I commend you! You are a creator and not just a consumer of media. You are willing to
impact someone through a story, and I bet it’s because a story impacted you.
You are eager, and you want to learn all there is to book production. Here is my advice to you…
1. Read a lot. See what is out there. Compare. Look at how you can improve what you want
to make to what already exists. This is going to help you more than you know. You will see
a vast range of styles as well as vocabulary being used, and it will help you find your style.
I read about 380-450 children’s books a year. Not only is it fun, but it has helped me more
than I thought it ever would!
2. Give yourself plenty of time. Writing the book is the easy part. It’s where you have all the
creative fun. It’s the other stuff that takes determination to get through. You can see next
month’s post on some helpful hints on the steps to publishing. Nevertheless, you want to
have ample time to read, reread, and reread. Even with a children’s book, you will be amazed
at how many word tweaks you do!
3. Put funds away. It’s expensive making a book. You have to pay for ISBN numbers, and you
have to pay for at least one proof (I’ve done several already) of your book to see how it looks
in production. You have to pay for copyrighting your book. You need a basic website, and if
you are not able to do a lot of the marketing, or illustration of your book, you will need to pay
for this too. It all takes money. Make a budget sheet before you start. This budget she is
going to prepare you for publishing.
4. It’s time-consuming. Be prepared to work hard. No one is going to make you work on it,
and you will have to say no to things you might want to do. You will spend a lot of time
thinking, planning, and working by yourself. You must be disciplined.
5. Here is the biggest one. You have to realize you are not going to make a fortune. Yes, I know
some authors do, but those are few and far between. The lesson I learned from other authors
as I started my journey were some books might take years to break even from the cost of
production, and you gotta play “the long game.” Phew! That’s a hard one, isn’t it?
If you go into the children’s book realm having the wrong expectations, you are going to be utterly
disappointed, but if you do it because you love it, you are going to find fulfillment in other areas like these…
- Having the ability to create something from nothing. There is something extremely fulfilling in this.
- Having your story impact another person in a profound way. You never know who might pick it up.
- Having something that sticks around for a while. Books have a long shelf life!
- Being able to hold your book one day and realize you created it. There is nothing like the smell of ink on paper!
- Having done something most people only talk about doing!
Finally, let me finish with this thought. You can get stuck and not progress forward when working on a book.
I’ve been there. I have a problem with wanting perfection, and I can’t always get perfection on somethings
because it might require an outside source (like the printing press), which can cause me to want to quit.
Sometimes done is better than perfect.
If you want to follow my posts on how to publish a children’s book, PT. 1 starts here: