My Publishing Journey – An Update – So much to do!

The latest version of this post is available here.

I’m about to embark into the unknown world of self-publishing my first book, In The End. Here I document my honest journey so far and the steps I think I’ll need to take. I’ll repost each time I have any major update or when I learn something new or if anyone comments with some useful or important information.

This is the first update after a week of activity on the project. All the updated sections are highlighted in blue.

Expected Publication Date – Autumn / Fall 2018

Step One

Write the book. DONE

Step Two

Build a following. Build a community.IMG_3486

Step Three

Under my own rules of how I wanted this work to develop, they’ll be no development editing of the work. It’s done! Now I need to get the work polished and hunt out those pesky typos, or mistakes as a good friend calls them! It’s the area I’m weakest at so I have to rely on my wife to do it for me and she’s a busy lady so I’m trying to be patient.

I’ve also decided to look through the work again myself and I’m glad I did. Although I’m not breaking my own rule set out above, I am changed more of the words and phrases than I thought I would have too. In the last week I’ve got through about three quarters of the chapters and I’m really enjoying re-reading!

Step Four

Figure out how the hell I’m going to get this published on Amazon. I want to publish as an e-book and also use Amazon’s print-on-demand service. CreateSpace. So I’ve bought the top selling books on the subject from Amazon which the reviews seem to think will guide me through the process! Lots and lots to learn here, so much more information to be added.

It seems that using an Amazon Print on Demand services was the right choice from what I’ve read so far and much easier to format the work this way and then publish for Kindle. Plus it’s free to get your book on the shelves and if you want a copy it only costs the price of the book through the Amazon store. However I’d assumed I’d be using CreateSpace, but during my research I discovered KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing). This is also a service from Amazon and from what I’ve read it seems a newer and improved service, with benefits to those authors outside of the UK. This calls for more research!

I’ve started to read through the books and straight away new tasks are popping out:

  • Decide on the title. Is it right?
  • Same too for the strap line.
  • Come up with Keywords and Categories so people can find it when it’s sitting on the virtual shelves. Amazon is basically a search engine after all.
  • Come up with the blurb. Now that is a daunting task!!
  • Acknowledgements
  • I need to decide if I want to pay hundreds for my own ISBN I can use across all editions or just use the free Amazon one.
  • Figure out what i’m going to put in the back end of the book. Options include:
    • A call to action for Season Two
    • Short Biography
    • A link to my WordPress pages / Facebook
  • Back page cover image. Hadn’t thought of that!

Step Five

Continue to build the community and market the book. Lots to learn here. So far my marketing strategy consists of:

  • Preparing a Amazon product / home page for the book
  • Blogging (as above) – World building and about the process
  • Writing Season Three and releasing on WordPress as I did with Season One and Two.
  • Find a way to get people to provide reviews of the published book
  • Print and send out author copies for review

Other decisions to make:

  • Investigate Goodreads as a promo platform

Step Six

Publish I guess. I’ll take Season One off WordPress and add in my own advertising to link to the book on Amazon. Lots more to learn here.

In parallel with all the above I’ll be doing the same for Season Two and writing Season Three.

Want to read Season One before I take it down? Here it is.

If I’ve made some massive misjudgement, missed out any step or you just have some advice, then please let me know in the comments.


GJ Stevens

I am a Writer. I love to write fast-paced action and adventure thrillers! Subscribe to my mailing list to get FREE books!


  • This is an awesome and refreshing approach. You’re doing some amazing stuff to get the word out about your book… which sounds amazing by the way. I love that genre. The idea of who we will survive in a post apocalyptic world is fascinating.
    I can’t wait to see how it goes. Thanks for being so open about the process of self publishing, a lot of writers (like myself) have been curious but daunted by the process!
    – Bonnie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re welcome. I couldn’t find any other guides on WordPress which went into the detail, so I though I’d just document it as I went along.


  • Hi there. You remind me of me just a year ago when I launched my first book! Anyway just a couple of points. I started doing print editions with .createspace but when KDP started doing it, I changed over. Easier because you get to edit everything from KDP. Secondly, about ISBNs. If you publish on Smashwords, they will give you a free number for each format of your book. You can only use it on Smashwords though, so very much like Amazon.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Great pointers, thank you. I’m leaning towards KDP more and more, so thanks for the advice. I haven’t really looked at any other publishing platform so I’ll add Smashwords to the list!

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s sort of a question of publishing yourself on Barnes and Noble, Ibooks etc, with all the hassle involved in maintaining multiple accounts, or do it through Smashwords who will do it for you. That way it’s just Amazon for ebook and print on demand, and then Smashwords for the ebooks, who then distribute it everywhere else.

        Liked by 1 person

  • Hi there. I saw you read a couple chapters of my book, although not the beginning so you be needing some back story. I thought I’d check you out. I am on the second rewrite. There was so much I learned about writing during the first year and a half I spent writing the first draft. I am also writing a piano soundtrack for it and making a music video for each chapter that can found at YouTube at Sonni Quick Improv Piano. It’s a true story and I’m very much part of the sou\.

    I want to be honest with you. Most people won’t. The first paragraph I had to read several times because your sentence structure in the very first sentence doesn’t make sense. M k kany other sentences have an odd flow. It may backfire if you are trying to reinvent the English languagebecause you are striving for certain type of feel. I would be happy to give you few examples of what I see if you are interested. I am not an editor, but I know good bit and as reader I had trouble reading it.

    Even though I publish individual chapters on blog I don’t consider them engraved stone. I constantly change them if I think I need to rewrite a paragraph or sentence.

    Maybe you are intentionally trying to write train of thought, but there are too many partial sentences along with changing tenses of past to present in the same sentence, or using was instead of were.

    Why did you choose to not want to use a developmental editor? Authors can’t be objective about their stories the way someone with experience can. I can give you a link to a short writing class with a dev editor I’ve worked with twice. She will do a first chapter critique and help you understand your story. Her insight really helped me have strong beginning. If you lose them here you lose them for good. I did like your story concept. I enjoy books set a hypothetical future and the possibility this can happen is not inconceivable. I would need read more to get better idea.

    Personally, I would not use kindle. I will promote it myself as I’m doing and develop my mailing list. When someone pays $10 a month to read all they want I think money making capabilities are reduced. I want to control what price I want to charge. Like you, this is the first full book I’ll be publishing, although I have published in other avenues. Check out website called Book Fuel before you commit to create space. In the blog portion of their publishing co website they do a comparison of different publishing avenues with the good the bad and the ugly.

    God luck to you, even though we know it isn’t luck. It’s hard work!

    Liked by 1 person

  • Hi GJ,

    It sounds like you have your steps down. I am in the same boat so I understand how overwhelming it can be. I think making yourself a checklist and sticking with it us a great idea. Keep sticking with it even whrm it gets tough.



    Liked by 1 person

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