October 1, 2015

Self Publishing? What’s Your Distribution Plan? — Part Two

Stick figure at a chalkboard with text: Fiction University Day! What's Your Distribution Plan?

It’s time once again for my monthly guest post over at Janice Hardy’s Fiction University. We’ve been walking through the process of making choices about our self-publishing options.

Indie publishing isn’t made up of just one decision to put us on one path. The choice to self-publish is just the first of dozens, maybe hundreds, of decisions we’re going to have to make as part of our indie career.

My series about Indie Publishing Paths at Fiction University is working to highlight some of those choices and give us a few guidelines for figuring out how to make the best decisions for us. To that end, I kicked off the series with the topic of knowing our goals.

Depending on our goals, we might want to make different choices about pricing, release schedules, or distribution. I’m focusing on each of those areas in the next segment of the series, calling them the how much, when, and where of our decision process.

Janice Hardy's Fiction University banner

Last month, we identified four options for the distribution—the where—of our books, and we started with a closer look at two of those distribution options. This month, we’re looking at the other two distribution options and when they might work best for us.

This month’s options covers working directly with retailers and going exclusive with Amazon. The latter option is especially tricky. “Should I enroll in Amazon’s KDP Select?” is a common question on all forums related to self-publishing, and everyone has different opinions.

Hopefully by digging into the pros and cons of each of our options, we’ll be able to think beyond the opinions of others and figure out when one choice might make more sense for us than another—or when a combination might work even better. There are no right or wrong answers—only what works best for us.

However, depending on our goals, we might find one (or more than one) option a better fit for us. Once we know which way we want to go, we’ll know which tips to listen to for best practices and the like.

I hope you’ll join me at Fiction University for this month’s post!

What are the most common choices you’ve seen for distribution of our books? What makes some options seem better than others to you? Do you want to go with wide distribution, or does it not matter to you? What are your reasons behind that attitude?

Join Jami in her upcoming workshop:
Get ready for NaNo by learning how to do just enough story development to write faster with “Lost Your Pants? The Impatient Writers Guide to Plotting a Story.”

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Kristen Steele

Writing a book is a difficult task in itself, but completing your manuscript is just the beginning. Having a strong distribution plan is going to be one of the biggest difference makers in whether or not your book is a success.

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