Sunday, March 2, 2014

Indie News: Self-Published Authors are Getting Conned

The self-publishing boom has inspired a lot of writers to become self-published authors, but at what cost? Many companies and individuals are offering services designed to tempt indies. Unfortunately, some of those authors are getting conned.

For What It's Worth...

Almost 400,000 indie books were published in 2012, a 422 percent jump over the number of self-published titles created in 2007. There are new indie authors being born all the time...but you know the maxim states that a sucker is born every single minute.

Turning a word processing file into an ebook is not the simple process it seems to be. I happen to know this from experience, because I stumbled and bumbled my way through the entire procedure while looking up instructions for every single step on the Internet. What I discovered, what many indies discover, is that there are a lot of people out there willing to complete the process for me. 

A recent article exposed Author Solutions for grossly over-charging would-be authors for their services, which will run you several thousand dollars. You don't get editing or copyright services as part of the package, either -- for that, it costs extra. Three authors have already filed lawsuits against them.

It's just one example. There are a whole host of companies and individuals out there who take advantage of indie authors. It doesn't stop with the publishing process, either, though you could spend thousands paying for editing and formatting services. Promotional services can cost thousands of dollars as well, with sites like Kirkus charging indie authors to provide them with reviews.

Here's why it's a confidence game: you don't actually need those services. Like me, and thousands of others, you can self-publish your book completely on your own and almost free. You'd be amazed what a budget of $50 and lots of staring at the Internet can actually do. Indie authors are getting conned and being led astray by grossly inflated self-publishing and promotion costs, but that doesn't have to happen to you. I give self-publishing tips every single week for free. Learn how to do it all yourself, and you can't possibly get bamboozled into paying too much.

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  1. I so agree. I had to learn the hard way that the sites which charge are only benefiting the site owners. Miracles do happen but for the rest of us.......sweat, hard work and begging gets more attention :)

  2. Alastair BatchelorMarch 3, 2014 at 7:21 AM

    I must admit the first book I published with was an exacting and learning process. I also to had to check every move, but do commend Mark Coker on his easy to follow Style Guide, his advice on marketing and many other handy tips, Later I had to go through the same process on Create Space and Kindle, although I believe that having negotiated one mine field, I found the next much easier. Now I have published four books on each of the three sites above and have another all but finished. Now I wouldn't consider using any of the paid sites, but still problem is getting reviews and publicity. That just puts me in the same boat as most other self-published writers.

  3. Thanks for sharing your story!