How to Publish Your Own Book [In 10 Steps]

Until recently, publishing a book was always done through an agent. In fact, most publishing companies will never touch a manuscript if it doesn’t come from an agent. With this mindset, no one thought it wise to research how to publish your own book.

Even if publishers agreed, they would want to publish it to sell in bookstores, which might not always be what you want.

Well, times have changed and there’s a way for you to learn how to publish your own book. This is not just about succeeding with publishing, it will help you to become an excellent author with well-deserved bestseller status someday.

There are practical steps that will help you to learn how to publish your own book with ease:

You Don’t Need an Agent to Publish Your Own Book

It is possible to publish your own book without needing an agent. In fact, many self-published authors are now being called up by big publishing companies with some great offers. So, if you have been grumbling and seeking ways to land a publisher without any luck, it is time to stop wasting time. Head out now and learn the basics of how to publish your own book. It can be a better option for some authors these days.

When it comes to knowing how to publish your own book, it might sound difficult but it is definitely possible. Self-publishing does require some skills such as researching, being persistent, and preserving. However, knowing how to publish your own book can still be better than attempting to go through an agent. So, don’t be dismayed when you encounter stumbling blocks, it is part of the success story, all you need do is to set your eyes on the goal and the benefits you stand to gain by knowing how to publish your own book.

Benefits of Knowing How to Publish Your Own Book

You might not be aware of what you stand to gain by publishing a book on your own. There are many advantages:

•    You will have total control of your published books

•    You have the rights to the cover page

•    You have absolute rights to your published books

•    The story remains yours and yours alone, no copyright infringement

•    The royalties accrued are yours

•    You do 100% of the editing with little or no external input

•    You devise your own marketing strategies and work solely with that, no hindrances from anywhere else

•    The cover design will be exactly what you want it to be

•    The deadline for every step of the publishing is solely up to you

Publish Your Own Book With a Template

Knowing how to publish your own book is a huge asset in the literary world these days. But, you can’t publish a book without first writing one.

Before diving into the steps to publishing, consider applying a template to the book you’re working on:

general fiction template

Whether you want a basic fiction template or one specific to your chosen genre, using one will no doubt take much of the pressure off the writing process.

The templates will walk you through the storyline step by step until your story has been perfectly crafted with no missing details.

How to Publish Your Book in 10 Steps

1. Know The Cost of Publishing Your Own Book

Just as we make some estimates when trying to carry out any project, we will apply the same to self-publishing. A lot of factors must be considered before getting the forecast right. So, the best bet is to find out the different costs of the elements that will give your book the best prospect.  These are costs you will know how to estimate as you learn how to publish your own book.

•    Printing cost. This has to do with the length of the book, the volume, and the papers to be used for hard copies.

•    Editing cost. This should also be considered when self-publishing. Are you using an expert in the field of your publication? What’s the number of editors you need to assess the book and the cost involved with each one?

•    Designing cost. This is another top cost to consider, do you need an excellent designer for both the interior and exterior of the book, or do you have the skills to do it yourself?

•    Marketing cost. This is basically about creating awareness for the published book. What are the means of advertising? if you are going to use paid services, what do the cost?

•    Miscellaneous: Unfortunately, there will be other minor costs that will come up during publishing, so allowances must be made too for little costs here and there.

2. Conceive the Idea

The first step on how to publish your own book is creating the plan in your head. Self-publishing needs you digging deep and brainstorming, on some idea that will lead you to write a good book.

Maybe you could start by asking yourself why you need to write a book. Look at your target audience. Is writing your skill, and does it need to be developed? Brainstorming on these points will help you conceive the idea for the book in a better way.

3. Start Drafting Your Book

Begin writing your ideas down, to avoid them evaporating from your head when you need them. It might not be organized at first but jot down as the inspiration comes. You can use these helpful tips:

•    Segment your writing time to avoid fatigue

•     Try to write at the same time each day to form a good writing habit

•     Create an outline for your book

•     Create temporary headings and subheadings for your story. You can change them later if need be so that you have an overview for each chapter.

•    Build your stamina to write for about an hour or two at a time.

When writing. ask yourself some questions and answer them earnestly to determine if you are on the right track:

•    Would this book be highly demanded by readers?

•     Would this book be impactful?

•     Can it solve a societal problem?

Get Feedback From Others as Well

Don’t just keep on writing to realize too late that you were writing a book that only you could read. Write a few chapters and give it to some knowledgeable people to read and give their feedback. There are many things you will gain from this:

•    You will be shown some of your mistakes

•     General errors and grammatical errors will be detected

•     You might be given a new perspective

•     You could get a better storyline if you heed the corrections and you will learn too, as you correct the errors

•    You will have a good feeling about your book. You will be able to publish your book with a better story.

4. Give Your Book a Title

Eventually, you will have to give your book a title. You might have had one right from the beginning, but now that you’ve seen the story play out a little, you may have an even better idea! To give a book its title consider the following:

•    Let the title be self-explanatory and easy to read

•    Give a simple title

•    Make the title creative and intriguing

5. Edit your Book

This is the backbone of your soon to published book. While some try to do it on their own, it is advisable to hire a good editor that will help make your book stand out. A bestseller should be devoid of any and all spelling, grammar, and syntax errors.

So, get an editor that will give you the best of editing and proofreading. Find one that understands your subject matter and is really interested in reading in what you have written. Give the editor ample time to go through your work, and do take all of their suggestions seriously.

6. Prepare Your Book Cover

One thing that will draw attention, is the cover. The book cover is like the mirror of a book, it gives a snapshot of the content. People know not to, but they still so often judge books by their covers. So, to get a good book cover work with the following steps:

•    Decide on a rough design or idea that you like

•    Design it yourself if you can, or hire a professional

•    Make sure the cover is clean and unique

•    Make a cover that is interesting enough to entice people to buy it

7. Format your Book

This is another step that will add professionalism to your book. A well-formatted book is easy to read and pleasing to the eye. Depending on your budget and the kind of book you are publishing you should be able to use the right formatting style. Correct formatting includes:

•    Indenting between paragraphs

•    Use of spaces that suit the type of book you have written

•   Using the correct alignment

•    Bolding where it is needed

•    Use of upper and lower cases where appropriate

•    Underlining where required.

You can use free resources if possible, but you may need to take it a step further and hire a professional to help you with the finishing touches.

8. Print-Publishing or eBook

This will depend on how you want it published – whether online or offline. If it is offline, you need to get your manuscript to a good publishing house to get it turned into hard copies. Make sure the print outs are clean and sharp. Take control of the printing process to avoid your book being pirated – only deal with the most reputable publishers. If you need to publish it online, you can start with Amazon Kindle. This will help you create an eBook. Start an account on KDP and upload your book using these simple steps:

•    Visit kdp.amazon.com to create your account

•    complete your tax information which is necessary

•    Click on finished to complete the process

•     Locate your bookshelf on the KDP main page

•    Click on Kindle eBook actions

•    Click on edit eBook content

•    Lastly, click on upload eBook manuscript and then upload your manuscript,

Select keywords that will help your book to be easily seen by your intended audiences. Also, select a category that will best fit your book. Wait for a confirmation message from Amazon, and then preview your manuscript once again to check for errors.

Click the Amazon author central account after uploading, press “save and publish” in your dashboard. Now you are ready to publish your book for public consumption. Click “save and publish” in the book editing screen, and everything is done.

9. Pricing Your Book

To start it is useful to keep the price low. It may be worth starting at a dollar to push readers to purchase. If it is a good book those first buyers will encourage others to buy, you can then increase gradually till it gets to the appropriate price for the book.

This is a marketing strategy that works most of the time. So, observe the sales graph and know when the margin needs an increase or a decrease in price.

10. Marketing Process

This is the last step of publishing your own book. Marketing is about creating awareness and how you can enjoy your labor. This is finding ways to get an audience for your newly published book. This could seem complicated but it is still doable.

Use the following steps to get a good head start:

•    Share the link to your published book online to all your social media accounts. You can also try creating a separate account on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, that are dedicated to your book.

•    Share the link on forums and blogs

•    File a review on Amazon and give a distinctive view about your book

•    Meet people with your book offline and be a little persuasive for them to buy

•    If you’re not on a budget, you can use any mass media for your promotion

•    Give out some copies to interested friends, they might refer others if they like it

You’re Ready to Publish a Book

You know all the steps, now you’re ready to get that book published! Being published may seem like an impossible feat but it’s not as daunting or complicated once you break it down.

Follow the steps, make sure everything is in order, and your book will be flying off the shelves in no time.

Josh Fechter
Josh is the founder and CEO of Squibler.