Self publishing.

Howdy Folks,


Good to see here so early in the week, hope you were all nice to your Pa’s and Granpa’s over the weekend?

I received a question over at Linkedin and decided to post a slightly redacted version here in the blog as it might be of interest for some of you?

On 06/17/13 3:22 AM, MISS X wrote:
Help Granpa Guff,

I’m new to ebooks, I know as much as will fit into 40 tuna cans…which is a lot. In mid jan, it was what fitted on a dime.

Is it hard to format them.? what kind of things do you have to do to the manuscript to format it? 
Who printed your paper books? Have you been advertising/marketing them? Are yr paper books in bookstores? 
Is Amazon helpful? I’m trying to figure out where to get my isbn’s from. if I go with Createspace, to use Bowkers isbn’s I have to start up my own self publishing co.which I don’t want to do. but I also don’t want CS as the publisher….eeekkkk.


MIss X.

Howdy young lady,

In the immortal words of Douglas Addams “don’t panic”.

I can only tell you what has worked for me, there will be other opinions and surely you will explore them but lets get down to it.

I wrote across two computers (one died, almost died too of a heart attack at the thought of losing everything) and a phone for notes, the muse can be fleeting.

Put it all into word and tried to get the chapters and table of contents right, spell checked a zillion times and still missed stuff.

Finally chose an editor who promised the earth and delivered nothing, NOTHING! May she roast in the bottom of the bargain bins for all of eternity.

Plucked up some courage and spoke with Paul at

Who promptly turned my word docs into epub, mobi and pdf.

Then uploaded to smashwords and amazon.

Then I spent a long time praying to every god in existence whilst writing emails to every newspaper, blogger and critic that i could find on the internet begging them to review my little book.

Having spent years emailing agents and publishing houses to no avail and very little courtesy, the online world has been very kind and to be honest I feel terribly humbled.

It seems that the more I learn the less I know, I am reminded of G RR Martins Ygritte who constantly admonishes Jon Snow “You know nothing..Jon Snow”

Paper books from Createspace, its a bit fiddly but if you get a pdf done properly it should be easy, do not forget the cover, spend some time on getting a good one, people always judge a book by its cover.

Not bothered by ISBN’s, probably should be but they seems like archaic money spinners from the past, only publishers seems to be able to purchase them in bulk to achieve a reasonable cost per book number.

Amazing that QR codes have not replaced them at this stage of the 21st century?

Go for it girl, better your book than another zelebrity ghost written pile of tosh written for a huge advance or the confessions of some sordid politician wishing to distance himself from even more sordid rumours.

Catch the children early with imaginative stories and great vocab and we’ll help create inquisitive thinking readers for life.

Unless Simon Cowell teams up with amazon.

Publish and be damned and then publish again.

G Guff


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