Two and a half years ago I wrote a book on menopause, and spent a lot of time looking for a way to publish it without breaking my budget. I looked at publishers, agents, marketing campaigns, and self publishing packages from printers. I read books on how to write letters to everyone in the publishing industry, I got lists of agents and what they handled, and lists of publishers and what they publish. I researched my market online, I went to Powell's and skimmed through every book they had on menopause, and still thought mine had possibilities. I got it copyrighted, wrote my first query letter to an agent, and sent it off into oblivion. I decided I would much rather publish it myself than spend an unknown number of years writing query letters. But self publishing, besides having the potential to be the fast track to nowhere, was still not free. Even if I did all the work myself that I could, it was looking like $200 to $2000, just to get into print. But then there was the Kindle.
Last year, I started studying up on how to publish on Kindle. Amazon had been adding more and more support for authors, and I found everything I needed to know—although some of it was a bit confusing and took a while to sink in—on their forum. So bit by bit, month by month, I converted it to Kindle format, tweaked and polished and read and re-read it, again and again, and thought about all the fun and the scary things that could happen if I actually got it done.
One thing a bit different about doing a book—I couldn't have done it without lots of help from friends and family. Not like a painting!
And last Friday, on the first day of the Year Of The Rabbit, I finally got it up there on Amazon, and it's live! And except for the copyright fee, it cost me exactly nothing. I guess the age of individual self-expression has really arrived.
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