Post 8 of 26 of The Self-Publishing Series
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Great quests have obstacles. Self-publishing is one such quest. There are physical obstacles; writing and organizing your text, creating cover art and uploading your book to a publishing service. More difficult though are the internal obstacles. They are more powerful and will keep you from finishing.
Internal beliefs birth our actions
Most of the world used think the Earth was flat. If they went too far they thought they’d fall off the edge. If you look to the horizon right now you see an edge. What they saw and what they believed matched. Their ignorance created their obstacles. Your ignorance is creating obstacles. I’m not trying to be a jerk but I am trying to be brutally honest. You don’t know the answers to your most difficult questions because you haven’t been to the answer yet. Once you’ve been around the world you know it’s round. Once you’ve published your book you won’t be ignorant of the questions you’re asking right now. Those questions are keeping you from publishing. Let’s deal with those questions head on.
These questions are only answered through experience.
You haven’t published your book because you are waiting for answers to internal questions. You ask the questions in your mind and then you use the lack of answers as your excuse for not publishing. Your world is still flat because you haven’t explored past the edges of what you can see. You need to experience publishing your own book.
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Answers to the most common self-publishing questions:
How many copies will I sell?
Zero. So far you’re going to sell zero copies because you haven’t published your work. You’re afraid and you’re stuck because you need the courage or the tools. I hope you’re getting more courage by learning about my story of self-publishing my first book and I’m finalizing my site http://www.TheSelfPublishingSystem.com that will teach you the tools and tactics I used to build my book.
How long will it take to finish my project?
So far your project has no end. You won’t know how long it takes until it’s over. You can guess how long it will take to reach the end but you don’t know until you get there. Until you’re done with your journey you’re guessing, just like the people who thought the world was flat.
What will people think of my work?
No one cares about your work because you haven’t shared it with anyone yet. It’s on your hard drive. It’s in your journal. It’s in your head. No one cares about your work yet because you haven’t done the scariest part of the process, hitting the publish/upload/submit button. You have to go first and then they’ll care. People respect vulnerability and have patience for an unfinished product. Share the development of your project with others. They’ll appreciate the inside view of the process and growth of your ideas.
What if I don’t have anything else to write about after I publish my work?
Worrying about your second book before your first is published is like worrying about your retirement plan before you have a job. Your first book is like a cork. Get it out of the way and other words will flow. You’ll get better too. Chris Guillebeau wrote a wonderful post about never saving your best for later. Write. Publish. Write more. There’s more to be discovered inside you. Your ideas will keep going if you do.
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