The motivation for writing your book should be to give the world a great story and a memorable experience — no matter how you publish or who you're competing with.

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When my first self-published manuscript returned from an editor's desk carved in violent red ink, I learned one huge lesson: a book simply won’t be publishable without professional author services like editing and design.

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You can succeed in today's marketplace as an independent author. There's data to back that up. Of course, statistics and sales reports won't mean a thing if your book has not been professionally edited or if you rushed through the design process.

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The push for more diversity in publishing can sometimes be at odds with the "write what you know" dictum. Writers who want to make their books more diverse want to get it right, which is why authors looking to self-publish might consider engaging sensitivity readers.

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The most important part of being a writer is writing, but if you want a career as a self-published author, you need to do a whole lot more than just write: you have to learn the business and market yourself so you're on the same playing field as mainstream authors with big publishing houses behind them.

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We've created a series of videos to help our authors make the most of BookShop, our free bookselling platform available to all BookBaby authors.

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