How to Self Publish Your Book: From Idea to Bookstore (And All the Steps In-Between)
Empowering a child’s imagination through reading is one of life’s greatest gifts. As colorful illustrations leap off each page, a bedtime story can send kids to far-off destinations, on wondrous adventures, and through magical journeys.
If you’ve ever dreamed of becoming part of the magic and writing a children’s book, the process may seem complicated and confusing. Is it better to self publish or to find a publisher? How much will it cost? Do I need a distributor? How on earth do I get my story out of my head, onto paper, and into bookstores???
Meet Megan Meyer, a first-time children’s author I interviewed about writing, illustrating, and self-publishing her new book, Larriot the Liger. A story 5 years in the making, Megan discusses the challenges, setbacks, and triumphs she faced while creating Larriot. Megan explains how she went from having zero experience in professional writing to becoming a successful, first-time author and self publisher. She also explains the definition of a liger—yes, it’s a real animal!
Do you have an idea you’ve been dreaming of turning into a book but don’t know where to get started? Are you ready to become a published author? Read an excerpt from our interview below, then listen to the full Megan Meyer Interview and be inspired to bring your story to life!
Robert: How did you go about finding someone to print your book?
Megan: Well, it was really important to us that we found a printer who would be able to deliver a professional product in the end. We didn’t want to look like this was our first go at writing or publishing a children’s book. We wanted to blend in with all the major publishers, if it eventually got into a major store like Barnes and Noble or Borders. So, the first step was internet searching for a printer that specializes in children’s books. It didn’t turn up that many options, but there was about six or seven different printers that we had send us samples in the mail so we could sort of feel the quality and look at the pictures and see if there was something with bright colors that we could picture the quality that our book would come out like. And there was a lot of unprofessional, poorly bound books that we weren’t that happy with from a lot of printers. Actually, I would say one of the most frustrating processes of creating this book was just finding a printer that we were happy with.
Robert: So, that was a problem then. I mean, you would think that there would be so many printers out there that would jump at this and have the resources to do it, but you’re saying it was actually very difficult.
Megan: Yeah. And one of the problems was that we were looking to find and work with the actual printer. There’s a lot of middlemen on the internet that target people who are self-publishing. They go between you and the printer in actually getting your book printed and they take a cut. It was hard to actually find the printer themselves and work directly with them, because we wanted to cut out extra people taking a cut of our profits.
Robert: So what do these middlemen do? Do they make life a little bit easier or do they simply just connect you to the printer?
Megan: Well, they can make life a little bit easier. They’re companies that provide printing services, and they will help you layout your book, and if you need it they will register the ISBN number for you, but those are all things you can do by yourself. If you don’t have any experience in layout or don’t know how to do that than it might be very helpful for you to use one of them.
Learn how you can self publish your book! Download “How to Self Publish” Interview Now!