The journey to self-publishing has been long and honestly exhausting but I’ve learned a lot along the way so for that I’m grateful. I didn’t want to pursue the self-publishing route instead I wanted to go the traditional way and let a publishing company deal with all the hassle but I live in the Caribbean and the island I live on doesn’t have that option for my genre of poetry, urban contemporary poetry as I like to call it so self-publishing was my best bet.
After I had compiled all my poems, I printed and stapled them in the form of an A5 booklet then I visited the only printery on the island and it wasn’t a good experience. I didn’t feel like they were being helpful or taking my desire to publish my book seriously plus they wanted to charge me an arm and a leg which would result in a major net loss for me. All of this was happening in January 2021 and I was just so frustrated, I couldn’t find any self-publishing printing company in the Caribbean and it just felt like my book was never going to be published.
I love being an island girl but one of the biggest drawbacks about the Caribbean is how far behind we are when it comes on to certain things. I remember I would be searching on Google day and night hoping I would find a printery that could help; I was unsuccessful and very much annoyed.
There is a US contemporary poet who I follow on Instagram, she is a self-published author so I tried to email her to explain my predicament but I didn’t get any response then one day in her comment section I saw that someone had asked where she prints her books. She didn’t respond but I think 5 persons replied and all of them suggested Lulu.
I DIDN’T WASTE ANY TIME, I GOOGLED LULU IMMEDIATELY!
Finding out about Lulu was a Godsent blessing and I truly thanked him because I was starting to feel discouraged! The process from discovering Lulu to where I’m at now in my self-publishing journey has been easier but still stressing. You can’t just say you are going to self-publish a book then BOOM your book is published! It doesn’t work like that and that’s a hard lesson I had to learn because nobody in the Caribbean was talking about it.
My plan is to talk or should I say write about the different steps to self-publishing, even if you aren’t in the Caribbean I still think you can learn a lot from my blogposts to come about the topic. I will be writing about rough drafts, editing and final draft of a book, self-publishing with Lulu, packaging for my book, the financial aspects (calculating expenses, book cost, selling rate etc) and so much more!
Don’t hold me to it but the next blog should be posted on Thursday or Friday and I’ll be covering the ‘rough draft, editing and final draft’ phase of self-publishing, for an overthinker like myself this was the most emotionally exhausting and my least favourite part.
See you guys on Thursday or Friday, have a good week and stay safe!