found I enjoy writing. I currently have eight more books in the planning stage, including two novels. More will certainly follow the three books I have published to date, fiction and non fiction, but I won’t be rushing them.