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WritersLife Wednesday – Things to do Before you Publish


There’s a lot of things you know have to be done before a story or novel can be put out there.  Obviously it has to be written, edited, beta read, and rewritten.  It needs a cover, spine and back cover.  These are obvious because we see them when we read.  Can’t read something if it hasn’t been written, don’t want to if it hasn’t been edited, and never notice it if it doesn’t have a cover or has a bad one.

But what about the other things.  The things not so obvious to the budding author?  That’s what this post is about.

  1. Mailing List – Nope, not when you’re about to publish, now.  Right now.  I’m doing mine tonight and am about a year behind.  I should’ve had it up the day I started my blog.

  2. A Website.  It can be something free on WordPress or another platform, just something to help people find you.  A shop front if you will.  Don’t have one?  Make one.  Yep, again, do it right now.

  3. Template for announcing new publications through your mailing list and on your blog.  Do it before you publish and you can just plug stuff in and send it out without a ton of time crafting a new email and blog post.

  4. Make an Amazon Associates account linked to your website.  Again, do it now.  I’m doing this tonight too.

  5. Format your stories.  This one is just Indie Authors because if you have a publisher, they do this for you.  If it’s a short, probably not going to be printed, so just worry about formatting it for e-books.  If it is in print, that’s a whole ‘nuther animal and takes a lot more time.  Get it ready to go long before your planned release date.

  6. Make a marketing plan.  What will you release when?  When will you do promotions?  Will you do KDP Select or go wide?  How will you let people who care know when you have something new out?  Where will your advertisement budget go?  What advertisement channels can you use without breaking the bank?  Never underestimate the word of mouth.  Your friends and family and writing groups love you and want to help.  Let them.  Give them a premade flyer to put on social media and to use to tell their friends over email.

  7. Set up a separate account for your author earnings and expenses.  This makes taxes a lot easier since stuff is already separated out and separately tracked.

  8. Indies only – Make your covers!  Get the storyboards to the artist or do them yourself, but get the first few ready to go so you have time to make changes if needed.

Once you have published, set up your Amazon Author page.  You can’t do it before you have a book or story up because it uses the book to set you up, but be ready to make it.  Have your author bio written and get a professional picture.  (Note, I said professional.  No, your cat is not it 🙂

Alright, there’s my list.  Now I just have to do it!

Happy writing 🙂

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