October 1


What It Takes To Self-Publish A Book

By Odyssa

October 1, 2021

I'm self-publishing a book and not publishing through a company. There will be no contracts, no split payments. Writers who self-publish are called independent/indie authors. 

The World of Publishing

There are 2 types of publishing. First is traditional publishing, where the author writes, and the company does everything else: editing, marketing, designing, etc. J.K. Rowling's books in the US are being published by Scholastic Inc.

Self-publishing a book means the author is doing everything a publishing company does with the help of professionals, of course. 

That includes working with an editor, an illustrator, a book cover designer, a blurb writer and a marketer. Some writers even hire ghostwriters so they can avoid the writing part of making a book.

I learned about self-publishing through author Joanna Penn. I bought her books through Amazon and that introduced me to the world of self-publishing. I use her books as a manual to follow. It's been so helpful!!

I'm still finding my way through and I've learned a few important lessons that I want to share with you today. 


I transferred all my notes from my notebook to a Google Document. As the document got bigger, it became too slow and tiresome to manage the format. I couldn't see my chapters, and using either Word or Google Doc doesn't tell me where I was in my book. So I looked for an editing software made for writers.

I tried LivingWriter for a couple of weeks but it was also slow (or is it my laptop?!). There was a significant lag time when I dragged chapters or copied bodies of text. It was super frustrating and wasteful of time. It also comes with a monthly fee. 

I stopped using it in favor of Reedsy. It has a nice interface and - no kidding-  everything a writer needs is there. Articles, how-tos, tutorials, freelancers. The best part about Reedsy is I can take care of my layout, then export my book to an ebook format -epub and mobi- for free! I don't have to hire someone to do that for me.

If you plan to write a book, try Reedsy. 


I go to Fiverr to look for freelancing experts. I found my editor there (she's been an author since she was 19!), as well as my designers.  

I just 'hired' a couple more people to do other services for the book, which I don't have time for anymore. They save me a lot of time and make this process simpler.

When you use Fiverr, don't miss reading reviews, and being very clear about the project to avoid issues later. Know the output you want. 

Writer Groups

Writing is a solitary activity. That's why I find it helpful to be part of a writers' groups on Facebook. They're all supportive and willing to help newbies like me. 

As I said in this article about yoga, it's valuable to be around people who share the same struggles and breakthroughs as you. 

To be surrounded by a group of people with the same mindset and goals matter so much when writing a book because the production part is tedious and time-consuming. 

Here's what I can share so far! I'm pretty sure there will be more in the next few weeks. I'll document everything here. 

I'm still writing in Medium and here's the latest.

Thanks for reading!


About the author

Odyssa is a writer from the Philippines. She is the author of Like A New Sun Rising: A Collection of Poems on Love. When not working or writing at home, she's out walking their dogs. She enjoys traveling, practices yoga, gets lost in books and Korean drama. To her, making time for a daily practice or ritual is the best gift to one's self.

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