Monday, July 5, 2010

Guest Blogger, Katie Salidas

Please welcome Katie Salidas back to Immortyl Revolution! 



Katie is on her Authors Supporting Authors Virtual Tour.  A lot of new writers have questions about the types of publishing available.  I am with a small, traditional publisher, L&L Dreamspell, and I've found the experience very positive.  Katie took a bold step and started her own publishing company.  A lot of hard work went into her endeavor, and I wanted her to share some of what she learned about self-publishing.  So without further ado, here's Katie!

Self publishing is often thrown around like a dirty word. Many people think of it as a scapegoat for those of us who cannot get traditionally published.  I tend to think otherwise but, then again, I am a bit biased since I obviously chose this route.  I had a product (a book series) that I worked very hard on. I attempted the traditional route with lukewarm results.

After I was laid off at my old job, I had a lot of free time on my hands and very little new job prospects. After a heart to heart with my husband, he gave me the nudge to “give this a shot.” Rather than go the Lulu route, I wanted to try and make something more of this so we (my husband and I) started up Rising Sign Books, LLC. This will be the publishing label for my Immortalis Series as well as my Pleasures and Fantasy, erotic stories.

I am not here to tell you what you should do. Each writer must take their own path.  But, (there is always a but) if you choose to go down this path, don’t treat it like the easy way out. The failure of many self-published author is in the lack of effort put in to push your product. Don’t think that by having that book in your hand that you are done. Before you decide on publishing anything you should already have a marketing strategy at least loosely mapped out. 

Note: Traditional publishers will want this as well. Know your market and have ideas on how to sell to them no matter what you choose.  

Also, please note that to self-publish, successfully, you will do 10x the amount of work that a traditionally published author would do.  So plan on rolling up your sleeves and getting your hands dirty if this is what you choose to do.

Here is a short list of the key things you will need to do as a self-publisher.

1) Write the book.

That’s pretty obvious, but hey, if you aren’t finished with this step, you aren’t ready to self publish. Actually, your book should have been through multiple revisions and rounds through a critiquing group before you even consider self-publishing.

Now, that doesn’t mean there won’t be any more editing or revisions, but, like with querying for the traditional route, you want to start with something you feel is 100% ready.

2) Have a Pro, edit the book.

Your book may have been several rounds with a critique group and you may have a masters in English, but don’t send out a book that hasn’t had a pro look at it. Self-Publishing is already looked down on, don’t give reviewers another reason to put a nail in your coffin.

3) Printing and Distribution.

Unless you plan on going door to door with a stack of books, you want a printer who can distribute to the big guys like Amazon.com

(Oh, I should mention I am working with the assumption you are using a POD model. That is where your printer is printing a copy for each order processed. This means no worries about warehousing.)

You can use Amazon’s Create Space/Book Surge to have your books put together and distributed. Check with them on what services they offer too.

No matter who you choose, you want to have your printer selected before you move on to further steps in the book process. Each printer will require things to be formatted specifically for them. They will also tell you what trim sizes and paper selections you can use. This information will be extremely helpful when moving on to Cover design and book layout.

4) Book Layout.

This can be done in word, but it is quite a frustrating process. The layout is how you book will look when printed; all of those fun little details like: headers and footers, font, page breaks, page size, margins, etc…

You can hire out for this, or you can look for programs that help you do it yourself. I found one on Self-pub.net that was quite helpful.

http://www.self-pub.net/wizard.html

Now, remember that each different format you decide to put your work into will have different layout requirements (see your printers FAQ’s for specifics). Before you finish this step and move on to the next, you will want to know and have a layout for each respective format.

Ebook

Paperback

Hardbound

As a cost saving tip, I’d suggest dropping the Hardbound version for your first attempt. Ebook and Paperback are plenty.


5) Book Cover Design.

Finding a reasonably priced designer can be a fun venture. Do your research and ask around to find your designers. Social networking sites like Facebook are wonderful for this, there are lots of groups out there with aspiring novelists, they are a wealth of information and leads.

One note to remember here, your designer will want to know some things before they make your cover. I learned this the hard way. Know what your book dimensions will be before this step. Know the page count, know the size of the book, paper or Hb. Do your book layout first.



6) ISBN’s.

Every book has one so you will have to purchase these.

http://www.isbn.org/standards/home/index.asp


7) PCN or LCCN.

If you want your book able to be on library shelves, you will need one of these numbers.

http://pcn.loc.gov/pcn001.html

Please note, you will have to send them a copy of the final product after publication.


8) Copyright.

File online! Yay!

http://www.copyright.gov/

Katie, it sounds like you really did your homework.  Whew, I give you a lot of credit.  Thanks for joining me today! Please read on for some info on Katie's books and my review of Immortalis, Carpe Noctem.




Bleeding to death after brutal mugging on the campus of UNLV, Twenty-five year old Alyssa, is rescued by the cold and aloof, vampire, Lysander. Taking pity on her, he shares the gift-and curse-of immortality. She awakens as a vampire and is soon devastated by harsh realities of her new way of life: the loss of her friends, her independence, and her humanity.

As if having her humanity stripped away was not enough to make life interesting, Alyssa finds out her “turning”, did not go unnoticed by the rest of undead society. Old enemies; an ancient sect of vampire hunters, known as the Acta Sanctorum, as well as a powerful Vampire mistress, each set plans in motion to destroy both Alyssa and Lysander.

Only by accepting her newfound immortality, seizing the night, will Alyssa hope to survive. She and Lysander must fight together against two sets of enemies bent on destroying them both.

Review

Immortalis Carpe Noctem is a fast-paced read for those who enjoy a darker urban fantasy novel. These vampires have a bite and aren’t afraid to go for the jugular. Many of the old traditions of vampire lore are upheld but presented with a new twist. Author, Katie Salidas sets her story against the glittering backdrop of Las Vegas, (complete with a few hands of Texas Hold ‘em) and creates a world where rival factions of vampires and a fanatical religious sect are engaged in a bloody war. Newborn vampire, Alyssa is caught in the crossfire of this centuries-old conflict between the powerful Callisto and Acta Sanctorum assassin, Santino. The battle threatens to tear the heroine from her master, Lysander and their coven, the Peregrinus clan. If you thirst for a red-blooded portrayal of vampires, you should definitely take a look at this book.


















Immortalis is also sold at:

Smashwords (multi format ebook): http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/10237

Barnes & Noble:   http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Immortalis-Carpe-Noctem/Katie-Salidas/e/9780984419609/?itm=1&USRI=immortalis+carpe+noctem

Kindle















Publisher (Author Signed Copies)

http://www.risingsignbooks.com/

Katie also has a new erotica release:

HOUSE OF IMMORTAL PLEASURES



Blindfolded and kidnapped, Daphne is whisked away to the famed, House of Immortal Pleasures, a Vampire-run Brothel in Pahrump, Nevada.

Sometimes the only way to mend a broken heart is to get back in the saddle. At least that is how Daphne’s friends see it. And since Daphne isn’t showing any signs of letting that happen, they take it into their own hands. With a few shots of liquid courage, a pat on the ass, and a donated gold card, Daphne is unwillingly sent into fantasy room 123 to meet her creature of the night, Connor.

It’s Connor’s job to seduce and entice Daphne to try all the expensive, sexual services on the menu. And he is prepared to do just that, until he peers into her mind and sees the damage done by her broken heart. After learning of her past pain, Connor’s plans change. No more is this a game of seduction to pad the pockets of the brothel owner. Connor decides to lavish Daphne with real attention and affection. Something she desperately needs. He will heal her heart the only way he can, by showing her she is beautiful, desirable, and sexy.

http://www.amazon.com/House-of-Immortal-Pleasures-ebook/dp/B003NSBSVG/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2&s=digital-text&qid=1278369199&sr=1-2










8 comments:

Katie S said...

Thanks for the opportunity to appear again on your blog!

Leilani @Leilani Loves Books said...

Very informative! Thanks!!
Makes me think about self publishing! Anything to get my book on shelves!

Katie S said...

Hey Leilani! Thanks for being an awesome supporter of my work.

On Self-Publishing, just make sure you take your time and go through each step slowly. You want to do it right. But you can do it!

Jess C Scott said...

I like how Vegas is a recurring theme in your work, heh [I grew up in a city (Singapore) -- and I guess I use that as a recurring theme too]!

Kudos to you with the writing/publishing -- I decided to go with CreateSpace coz it just seemed easier, for starters. Love the name of your publishing imprint [my rising sign is Aries] ;)

Katie S said...

Thanks Jess. My rising sign is Scorpio a sign known for "making things happen." That was what sparked the name for the company.

Vegas is a fun place to write about. I bet Singapore is too. It's all part of write what you know. =)

Jess C Scott said...

Oh coolness! I'm a Venus Scorpio, so I can relate to the intensity and drive of "making things happen" ^^.

I've been to Vegas once. It was tons of fun. *nods at "write what you know"*

Denise Verrico said...

Katie is such an interesting person. I always love to hear what she has to say.

Katie S said...

Aww, thanks Denise. Right back at ya. I need to have you back on my blog as well. I'd love to hear your experience with your publisher!