The Nittany Valley Writers Network discussion on self-publishing at Schlow Library this past Tuesday went very well. We had a crowd of over twenty come out to hear Michelle Weisen, Cindy Keith, John Swisher and me share our experiences in the brave new world of self-publishing.
The meeting including a demo of how to format and upload a book to a self-publishing service. There were a lot of questions during and after the discussion. It became quite heated at the end with members of the audience disagreeing with each other over self-publishing in the world of academia. Some thought it was a career killer. One said that at her age, she couldn’t wait around for a publishing company and decided self-publishing might be the way to go.
Here are some useful links for those interested in self-publishing:
- Joe Konrath’s Newbie’s Guide to Publishing has everything you need to know from writing to pricing and tips on a good cover: http://jakonrath.blogspot.com/
- CreateSpace.com has the best royalties for self-publishers that I could find.
- Amazon’s Kindle self-publishing site: http://kdp.amazon.com If you want to sell ebooks, you want to sell to Kindle readers.
- Lulu.com is an ideal site for the less tech savvy or for those who may only want to print a few copies of their work for friends and family.
- Barnes and Noble’s Pubit site: http://pubit.barnesandnoble.com
Below is some information about our panel.
Michelle Weisen, is English professor-turned-author. Lavinia’s Window is
her first novel and third children’s book. She self-published it in 2008. Michelle has since formed her own publishing company called Words of Mercy. A portion of the proceeds from sales of her books support
Cindy Keith is the owner of M.I.N.D. in Memory Care. She consults with families nationwide who struggle to care for a loved one with dementia. She is the author of “Love, Laughter, & Mayhem – Caregiver Survival Manual For Living With A Person With Dementia,” as well as “Love, Laughter, & Mayhem In Eldercare Facilities: The Master Key For Dementia Training.”
John Swisher, a professor emeritus of Counselor Education at Penn State, is the author of Two Paths Crossing: Then and Now. The novel was stimulated during a tour of Greece that focused on ancient sites including Delphi. He wondered what happened to real treasures given to the Oracles.
Welcome to Scranton is back as a Kindle Best Seller…in a very narrow category.
It was right behind Ann Patchett’s Truth and Beauty and ahead of Thicker Than Blood:Friendships of Womyn by Maureen Jones-Ryan.
It reached #22 in the following category:
- #22 in Kindle Store > Books > Nonfiction > Advice & How-to > Health, Mind & Body > Relationships > General
Again, I’m amused as the novella is fiction. It’s definitely not a How-to book on anything except perhaps how not to have a relationship. But I’ll take what I can get.
After lowering the ebook price of Welcome to Scranton to 99 cents, sales have jumped. It is #77 on the Kindle Best seller list for Advice & How-to> Health, Mind & Body > Relationships right behind Dr. Laura’s book The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands.
That is quite amusing as Welcome to Scranton is fiction. While the story is about people with dysfunctional relationships, it’s more of a How Not-to book on Relationships. Very funny indeed.
Boy, if I could only outsell Dr. Laura, even if it’s just for a day. That would be something.