Thursday, April 5, 2012

The best advice Aaron Shepard ever gave me

Aaron Shepard is a busy guy. He’s the publisher of books by his wife and himself, and an award-winning author of children’s books. He’s been an actor. He supports readers’ theater, makes flutes and plays them, and is an authority on self-publishing.

For several years, Aaron’s Aiming at Amazon was the major guidebook for self-publishing authors who hoped to sell their books on

This was one of the first books I bought when I decided to self-publish in 2008. I learned a lot from "Aiming" and from Aaron’s Perfect Pages, which explains how to produce a book using Microsoft Word. His POD for Profit updates "Aiming." Aaron is a frequent contributor to the Yahoo print on demand publishers group, where many people depend on his advice.

I've learned a lot from Aaron. I’m particularly grateful for this advice: “Set the book aside for a month or two.”

Last year I wrote and published eight books. That's much too high a number for a one-person publishing company -- especially when the boss has another business, with employees, to watch over. I learned that it takes much more time and effort to promote a book than to write it. This year I've cut way back.

The 100 Worst Self-Publishing Misteaks: How amateurs can publish books like professionals -- or even better was supposed to be published in July of 2011.  

Co-author Sheila Clark and I stopped working on it last August. We restarted yesterday.

I've learned a lot during my eight-month semi-sabbatical, and the book will be better because of the pause. Thank you, Aaron.


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