How I Overcame the Fear of Self-Publishing Books (Part 2)

5 Strategies to Help You Take Action

 

To some of you this plan may seem too simple, may even be irrelevant. It might even be missing some hard and fast components.

For me I have to discipline myself and work to a daily plan.

 

By Mia Harper
(Revised Blog from Bright Bold Publishing website)

1. GOAL SETTING WITH A TIMETABLE

This is a must, a way of being accountable for everything you do.

 

When I first started creating a timetable I didn’t allow for circumstances that could upset the whole plan. I plotted every conceivable hour without any thought for emergencies or proper breaks. The cramming in of so much was fine for a robot but not a human being.

 

It took me some months before I realised that I was stretching myself to impossible limits. I was unable to maintain my workload per day. I demanded too much from myself and ended up being unhappy with the lack of results.

 

I had to sit down and rehash the whole timetable. I added short achievable goals and long-term moveable goals. I built a plan that was flexible and adaptable one that contained the bigger picture of my goals. So far it appears to be working.

2. CREATING A TO DO LIST

illustration of a to do list

Every night I prepared a ‘to do list’ or reminder for the following day. This supplemented my timetable. I had to be careful that the list was feasible. I’d concentrate on the most pressing items that needed to be executed for that day. If I had to learn new skills I set aside an hour or two.

3. LEARNING FROM THE EXPERTS

illustration showing group of experts

It goes without saying that technology and the whole industry of marketing is changing exponentially.

 

As a novice in self-publishing it took me over two years to go through the swathes of people who referred to themselves as experts or an authority in marketing. I made a lot of mistakes on the way. I listened to a lot of people spouting useless information.

 

Most people like me were reaching fever pitch to make a living online. Notice how I avoid using the title ‘making money online’. This very idea has been the downfall of hard-working, entrepreneurs.

 

It’s been a difficult journey and I’ve learned lessons the hard way. I was easily distracted for all the wrong reasons. When you are in complete overwhelm and a novice your sense of judgement goes through the window. I was gullible and didn’t know any better. In my situation I bought everything because I thought I might be missing out.

 

If I’d only known what I know now I could have avoided the unnecessary pitfalls. So many others I know who are beginning their journey into self-publishing and marketing are saying the same thing. It is like some infectious disease.

 

So to avoid some of this hysteria I’ve got a very short list of marketers I will only listen to and buy from. These marketers display integrity in a market place full of charlatans.

 

N.B. I’m not an affiliate for any of the following people though I may become one in the future.

 

Richard Bullivant is really the person I have to thank for my self-publishing Eureka moments. He started me on the path to self-publishing. He implemented outsourcing in his own work over five years ago. I was sceptical of utilising this method but a few years later I backtracked realising it had potential.

 

I took a further course of his ‘How to self-publish children’s books on Kindle.’ You'll find this course on Udemy.com, He demonstrates inspiring techniques for a variety of books.

 

Amy Harrop has a natural ability to teach others with simplicity that defies complexity. I’ve always liked her style. I’ve purchased her self-publishing products of which there are too many to mention here. Check out her link:

 

She’s always helpful and approachable. As a publisher she’s focussed on the products which help her in her own business. As a self-publisher you’ll find lots of great tools to assist you in your book production.

 

David Lee Martin is an excellent trainer in Scrivener. I learnt so much from him. His pace and pitch is right for just about anyone wanting to learn how to use the software effectively. He shows you how to organise your entire book with amazing ease.

 

He released his ‘In the Trenches’ some time ago and it has become an invaluable volume. He informs you of his experiences in self-publishing as well as the advantages of writing in sub genres. There’s a lot of great honest insight here on how to run a successful publishing business.

 

Paul Coleman a self-publishing innovator. When I first came across him I was both amused and taken by his sense of originality. There was the element of the experimental and thinking outside the box. He pulls no punches and only recommends those he feels are worthy of a mention.

 

Want to produce a bestseller book and find the right genre? Use Yasiv.com to assist you. It’s certainly a different approach; one worth considering.

 

Derek Doepker has self-publishing down to a fine art. I’ve read his ‘Hooks for Books’ a great eye opener when it comes to finding that ‘compelling’ title. He has self-publishing training courses and in his own words ‘loves sharing his experience to help other aspiring authors get their message into the world.’

4. OUTSOURCING WORK

illustration of group of people with different freelance skills

The very thought of employing others to do my work through ‘outsourcing’ went against my principles. Of course that’s a perfectionist talking; thinking I could do everything myself.

 

When I heard and saw what results others were achieving over a shorter period of time I realised I needed a rethink.

 

Changing my ‘mindset’ was hard. There were all sorts of factors that came into play. The major one was lack of funds to implement outsourcing.

 

I reminded myself that I was running a business which requires a budget. While creating a book is free all the other bits need some cash.

 

I’ll be truthful it took some time before I began to see the wisdom of outsourcing. Most, including myself, expect it to be freebies all the way!

 

Going into self-publishing with blinkers on is a sure fire way of failing. In theory I knew it was true in practice I held onto my skewed ideals.

 

Doing everything alone wasn’t going to cut it anymore.

 

Not outsourcing holds you back and I was wasting so much time!

 

Then I juggled with the concept of what kind of outsourcing I required and affordability.

 

I’m still on a learning curve with that one!

 

However, what little outsourcing I do execute has helped towards speeding up my production.

 

Some of the following outsourcing companies are worth looking at:

 

Upwork.com (creatives, writers, web/mobile developers, virtual assistants, etc)

 

Fiverr.com It used to be $5 to use this site but those days have long gone. Still you can get all your work done quite cheaply here. You do need to check out the reviews and quality of the work though. (illustrators, graphic design, translators, video animation, audio, etc)

 

iWriter.com (custom content for blogs, press releases, articles, ebooks, etc)

 

99Designs.co.uk (logos, branding, biz cards, packaging, t-shirts, etc)

5. PRACTICING MINDFULNESS

illustration of my mantra: Only commit to what is possible in a day

Finally, this is the last strategy which has brought me some peace in a noisy world of self-publishing.

 

I’m an advocate of living in the ‘NOW’. In essence I’m not going to beat myself up over finishing something off by the end of the day if it’s unrealistic to do so. This discipline surprisingly keeps me focussed and attentive to the task in hand. There’s no time to dwell on past failures. There’s no time to waste on future hypothetical scenarios that may never happen.

 

This form of therapy has brought tremendous peace and calm in what otherwise would have been a tortuous path of self-publishing. Once I realised the sense of committing only to what was possible in a single day then things began to become easier. I won’t say that I never ever stumble but I always manage to pull myself back to the present which helps deflect the negatives.

 

Being and performing in the present moment is the only real action. It's helped me face the fear of self-publishing.

 

If you haven't read Part 1 of this blog here's the link

 

What has Helped You to Take Action in Your Self-Publishing Business?

I’d love to hear what struggles you’ve had self-publishing.

How have you managed to overcome your fear of self-publishing?

Do you have a daily plan that works for you?

Please leave a comment below that you think will help other self-publishers.

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