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The Self-Publishing Manual
By Dan Poynter

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The Self-Publishing Manual

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The Self-Publishing Manual, 14th Edition
How to Write, Print and Sell Your Own Book
Large Print Edition
By Dan Poynter
Para Publishing: Santa Barbara, CA (2003)
ISBN: 1-56860-115-8
Genre: Reference - Publishing

Reviewed by Rochelle Caviness - January 24, 2005

Dan Poynter's book, The Self-Publishing Manual: How to Write, Print and Sell Your Own Book is just what it claims to be - a book about writing and self-publishing your manuscript. From choosing the subject you want to write about to shipping the finished product to your customers, this book provides a comprehensive guide that will guide you through the complete process of writing and publishing your own book. While much of the information contained in this book is applicable to self-publishing a work of fiction, Poynter's focus is on the nonfiction market.

The Self-Publishing Manual will not teach you how to write a nonfiction book, if needed, there are numerous books out there that will help you in that regard. What this book will help you with is focusing upon a saleable idea, and how to keep your focus on the bottom line - in this case the market you are targeting. Throughout, Poynter reminds you that when writing your book, focusing on how you package your book can be even more important than what is inside the cover. For example, Poynter recommends that you choose a tile that can be easily read on the book's spine and that you write the back-cover blurb before you even begin to write your book.

Only a single chapter is devoted to the task of actually writing your book, however within this chapter are a number of useful tips that will aid you as you write your book. The rest of the book consists of scholarly advice on the essential fundamentals of self-publishing; how to start your own publishing company, the mechanics of actually publishing your book, and how to promote and sell your work. Poynter is well placed to write this book as he has written more than 100 books, many of which he self-published via his company Para Publishing. For example, this book is an example of a self-published book, one that has already gone through 14 editions.

Although geared toward readers who are considering, or planning, to self-publish a book, this book also serves as a phenomenal resource for writers pursuing a traditional publishing track. It provides a concise and thorough overview of the publishing process from how a book is copyrighted to the different types of paper that can be used to print a book. As well, most traditional publishers now require, or at least encourage, their writers to actively work at promoting their own books. Within the pages of The Self-Publishing Manual you will find a wealth of advice on how to promote and increase the market share for your book.

The Self-Publishing Manual is essential reading for anyone even remotely interested in self-publishing a book. By the time you read through this volume, you'll have a good idea as to whether or not you want to undertake such a project. The Self-Publishing Manual also serves as an all-in-one workshop in self-publishing in which you will not only benefit from Poynter's expertise and insights into in the field, but also from the plethora of resource lists included in this volume. The large print edition of this essential self-publishing handbook is printed in a dark 16-point font, with headers and major section titles printed in bold letters. This book is also available in a standard print edition, as well as in a PDF format.


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