A quick word to my self-published author-friends. Please know that I totally love and respect what you’re doing. So many people think self-publishing a book is easy, but the truth is you are totally on your own out there when it comes to marketing and selling your book. You are joining blog tours, doing interviews and networking, networking, networking. You are all amazingly brave and entrepreneurial. As I wrote in a recent blog post, if my traditional-publishing travels for Baby Grand do not turn out the way I would like, I would indeed consider self-publishing and make a go of it on my own.
But, please, I beg of you, have your book professionally edited (or at least read by grammarphile friends) before you self-publish. A friend of mine recently self-published a novel, and eager as I was to see a “sneak peek” of the book on Amazon, I immediately became disillusioned when right there in the second sentence was a grammatical error.
I know that might not be a big deal for some — hey, Amanda Hocking has sold millions of books that she herself says could have been better edited — but for me it’s a huge turnoff. Do traditionally published books have typos and grammatical errors? Yes, but they’re usually few and far between. Recently, my 14-year-old son had to put a self-published book down because there were “just too many” spelling mistakes. That’s a shame.
Yes, it’s the book’s story that is most important, but the way the story is told is pretty darn important too. And as more and more people self-publish, you want your book to rise above the masses, and one surefire way to do that is to be sure that your spelling and grammar are as close to perfect as possible.