More and more writers are becoming published authors. Some start with blogs, writers’ groups, and lifelong dreams. Traditional publishing can be difficult to break into, especially if you’re not already an established author. So how are new authors getting their books into the competitive market without an agent or a supportive publishing house?
Self-publishing has taken the book world by storm, and this is because self-published books are an easy way to bring attention to a new author and get their books to readers. The easiest way for authors to do this is to self-publish their works as ebooks. Steven Spatz from The Writing Cooperative says this allows the author to sell their book for a relatively low price, drawing a large readership, and permits the author to market their book the way they think is best. They can sell their ebook as a ninety-nine-cent Kindle option, provide free snippets online, and monitor their own previews. One author who did this, Andy Weir, didn’t meet expected sales with his first book. Because of this, he posted free chapters of it to his personal website in order to obtain an audience and introduce them to his work. He went on to sell his ebook original to Crown Publishing for a large sum.
In addition to getting their names out there through self-publishing, authors also benefit from lower production costs. Publishing an ebook is significantly cheaper than publishing in print. This makes ebooks more convenient for first-time authors in many ways. If their work doesn’t reach its potential the first time around, they won’t be dumped by an agent or lose profit. This gives them another opportunity to establish themselves in the market for their next book. Mike Omer is one author who took advantage of this opportunity. He was relatively unknown until his sales on Amazon’s “Prime Day” propelled his career forward. According to Steven Spatz, on this day alone he sold more books than authors like James Patterson.
The absence of an agent and editor also allows the author to build their own fan base and distribute their books as they see fit. If an author knows their niche, and if they have a knack for marketing, they can target their audience early on and cheaply promote their book. According to IngramSpark staff, in the long run (and if it is done correctly), this will benefit the author and provide them with a wide readership for future publications. Understanding their platform will allow a self-publishing author to succeed and go from blog writer to New York Times best-selling author.
Self-publishing is thriving and growing by the day. Many authors hoping to make the best-seller list would likely never have the chance for success without self-publishing, and especially without ebooks. Posting free chapters online or publishing an ebook can not only give an author name recognition but also create a success story that lasts for ages. As sales continue to rise and more and more writers break into the market via ebooks, there is sure to be a continual rise in self-published works by authors digging their way to creative fame.