Five important questions to ask yourself before you self-publish

In 2012, I independently published my novel Hell's Game through Createspace; and it became an Amazon bestseller. I credit various factors in my success, and one thing I tell other writers who think about self-publishing is to think about whether or not it is really the best option for them. I created this list of questions I asked myself before I proceeded with Hell's Game and my subsequent books: The Red Lantern Scandals, Exercise with Cats, and Tree Dreams in Color. 

  1. Have I exhausted all avenues of trying to get traditionally published? This includes query letters, writer conferences, and asking people for referrals.
  2. Is this material at its best? Am I 100% sure that there is nothing I could do to improve the book's plot, characters, or other story elements? 
  3. Is this material fully edited? Is it free of typos and grammatical mistakes?
  4. Do I have the time and/or money to invest in producing the best product? (A book free of mistakes and formatted well with an eye catching cover.)
  5. Do I have the time and/or money to market this product?
If you are considering self-publishing; and you answered "no" to any of these questions, then you should not self-publish until you are ready. After all, your books are your products, and you do not want to sell inferior products. You may get initial sales but people won't come back.

Agree? Disagree? Want to know more? Leave me a blog comment or check me out on Facebook or Twitter and send me your questions.