Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Five things I learned at the RNA Conference: self-publishing

Last weekend, along with 250 fellow writers, I attended the Romantic Novelists' Association's annual conference. It was a brilliant weekend held at Harper Adams University, near Telford. The food was plentiful and the drinks even more so, but believe it or not as well as all the partying and socialising I did actually learn something (no sniggering at the back).

Over the next few blog posts I'll be looking back at my sketchy notes and picking out some of the things I found particularly useful.

The first lecture I attended was by Talli Roland and Nick Spalding about their experiences with self-publishing.

Photo courtesy of Harper Adams University
  • Publish your novel first, THEN have your marketing push. Have your marketing plan in place but don't start promoting your book until readers can click on a link to buy it.
  • Make sure you have the license to your book's cover image and fonts.
  • I knew about the image, but had wrongly assumed it was okay to use free fonts. Check the license of each font you want to use.
  • Write an exciting blurb.
  • So many of the books I see on Amazon, both traditionally published and self-pubbed have no description. How can a reader make a decision to buy it if they don't know what it's about?
  • Design an eye-catching cover that works as a thumbnail and in black and white.
  • Get your book professionally edited!
Thank you Talli Roland and Nick Spalding for the talk on their reasons behind choosing independent publishing.

On Friday I'll be looking at what I learned from Ian Skillicorn's talk on marketing and self-publishing your ebook.


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