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Three Warning Signs for Self-Publishers: Editor's Notes #164
April 30, 2014
Hello,

Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.
--Philip K. Dick


In this issue:

1. Three warning signs on the road to self-publishing
2. Tickled my funnybone
3. Interesting Web site

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1. Three warning signs on the road to self-publishing
Self-publishing is increasing at such a rapid rate that I can't find data that sits still long enough to check it and publish it as current. When you self-publish, you take on all aspects of the publishing business, and you will find yourself hiring various services. Here are three things to watch out for as you find yourself looking at promotional material from potential partners for you in bringing your book to the public.

FREE
Many businesses offer you something for free, and like everyone else, I like to get something for free when I can. As a business person myself, I also know that no one works for nothing. If a freebie seems really valuable, ask yourself how the seller makes money. If the offer is something I really want, I contact the seller and ask straight-up, "How to do you make money in this relationship?"

DEADLINES THAT MOVE
Some sellers take advantage of software that allows items on their Web page to change with the calendar to make offers that seem always to be about to end. "Buy before May 1 and save 75%." Worried that taking time to think will cost 75% more, unwary readers click to buy. If those same buyers were to wait until the next day, the offer would say, "Buy before May 2 and save 75%."

MARKETING
When a business offers to market your book or ebook, ask exactly what that means. If it is a simple Web site listing, it is not marketing any more than putting something on a shelf in a store is marketing. The bigger the store, the more hidden the item is. The Web is a gigantic "store" and anything not properly marketed will be invisible unless someone with marketing expertise takes a hand in putting it in front of buyers' eyes. Ask any "marketer" for numbers. And not just for their best-selling items, but an average or a low to high range. These are legitimate questions to ask. If someone will not share the information, run.

The best advice is to work with people you have reason to trust, and if you don't know any of those yourself, to work with recommendations from others you know and trust.

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2.Tickled my funnybone
A man addicted to brake fluid says he can stop anytime.

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3. Interesting Web site
You are not strictly alone when evaluating those who want your business. The people behind Predators and Editors post warnings when they know of unscrupulous businesses.
http://pred-ed.com/

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