Self-publishing can be a daunting journey which is why I decided to blog about my experience. My hope is to save others from heartache, raised blood pressure levels, and hair loss. 🙂
Those who know me, know that I’m a checklist fanatic (the staff where I work will vouch for me too) but let me assure you it’s a good thing. Why reinvent the wheel for something you do regularly? Why miss something because you couldn’t remember what you did the last time? Say it with me, “Templates and Checklists are my friend!” Don’t you feel better? I know I do. 🙂 Okay, let’s get started.What is the difference between a template and a checklist? A template is usually a preformatted document that you fill out for a specific function. A good example is a media/blogger kit. You’ll need one each time you release a new book, but you don’t have to start from scratch if you have a template. You only need to fill in the information about the new book, or update existing information ie. your bio.
A checklist allows you to tick off a list of tasks or things to remember, usually to finish a project. An example of this is a book checklist (that’s what I’m calling mine). This includes items to have inside and outside your book.
Each person’s checklists/templates list is likely be different depending on their needs or what they feel (or don’t feel) comfortable with. Here’s a list of mine for examples.
Media Kit – This template is used template to help create the media kit for all your book releases. Very handy as it can be a daunting task. Also check out your favorite author’s media kit for ideas.
Blogger Kit – I love this template (Thank you Dana Sitar). It makes pitching to bloggers easy and a breeze for bloggers to promote you and your books.
Book Blurb Questionnaire – A list of questions/things to consider when developing your book blurb/description.
Target Audience Questionnaire – Questions to help determine the target audience(s) of your books.
Marketing/Promo Trackers – Help to track and determine the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. I’m certain there’s software/apps that will do all this, but I haven’t found anything I can afford or that meets all my needs.
Book Checklist – Includes what you should have on your cover, back, and inside the book. Helpful if you’re using a formatter or doing the work yourself.
Note: If you format your own books you can create a book template which makes it easy to upload to various sites. I’ve never used this myself, but here’s a link if you’re interested.
Production Schedule – Includes each step needed to get your book to readers. From start (writing) to finished (published). I included marketing stuff in my schedule too since marketing starts before the book is released.
Marketing Checklist – This include everything I plan to do (promotions, public relations, advertising, etc.) organized by countdown to the book release day.