My journey to becoming a published author

Until about 2 weeks ago I was just a writer with unpublished fiction work and published journalist work. However, I was holding onto a contract for publication of my very first book, I had the contract for a month at that point. 

I was holding onto it because I had 60 days to make a decision on whether I’d sign with Solstice Publishing or not. 

My husband and I were in the middle of buying a home and I was putting off having a lawyer look over it. To be honest I was also putting it off because I had sent my manuscript to several other publishing houses and was waiting to hear back. 

I want to make one thing clear I did not settle with Solstice because no other publisher wanted to publish my work. I signed with them before I had every query answered because I felt they would be a great fit for me. 

After having a lawyer look over the contract and talking to my family I decided I would sign it. I signed my contract the same day we signed for our house. Needless to say it was a very exciting day and I couldn’t be happier with the decision. 

Now I chose to publish traditionally instead of self publishing. I have a lot of reason of why a chose to publish traditionally, a few being: I didn’t want to have to try to walk myself through the whole publication process alone; I wanted to have a group of people that would have my back; and I didn’t want to have to pay several different people (editors and designers) in order to publish. Also anyone can self publish anything (whether good or bad) and going the traditional route I faced a lot of rejection. I am sure I will also face more when the book is released. 

The upside to traditonal publishing is you get all the help in editing, designing, layout and they put it up for you without paying a penny upfront. A lot of publishers also print or do print-on-demand. Whereas doing self publishing you pay people to do all of that, which is not cheap, then if you print it and you have to find bookstores that will carry your book. 

The upside to self publishing is you keep all the money from sales. But my question would be is it really worth it, you don’t make a profit until you’ve paid yourself back for the editing, designing and printing. That is the only upside I see, there may be more but not that I’ve seen. 

With traditional publishing you also have help with promoting your book(s). 

For me traditional publishing had more upsides than self publishing. However, if you are self publishing good luck to you and I hope you have great success (I wish the same for all of those traditionally publishing as well). 

How I was able to get a contract! 

BEFORE YOU START THIS PROCESS MAKE SURE YOUR MANUSCRIPT IS FINISHED! Most, if not all, publishers won’t accept an unfinished manuscript. 

  1.  I did A LOT of research on publishers that publish my genre.
  2. The best thing to do is google (yes really) romance/YA/sci-fi/mystery publishers. Make sure you are using whatever genre you are writing for. 
  3. I sent out my manuscript to all publishers I thought would be a good fit and that were looking for my genre. **note: you will run into publishers that are not taking submission or are only seeking particular genres/sub genres. 
  4. ALWAYS made sure my format was set to the format that the publisher was looking for (this is an absolute must)! You should be able to find submission guidelines for each publisher (they are all different) 
  5. Then it is just a waiting game. Sometimes you will hear back quickly but most publishers tell you it could take up to 12 weeks. Which is a really long time to wait but it is worth it. 

There are a lot of other blogs out there that tell you every single step you need but that’s the basics. 

Also you may see a lot of blogs or people in Facebook writing groups telling you that you need an agent to be published. You do not need an agent; let me say it again. YOU DO NOT NEED AN AGENT. I received a contract without an agent. 

So far on my publishing contract… 

Since I signed two weeks ago not a lot has happened, haha. Again this is just part of it. 

Right now I have done my headshots for the back of the print book. 

I have written my author bio, blurb and set up all my social media accounts. 

I have also searched for ideas for my cover and sent them to the cover artist. I have already received it back! 

That is probably the best thing so far, getting my cover art back! 🙂 I couldn’t be happier with it. 

So now I am waiting for an editor to start helping me with edits. I am sure we will go through a few edits and then and final review before it’s released! 

Solstice Publishing has been amazing so far and I have made a few acquaintances, which is always nice. 

<<< C U R R E N T L Y >>> 

Currently I am working on the Mending book two of the Unwritten Series as well as a few other books. A different book, I think I’m gonna name If only he knew, I am unsure if this will be a single book or a series, and a poker series. I have also started thinking about some children’s books I want to write. Some of these I only have the plot and the characters down but will hopefully start working on them when I finish Mending and If he only knew. 

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