I’m back! Did you wonder where I wandered? Well… just to give you an update, my book “Paint the Black,” is on its way. I am receiving the test copy from Amazon within the week, and it should be available for purchase on Kindle Direct around the same time.

Today I wanted to write a bit about the process of becoming a self-published author. My journey to becoming an indie author, is not what I call… common. I would love to say, I’ve read every best-selling novel, along with all the classics, and have written stories since I was a little boy, but all of that would be a lie.

Although I do hold a Master’s degree in Education, I only just started writing about three years ago, when I retired from coaching college baseball. The first novel I ever wrote, was a young adult novel about a twelve-year-old boy whose fantasy writings give him an escape from his horrible real life. I plan to finish that series and make it a trilogy, but that will come after a few more fiction novels about baseball; a passion of mine that I just so happen to know a lot about.

For “Paint the Black,” I used CreateSpace. CreateSpace is a company owned by Amazon, and is an excellent way to get yourself published. Not only that, but there is also a link between CS and Kindle Direct, so not only can you publish a paperback, but you can upload your ebook as well. I believe this is truly the best way for any unknown author to go. I can’t recommend them enough.

Now let me talk about the process. The easiest part about being an author, is writing. At the time that I decided to embark on this quest, I really didn’t know what I was getting in to. Everything that followed the finish of the manuscript has been the most difficult.

First off, let me start by telling you: hire a professional editor and book designer. Everything else you can do by yourself, but you NEED these two done by a professional. My editor, Deb Hall, was nothing short of astounding. She took a very flawed manuscript and turned it into exactly what I wanted in a finished product.

My book designer Ida, from amygdala designs, was equally as important. She took something that I only imagined in my mind and put it to paper. Her vision for the cover mirrored mine, and turned out beautiful.

Now onto the formatting. This was by far one of the most time consuming efforts I had. It took me four months to write the complete MS and another four months to get everything edited and formatted to my liking. It was a learning process, but by no means do I regret any of it. I hope all my hard work will show off in both the paperback, and ebook.

Marketing, marketing, marketing, will be your biggest hurdle. Even though you may have a wonderfully written masterpiece, it will make no difference unless people know your book is out there. I’ve found Goodreads, Amazon, and blogs valuable resources. Plus, the more books you have available, the bigger following you will eventually get.

Lastly, use beta-readers. Beta-readers look over your MS for any flaws in the storyline, character development, and pace of the story. I can’t thank my beta-readers enough. They’ve added depth to the story, and I’ve used almost everything they’ve recommended.

I would be happy to speak with anyone who is interested in taking this journey. With CreateSpace and KDP anything is possible for indie authors. Plus, in my understanding, unless a publishing house is willing to give you a sizable advance, you will make more money in royalties when using CreateSpace and KDP.