There was a time, not too long ago, when the literati viewed a self-published author with a low brow (pun intended) and a smirk. A book was considered worthy of mention only if it had been through the grind of publishing: One rejection after another. Times have changed and tables have, more or less, turned. James Joyce had to wait almost a decade and face multiple rejections before Dubliner was published. Today, authors can get their book on stands, in the hands of their readers, within a few months by self-publishing it.
The stigma (mostly imagined), that was attached to publishing your book by paying a sum for it, has gradually been erased from popular sentiment. A perfect case of this is the inspiring success story of Amish Tripathi, author of the Shiva trilogy and Immortals of Meluha fame.
Faced with an increasing pile of rejection slips from publisher after publisher, Tripathi (who was a banker by profession) went with his gut instinct and self-published his story. Word of mouth spread and the book sold 40,000 copies catching the attention of Westland Press in the process. As we all know, the author has bagged a $1 million deal for his next book.
What makes a successful self-published author? What are they doing that make the big boys of publishing look up and take notice? We have tried to analyze self-published authors and managed to spot three characteristics that make them stand apart:
It may be a small, simple word but it has huge ramifications. Saying “i believe in my story” is one thing; pursuing it to the very end is a different tale altogether. James Redfield sold copies of The Celestine Prophecy one book at a time from the backseat of his car. Warner Books acquired the rights to the book which went on to become a #1 bestseller. Not only do these writers believe in what they wrote they also stick by it until the book achieves the success it deserves.
2. Be Flexible yet Firm
As a writer trying to get published, there are things that you may have to be flexible about and things that you should be firm on. Self-published authors who have tasted success did so because they were flexible with their expectations. If Amish Triapthi had waited for a publisher to come by knocking on his door to publish his book, the Shiva trilogy may have never seen the light of day. He decided to temper his expectations and get his book out. His flexibility, on this occasion, paid rich dividends in the end. Though Tripathi was flexible with his expectations, he was firm in his will to see his story reach the reader.
3. Ride the Trend
Self-published authors often follow trends and ride them to ensure their books are successful. Amanda Hocking published 17 eBooks which sold millions of copies. St. Martin’s Press brought the rights to her first three books in 2011. eBooks are all the rage now and you see many a rising star publishing their books in the digital format.
Self-publishing is no longer the poorer cousin of the publishing industry. Authors who self-publish their books are bringing in the readership, if not more, than published authors are.
[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]https://writingtipsoasis.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/img-109061105-0001.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Anand Changali is a compulsive writer whose first love is cinema. He has written scripts for animation shows, and animation films, in addition to blogs and articles for the digital domain. His book, The Princess in Black – An Unheard Story of the Mughals, has been picked up by Srishti Publishers. [/author_info] [/author]