Self-Publishing – 12 Useful Ideas from Guy Kawasaki

APE by Guy KawasakiReading Guy Kawasaki’s APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur is proving to be straightforward and insightful, just as Joel Friedlander¬†of The Book Designer promised. As an inveterate note taker, I’ve already filled seven hand-written pages and thought some of them might be useful to others.

  • When Kawasaki published his first book, he gave away 20,000 copies and sold 15,000. Who would have ever imagined a ratio like that?
  • He uses crowd sourcing to solicit feedback on his manuscripts.
  • When you publish an ebook, don’t use Times New Roman, Arial or Helvetica. These mark you as an amateur.
  • On Book Cover Archive are more than 1200 examples of book covers. When you create yours, choose a cover design for the ebook version that’s easy to read even in the postage stamp size you see on Amazon or other ebook resellers.
  • Don’t obsess about choosing your distribution channels, you can easily change them.
  • Make sure you test your ebooks on different devices before you launch.
  • Don’t use an author services company to acquire an ISBN. If you do, they and not you become the publisher of record.
  • Kawasaki does not worry about DRM (digital rights management). Nor does he register a copyright for his materials.
  • Offer your book in pdf format to anyone who promises a review.
  • Make it easy for someone to do a review by placing all bio, book blurb, photos and other info in one consolidated spot on your website or blog. This is what Kawasaki’s looks like for his book, Enchantment.
  • Platforms are built on trust, likaability and competence.
  • Repeat your tweets. Kawasaki repeats his four times.

Practical ideas and lots of them. I’ll be back with another set when I’ve finished reading.

A Marketing We Go

I feel like Dr Jekyll and Mrs Hyde.

For months I’ve read nothing but historical fiction. Indeed, some time ago, I decided to read at least one book by the top historical fiction authors and so I created a list. Let’s call that TBR pile #1. Then, I offered to help with the Historical Novels Review, which is published by the Historical Novel Society. Pile #2. And since each of these has a deadline, they take precedence over #1.

And now there’s TBR pile #3, consisting of books on marketing and self-publishing. One of these is APE by Guy Kawasaki, a well organized look at three dimensions of successful self-publishing: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur. If you’ve ever looked at my previous blog, One Writer’s Voice, you will see lots of posts on being an author entrepreneur, hence you can imagine that Kawasaki’s book had immediate appeal.

Three others arrived in the post yesterday, a birthday gift from my son.

  • Digital Publishing Profits by Quinn Barrett promises 10 strategies to positively impact your bottom line marketing and selling e-books.
  • Velocity by Ajaz Ahmed and Stefan Olander is subtitled The Seven New Laws for a World Gone Digital. According to Ahmed and Olander the abilities one has to master in today’s world are: speed, direction, acceleration and discipline.
  • Data Insights by Hunter Whitney, a book that helps readers see data in a new light so that it is more accessible, useful, and meaningful. This book should help me understand how to make sense of whatever data I collect through my own marketing efforts.

The juxtaposition of piles #1 and #2 against pile #3 could not be greater. The world of the past – the world of the future. My brain is spinning already.

A marketing I go. A marketing I go. Heigh-ho the derry-o. A marketing I go.