A Letter to a Friend Just Starting Out Indie Publishing

So, I have a friend who is a published author, but her publishing company recently shut their doors. It was probably for the best, and in the midst of it a gift actually came in the ability for this dear author friend to take her work to the next level.

It will be so much better than it was with that failed publishing house for a few reasons, but one that is foremost in my mind is that her artistic vision can be put into the hands of people who really care about seeing it thrive, to capture its beauty, and are passionate about making that creative presence shine in the modern publishing industry.

My friend has thus far been shy about drawing attention to herself, but I want to help her draw attention to what she is trying to share with the world, so as I help her take these first steps into indie publishing, I gave her some helpful advice and information for getting started.

I think this is good for any writer, aspiring indie author, and indie publisher to listen to, so I’m sharing the basics of the letter with you today. I hope you find something helpful here, and if you need more, make sure to check out my How Not to Get Overwhelmed series here on my blog.

A Letter to My Friend Just Starting Out in the World of Indie Publishing

[Dear Author Friend,
I’m so excited to see you entering the Indie Publishing world with your inspired writing!]
[Now on to the advice]
You really should have a blog for people to visit in case they’re interested in finding out more about your books, etc. It can be super basic, and if you want I can [help you] start one . . . at WordPress. Or you can start one yourself. It’s free and there are lots of free themes to choose from.
You want a blog or website link inside each book (especially the ebooks) for people so that it makes life easier for them if they want more of you or your writing, or even to contact you.
I’m including a whole list of links for you to use to get started on self-publishing. Most of this you need to get done before you are ready to publish, but places for people to locate you and your book info are super important. It’s about helping your readers, and it’s too hard to find you right now, so that will turn a lot of people off from even trying.
A blog really only needs to have a basic bio, a place for people to contact you (a form can be made on WordPress so you don’t even have to share your email address right away), info about your books and where (if any) to find them. From there you can personalize it more, share about your inspirations and blurbs of your books, pictures of your covers, etc.
[If you want to find/attract readers, you will want to offer them whatever you have in you that will make it easy to connect with you on a more personal level. Such is the way of our world filled with social media. πŸ™‚ ]
Beyond that (most of this is completely free!):
  • Make a Smashwords account: http://www.smashwords.com where you will be able to upload your ebooks for sale at places like Apple & Barnes & Noble, etc. w/o having to do it separately.
  • Ingramspark is where you can also make hardbound books.
  • I think other companies to check out for that are Blurb and Lulu.
  • Lulu is the only free sign-up service of these three Print on Demand (POD)
Okay! Now that I’ve overwhelmed you with stuff, let me know how I can help!


That was the gist of the letter. I hope you found something helpful here and are encouraged to start on the journey of self publishing with class and confidence!

And don’t forget, I have a whole series on helping you indie publish, one piece at a time:

How Not to Get Overwhelmed with Indie Publishing

How Not To

29 responses to “A Letter to a Friend Just Starting Out Indie Publishing”

  1. Wow! This looks very informative! Thank you. I’m a week into my indie publishing and I’m lost!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Megan! I hope you find lots of helpful articles on my blog and if you ever have a question, please just ask! All the best on your indie publishing journey.

      Like

  2. I didn’t know about the free Kindle previewing software. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s super helpful and important for checking your mobi and ebook files before publishing. πŸ™‚ I’m glad I had something useful for you here, E. ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You always deliver helpful tips in all of your posts. ❀

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Reblogged this on Allison the Writer and commented:
    This is a wonderful letter written by an awesome writing friend, which ought to be shared with all writing friends who are new to the self-publishing world! And even if you’re not a newbie, it’s an excellent refresher / guide for what to do next time. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. πŸ™‚ Thanks so much, Allison! πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  4. So awesome! Bookmarking. πŸ˜€

    Like

  5. Reblogged this on Wind Eggs and commented:
    It’s easy to feel lost in the detritus when you’re launching your indie publishing career. Rachel Ritchley shares a few tips that might help you find your way through the details.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, Phillip! I hope I am able to be of help to your readers and friends. ❀

      Like

  6. You’re so kind, Rachael. Giving someone a place to start is a great help. Great advice! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Cathleen. I love to help wherever I can with whatever is useful. πŸ™‚ You are also a great help!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Thanks, Rachael for this helpful advice. πŸ™‚ — Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So welcome, Suzanne! πŸ™‚ It’s always a pleasure to help.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Reblogged this on Lonely Power Poles and commented:
    I’m not planning on Self-publishing anytime soon, but this is great stuff to keep somewhere to look up when needed

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the very kind reblog, sir! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  9. This is great – keeping as a reference

    Like

  10. I’m bookmarking this, Rachael. It’s excellent advice for anyone new to indie publishing πŸ™‚

    Like

  11. Some great tips, Rachael! I’ll be doing these things for my father, now that he’s embarked on an indie author career!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s so exciting! I’m glad I could share some helpful info to get you started!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Great Post Rachael, friendly informative and thorough. Your friend is lucky to have you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Paul. Sometimes I’m a little to free with the “suggestions” lol. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Never!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. OH! You’re awesome, Chris. πŸ™‚ Thanks for sharing! How you are btw? I’ve been so busy outside the blogosphere that I’ve spent little time interacting and keeping up with my friends here. ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My pleasure Rachael, it’s a great post πŸ‘πŸ˜ƒ
        I’m fine thanks – been busier than a squirrel in a nut processing factory with blog stuff, plus, exploring this new area of U.K. we moved to (last October) πŸ˜„

        Liked by 1 person

        1. OH! Wow. I feel like I missed way too much in the last six months! Congrats on the move and new place to explore. Very cool. πŸ™‚

          Liked by 1 person

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