Accidental Publisher

Life Takes Us This Way And That Way.

But Sometimes It Just Trips Us Up!

By Brad Wiebe

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Writing a novel is an enormous task.  It’s not something any wannabe writer, like me, should take lightly.  Testament, my debut novel, was almost two-years of work to complete.  Turns out, that may have been the easy part.  The magic that is Publishing hides behind a number of big, heavy, by-invitation-only doors, traditionally known as the Big Five – the largest publishers in the world.

So I read a bunch of books to learn how to get behind these doors.  It takes a lot.  A traditional author needs an agent to start.  The agent knows some of the spells required to get you past the first of those Big Doors, but s/he needs to be conjured up too, first.  To do so, there is an elaborate process that must be perfected before you’re rejected.

Yeah, that’s right.  You will be rejected.  Go ask J.K. Rowling all about it.  Yeah, bloody J.K. Rowling!

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Yeah, that’s right.  You will be rejected.  Go ask J.K. Rowling all about it.  Yeah, bloody J.K. Rowling!

Every single one of those publishing books I read, often written by literary agents, wished me luck, and told me to brace for bad news.  “But keep trying,” they would extoll, “there’s nothing like being traditionally published.”  It may be true.

However, I chose what I thought was the path less taken, a favorite route for me.  Sometimes.  Anyway, I found the labyrinth of self-publishing.  The Big Five are obscured within the mere shadow of it.  True.  Of course the Big Five still has the magic.  Nevertheless, overnight – okay, over many many months, I’ve learned some of the intricacies of Self-Publishing.

One of the remarkable things I’ve come to know is that by far most books are self-published or published by quite small traditional-style publishers.  It’s debatable as to whether or not these small publishers provide any opportunities that the self-publisher cannot acquire themselves.  I can say this equivocally because of the resources I’ve been able to acquire myself for Testament.

For example, the Alliance of Independent Authors website offers insights, tools, legal council, courses and a treasure trove of other valuable writing and publishing information to its members.  Much of it for free – post a reasonable membership fee.

Reedsy, similarly, is home to almost every facet of novel creation.  They teach courses on writing, publishing, marketing and much more.  They provide opinion pieces, case studies, and best of all – talent.  I hired both my editor and graphic artist/type-setter from Reedsy.  All at reasonable industry rates.  Much of the talent awaiting an author at Reedsy have Big Five credentials.  Both of my team-mates did.  Thanks guys!

Lastly, at least until I dig deeper into the labyrinth, I must introduce Dave at Kindlepreneur.  He and his crew are all about Best Marketing Practices for Kindle and eReaders – ALL for FREE!  Its been worth every bit of my considerable time on Dave’s site.  The link above gets you to his Book Marketing 101 page.

I thought a lot about putting marketing information into this post.  This blog will be about books – mine, and hopefully in the future pieces by other self-published authors.  So why do it?  Well, ALL good books are marketed.  That’s how You learn about them.  Otherwise, perhaps like Testament, they would instantly fade into the ether of most books.

Remember I told you that most books are independently published?  Well, via the opportunities to learn from the services mentioned above, is how I, we, the majority of writers on the planet, get our books to You.   It’s as simple as that.

 

Above, that’s what the three of us created.  A professionally edited and designed book (paperback & eCopy) that is as respectable as any Big Five novel out there.  I could not have gotten to this point without ALLi & Reedsy, Kindlepreneur, and my newly formed team.  How can anyone go wrong?  Right?

The labyrinth is, as a New York friend of mine from a life-time ago used to say, “Yuuuge!”  Uh, that’s huge for my Canadian and UK counterparts.  It’s certainly big enough to get lost in and never be heard from again.  Another reason to take the hands of Reedsy & ALLi who can help guide the way.

But that does not mean you won’t fall down.  Kind of.  Like I did the other day on my way to self-publishing.  I read all about it, as I do.  Made a plan, as one should, and pressed the wrong button, which I shouldn’t have.  Voila!  I am published. 

Currently, you’ll find Testament in paperback on Amazon world-wide.  Yeah, it wasn’t supposed to happen until January 2020 for personal marketing reasons.  But it did.  I tripped-up and am an accidental publisher as a result.  I realize that I could undue my mistake, but I saw it there… published.  I think it was meant to be, so I’m leaving it there for you world.  To discover. 

Of course Reedsy & ALLi can help one get discovered too.  Right now, I fear, my little introduction into the published world is invisible.  I’ll be exploring and learning the ways in which I can put it in front of potential readers – world wide. 

Hmmm… could sure use some of that Big Five magic right now!

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