Indie Publishing Success - Make a Good Living Self-publishing your Books

Indie Publishing Intro

I want to introduce you to the secret that every successful indie author knows—if you want to make a career out of your writing, you must self-publish.

Writers are often held back from self-publishing success by limiting beliefs. Not about their writing ability, but limiting beliefs about running a publishing business, marketing, and how to make a living as a writer.

For example, many authors think that you are not a “real” author unless you are traditionally published.

Many over-estimate the difficulty of indie publishing and have avoided self-publishing their books, or have published a book or books and sold nothing; despite marketing themselves into exhaustion.

You may even hold some of these limiting beliefs yourself.

I will let you in on a secret: indie publishing is not hard. What’s hard is sorting through all the rubbish advice online and extracting what works for writers.

The next few pages will help you overcome any limiting beliefs you have about self-publishing and put you on the right path to becoming a successful author.

Let’s start with the most important question:

What is Indie Publishing?

At the highest level, indie publishing and self-publishing are the same. However, I want you to differentiate in your mind between indie publishing and self-publishing:

  1. Indies are Professional Self-publishers
  2. There is no “Self” in Indie Publishing
  3. It’s an Online Business
  4. It’s Bigger Than Traditional Publishing
  5. You Control Your Career

Indies are Professional Self-publishers

Let’s face it; self-publishing still gets a fair bit of bad press.

While it is true there is nothing to stop Uncle Mike from self-publishing his 600-page memoir about watching paint dry, Uncle Mike is not a professional, and his memoir will disappear along with all the other dross.

Indies are professionals—they make sure the quality of their books is top-notch, they work on their business skills as hard as they work on their craft skills and they treat their writing career as a business.

There is no “Self” in Indie Publishing

There is no “self” in indie publishing. To be successful in your indie publishing business, you will, at some stage, need to hire:

  • Editors
  • Cover Designers
  • Typesetter/eBook designers
  • Web Designers
  • Marketing Consultants
  • An accountant and maybe a lawyer

When you first start, you are likely to do many of these things yourself. As your business grows, however, it’s better to outsource these tasks so you can concentrate on your core business, i.e., writing more books. Outsourcing is how small business owners in every industry build their business and is normal.

Indie Publishing is an Online Business

Indie publishing is an online business. While this might seem obvious when you see the high number of eBooks sold each year, most print book sales are also online. In 2017, Amazon alone sold more than half of all print books sold that year.

Indie Publishing is Bigger Than Traditional Publishing

Indie publishing is the biggest game in town in terms of units sold. Indies sold 43% of all books sold online in 2017. The so-called Big 5 publishers came in a very distant second with 26% of total unit sales.

Indie publishers also earn more overall than their traditionally published cousins because of far higher royalties.

You Control Your Career

The critical characteristic of indie publishing is that you are in control:

  • You choose what type of career you want, what sort of money you want, and how much or how little you promote your work.
  • You can write a lot, or you can write a little.
  • You choose who gets to see your work and in what format.
  • You decide what you’re willing to give up and what you expect in return.
  • You choose if you want to use a traditional publisher and on what terms.

Up Next…

Are you being held back by self-publishing myths? Click Next to learn about the four self-publishing myths that will kill your writing career.