In this new era of publishing, the major houses fear their business models are nearing extinction, eclipsed by the self-publishing industry. Catherine Ryan Howard, the author of Self-Printed: The Sane Person’s Guide to Self-Publishing (2nd Edition), calls it, “self-printing.”

The stigma of being an author who finances the publishing of his or her book has all but ceased to exist, according to Howard, a commercially successful self-published author. Self-Printed is a must-have for any would-be writer who’s flirting with bypassing the traditional channels of book publishing in favor of going out on their own—emphasis on the word “own.”

Vanity presses or “author houses” are not the solution either, she cautions. In most cases, these businesses charge hundreds, if not thousands of dollars to do a minimal amount of work to produce your book.  When the company makes more revenue through its services to the author than on actual book sales, it begs the question of its usefulness.

What Howard ultimately argues, is that money out of your pocket spent sparingly and wisely—for example, hiring a professional editor and a graphic designer to create a book cover. With Amazon serving as your distributor and social media as your promoter, self-publishing has never been so affordable or simple. Don’t be fooled, though. There’s plenty of work to be done, she advises her readers. And that’s what the book is about.

Although at times Howard’s book can be a bit overwhelming for a new author, her charm and dry wit makes for an enjoyable read. If ever there was a book designed for DIY authors in these times, Self-Printed (2nd Edition) is at the top of the best.

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