That is a very personal question and I think the answer is different for each and every self-published author. For some, it will be money – either readers being willing to fork out their hard-earned cash in exchange for book they wrote, or being able to keep the lights on and food in the cupboard purely from doing what they love. For others, it will be acclaim – five star reviews and a home atop the bestseller lists. And some self-publishers will be pleased as punch just to hold a copy of their book in their hands.For me I have to say that what I love most about self-publishing – and what I consider to be a measure of my success – is that I can do something about my writing career other than wait by the phone. I’m in control of what I achieve in my career in the next month, year, five years, etc. – at least to a degree. Prior to self-publishing if someone else didn’t say “yes”, I had no career. Now I’ve plenty to be getting on while I chase other dreams and there’s a great sense of personal achievement when I look back at all I’ve managed to do by myself.
Self-publishing success is measured differently by everyone – and that’s a good thing. It should be a personal goal that will make YOU happy when you reach it. So I have to say I think the most important measure of success as a self-published author is how happy I feel about being a self-published author and how my self-publishing adventures are going. That’s enough of a yardstick for me!
“SELF-PRINTED is my self-publishing bible. It taught me how to format, create and upload my e-books and print-on-demand paperbacks. It showed me practical things such as how to build a website/blog and how to promote my books. More importantly, it taught me how to compete with the professionals. Just look at the results – The Estate Series has sold nearly 100,000 copies and following that I got a traditional book deal with Thomas & Mercer too, so I’m now a hybrid author. Jam-packed full of hints and tips all in one place, I’m always referring back to it. In a word, it’s priceless.” – Mel Sherratt, author of The Estate Series and DS Allie Shenton Series
9 thoughts on “The Self-Printed 3.0 Splash!”
Catherine Ryan Howard is wonderful. She should consider herself the midwife to thousands of self-published books!
Couldn’t agree more. She’s an inspiration, and witty with it. It’s an honour to feature her on my blog.
Pingback: #SelfPrintedSplash: The Qs and As (and the Winners!) | Catherine, Caffeinated
Wow, that was a great answer. So Carol, what is your most important measure of success?
I’d really have to think about it as there may be more than one vying for ‘most important’. For most of the time, success is to me being able to sleep easy at night.
What about you?
My #1 is to write the best book I can. Unfortunately that means that I spent five years on my first book and will spend another two on my second book. But I’ve also become a better writer in the process, so I guess that’s a secondary measure of success.
Making money is also important, not that I ever expected to make a living from writing. But still, it would be nice to at least make back the money I spent on editing and cover design.
I’m curious about “being able to sleep easy at night”. Do you mean financially, or knowing that you have done your best? It’s something I’ve been grappling a lot with lately, too.
Your question is intriguing because there are so many possible answers, and post people probably want to achieve every “measurement of success” to some degree.
To me, sleeping easy at night has two components: having done a good job, and also having leisure time to unwind and get a good night’s sleep instead of staying up late/getting up at dawn to write. Because that’s exactly what one does when chasing success. I find it liberating to be able to turn work down, which in my view is a measure of success.
And some self-publishers will be pleased as punch just to hold a copy of their book in their hands … Yup, that’s me! NB: the pocket money earned also makes me smile. 🙂
That’s a measure of success too, Glynis. As long as the books aren’t on their way to a permanent home in the garage. Which I know yours are not!