The Mystical Wood Is Ready
I received my second proof of ‘The Mystical Wood’ back from CreateSpace yesterday.
For those of you who don’t know, CreateSpace is the self publishing arm of Amazon.com. All you need to do is send them the files for the interior and cover via the internet and they send you a proof for review. They are a print-on-demand (POD) publisher and therefore you only pay for the cost of the books you sell.
There are other such providers available but so far I have yet to find one with such a reasonable printing price which means the author gets to keep more of the sales price. There are other areas that you need to be careful of, especially if you are like me and live outside of the USA, the main one being that they withhold 30% of your sales revenue as a tax deduction. There are ways around this so don’t panic. I will go into the details of the issues you should be aware of in later posts.
The first proof had a couple of typos – how did I miss those? And the back cover wasn’t quite central. Unfortunately, the system for viewing the cover online prior to ordering a proof doesn’t allow an accurate enough representation online and so it can be a bit hit and miss.
I need to research how others have fared with this system. If anyone has had a similar experience or knows of any neat tricks to ensure that the cover positioning is perfect before ordering a proof, please let me know.
Anyway the cost of two proofs was about $60, $52 ($26 x2) of that being postage – see what I mean about being outside the USA! You can opt for two cheaper postage methods but then you’ll be at least two weeks waiting for the proof to arrive.
My costs to date have been: $39 for the CreateSpace pro plan – which gives you far cheaper print costs and other benefits and $250 for illustrations by Pierre Fihue – a great artist that I located on Elance. So to become a published author it has cost me, in total $349 (£221).
If I sell the book at $9.99 and sell from my own website then I get to keep $4.34. Sales via Amazon.com allow me to keep $2.34 and all other sales channels via CreateSpace only net me $0.34 per sale. Obviously I will try to sell mainly through my own site and therefore need to sell 81 books to break even. To feed the family will need quite a few more!
I hope that this has given you an insight into self publishing and how it is possible to get into print without being at the mercy of agents and publishers. If anyone has any experiences of self publishing that they would like to share please let me know. Now back to marketing ‘The Mystical Wood’.
Photo credit: nlmAdestiny.