Although writing can be great fun, it can also be a lot of hard work. Here are some tips that we have collected from writers over our years in self-publishing.
Use a writing schedule.
Setting a schedule will keep your progress on track. It will also give you a set amount of time that you can then slot into your daily routine. Once you get going, you’ll most likely find that you can work several more hours once you’re on a roll. It also helps to select somewhere in your home that you can work in, at least to keep your notes etc.
Know your target market.
Finding out more about who you are writing for will ensure that you write about things that they like and are interested in. Once you have determined who your niche market is, research their interests.
Illustrations and images will need to be a certain size and quality to print well. Jpegs are the preferred choice as they can be resized and optimised for print. They will also work well on the web and in e-readers.
There are days when writer’s block will just take over. On these days use the time wisely to work on research and marketing. This will help to keep your schedule on track. Make notes about what you need to do in addition to the content of your book so that it can be your ‘go to’ list for days when the last thing you want to do is write.
Use Word for writing.
You can get the format worked out and add images. You should then save the file into a PDF (Portable Document File) so that it will keep its format for the printer. PDF files are more stable when it comes to not changing the format.
Size matters when it comes to costs. The average size for a paperback book is 5 inches wide by 8 inches tall (half the size of an A4 piece of paper). You can set this size on your Word document so that you can see how it will look when it’s in print. Popular fonts are Verdana and Arial with either 11 or 12 points. With 40 lines per page, this will give you in the region of 250 words per page.
The more you do yourself for self-publishing, the better. Otherwise you’ll need to outsource some of your work and this will increase your cost. However, you should still seek help from somebody else when it comes to proofreading your book to look for typos and other errors.