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The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing: Everything You Need to Know to…

by Tom Ross, Marilyn Heimberg Ross

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280573,614 (3.5)None
This book empowers writers to publish their own work with minimal risk and maximum profits. Inside is complete step-by-step guidance on publishing and marketing a book with new information on podcasts, blogs, webinars, e-publishing, print-on-demand and e-rights. A detailed marketing plan and marketing timetable, plus samples of sales letters, cover designs, catalog sheets and forms are also provided. An in-depth discussion of exclusive distributors, plus recent changes in bookselling make this book extremely topical.… (more)
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Showing 5 of 5
Most books, I'm content to read it from the library and make notes. This book had so many resources and so many notes that I had to buy the book after getting it from the library and then use a highlighter as I went through my second reading.

Ross's detailed check lists of each step gives me the confidence to know that nothing falls between the cracks and I have to step in it later...Her style although teaching is personable and engaging.

She does take you from non-published to published completely and with practical helps. She gives options when available and gives pros and cons to help you decide for yourself what would be best for you.

Great resource. ( )
  Sonya.Contreras | May 21, 2017 |
I truly hated this book. If I had to live with these authors I would go screaming into the night. Endlessly eager, living with the truly American hustling ideal, convinced the only reason anyone would write a book is to make a pile of money fast, commending successful titles like "How To Have A Flat Stomach" and "How My Road To Spiritual Healing Earned Me Over Ten Million Dollars The First Year And You Too Can Have It All Now!!!"

Not for me. I just want to write what others will enjoy, get pleasure from, and pay a small but fair price for it. ( )
  ChrisNewton | Mar 18, 2016 |
Great book for an in-depth view of self-publishing; however, like with so many of these kinds of books, a lot of the resources were outdated. ( )
  JaimiTaylor | Feb 23, 2012 |
Great book for an indepth view of self-publishing; however, like with so many of these kidns of books, a lot of the resources were outdated. ( )
  AauviHouse | Feb 21, 2012 |
Packed with pearls of wisdom as incandescent as raindrops

Of the half-dozen or so self-publishing books I've poured over in the past few months, "The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing" is by far the most helpful guide that's crossed my desk. Although it does have a few major flaws, overall it's an excellent reference for those interested in publishing and/or marketing their own work.

In just over 500 pages, the Ross's discuss the basics of self-publishing, covering everything from electronic publishing to print on demand (POD). They tell readers how to choose and write about enjoyable and profitable topics; revise and refine your manuscript; manufacture your masterpiece; create a publicity buzz, even before your book's in print; market your product in various venues, including print and electronic media, on TV and the radio, and in bookstores, libraries, and conference halls; pursue subsidiary rights; establish and operate a small publishing business; and negotiate with the "Goliath" publishers. They also tell you how to penetrate oft-overlooked markets, such as schools, libraries, catalogs, and retail outlets.

As a newbie to the self-publishing scene, I found "The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing" to be an excellent introductory resource. It's literally overflowing with nuggets of useful information. I suspect that publishing veterans will most likely find some of the information obvious or commonsensical, but again, as someone with limited knowledge of the publishing industry, this book was a real eye-opener. Compared to the other self-publishing guides out there, the Ross's version takes the cake.

Of course, that's not to suggest that "The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing" is perfect - quite the contrary. I personally found the Ross's writing style to be somewhat grating. I understand that they probably crafted this volume for general audiences, and thus had to write for the "lowest common denominator." However, I still found their folksy, familiar tone a bit annoying. I suppose it could have been worse, though - thank goodness they didn't stoop to the level of, say, a "For Dummies" book or an "Idiot's Guide"! Those books are so watered down that they're simply unreadable!

Also, in Chapter 5, which offers writing tips, they advise readers to use metaphors, similes, analogies, and anecdotes to make writing more lively. They follow their own suggestion to the point of overkill - they literally throw in a simile or metaphor every two or three pages. The text itself stands at a hefty 436 pages - you do the math! After page 15, this technique became as annoying as a sharp stone stuck in your sneaker. (I've got a few hundred more where that came from!)

My final gripe concerns the "Web Sites, Wisdom, and Whimsey" section that the authors included at the end of every single chapter. Far from providing any useful information, these additional four pages just struck me as a way to beef of their book so that they could jack up the price. Again, at four pages a chapter, and 22 chapters total, that's an extra 88 pages that they could have omitted entirely (just think of all that wasted paper!). The "Web Sites" portion of this section would have been helpful IF they had included a new web site. Instead, they usually featured a site that they'd already mentioned within the chapter itself. I didn't see any "Wisdom" to speak of, and the "Whimsey" was silly and self-indulgent. Consider the following: "The nice thing about living in a small town like we do is that when you don't know what you're doing, someone else does." Huh!? What does that have to do with self-publishing? This is something that belongs in the Ross's Christmas card, for crying out loud - not in a book on publishing!

Now, I'm a busy lady - I simply don't have the time to waste on this kind of stuff. Sure, the "Web Sites, Wisdom, and Whimsey" is easily skipped over, especially since it's clearly labeled and placed at the end of the chapter. But that's not the point - if you buy this book, you're PAYING for the extraneous junk they throw in, whether you like it or not. At $19.99, "The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing" is priced about 25% more than many other paperback self-publishing books - no doubt because it runs a whopping 521 pages. Had the authors just stuck to the topic, they could have trimmed at least a hundred pages from the book (and a few bucks from the price). Or perhaps they could have more adequately addressed e-publishing, which to my disappointment was a subject that they failed to do justice.

Nonetheless, I gave "The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing" four stars because it is fairly helpful, well-organized, and packed with info, unlike many similar books I've seen. Just be sure to brace yourself for those similes!

By the way, the Ross's followed up on "The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing" with "Jump Start Your Book Sales," which is essentially a guide to marketing your self-published book. If you just need publicity/marketing tips, skip "The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing" and go right to "Jump Start Your Book Sales." Buying both would be a waste of money, as the authors recycle their marketing advice from one book to the next.

http://www.easyvegan.info/2005/05/10/the-complete-guide-to-self-publishing-4th-e... ( )
  smiteme | Dec 4, 2006 |
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Ross, Marilyn Heimbergmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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This book empowers writers to publish their own work with minimal risk and maximum profits. Inside is complete step-by-step guidance on publishing and marketing a book with new information on podcasts, blogs, webinars, e-publishing, print-on-demand and e-rights. A detailed marketing plan and marketing timetable, plus samples of sales letters, cover designs, catalog sheets and forms are also provided. An in-depth discussion of exclusive distributors, plus recent changes in bookselling make this book extremely topical.

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