Sunday, June 23, 2013

A Publication Checklist for Indie Authors (with a Covert Craving Blurb)

Jennifer James is a published author who recently decided to try self-publishing.  When I talked to her last spring, we had the idea of her chronicling her experience and writing a blog about it.  So fast forward three months later, and Jennifer has returned to Inner Goddess to tell us about self-publishing.  (you can read her first blog with us here)

by Jennifer James

So as I’m heading into my second Indie publication, I’ve run into some snags. While it kinda sucks that I’m now doing work I didn’t anticipate, and had to push back my expected release day, I happen to appreciate snags. Because snags are good teaching moments (after you’ve gotten over the “Oh crap, I’m losing my mind, why is this happening?” part). In light of that, I decided to create a checklist for myself that is actually written down and not just floating around in the crazy disaster of my brain.

So, this is my “Before you hit publish or announce anything, and then some” List.

1)      Book has been thoroughly critted. Hire an editor and proofreader. Get an estimated timeline of how long that process will take.

2)      Contact some cover artists and see who you gel with. (And who you can afford!) I happen to really like Leah Kaye Suttle, Fiona Jayde, and Mina Carter.

3)      Once you have a rough idea of when the editing will be done, start looking to book a blog tour with an estimated release date. Many of the big blogs fill up months in advance, especially if you’re looking for reviews. (I used Google forms for my last tour sign up, and that was so awesome. The spreadsheet output is a lifesaver. Stick an option for ARC review copies on your sign up form too!)

4)      Book is back? Get it formatted and start sending out ARCs. Set a firm pub date. This is also a good time to be making picture promo graphics and ask your followers to like and share them for some easy viral marketing. You can even put on the graphic “Coming to an e-reader near you on blahblahblah.”

5)      Set up a FB party. Maybe do a small cover reveal, blurb, and excerpt stop tour with a swag prize. Include a link to your FB party in the post.

6)      Release and tour. Experience wild success! Book your travel to other countries and dream destinations. (I wish. LOL)

There’s probably more that I’m missing from this list (Please, comment below and tell me so I can add it and save myself headaches!). But being prepared ahead of time will make the sometimes overwhelming world of Indie publishing a lot easier to handle. I love being able to have full control of my books….but that means FULL control. I’m responsible for everything right down to making sure that I set a good release date. With Covert Craving, everything was set…until a final read through by the proofer convinced me the book just wasn’t ready.

So here I am, pushing everything back. I’m convinced it’s the right thing to do, but I’ve been in a mad scramble since then. The most important step in this whole thing is probably number one. My book was edited and everything…and then I sent it for a proofread and she told me she loved the book, but what the f*ck was I doing leaving it with such an abrupt ending?

Success of a book is usually measured in years, the breakout bestseller that goes to the top of the charts in a week or two is very rare. Taking the time to be sure a book is one hundred percent ready to go, taking the time to really launch it well can be the difference between ecstatic readers and really irritated ones. As an Indie author, you’re responsible for every detail. So take your time, go step by step, and for the love of cheese puffs, don’t rush! (Or you’ll be like me, tearing your hair out and not sleeping.) 

Thank you, Jennifer, for such useful information!!!  It's great to see you were able to keep your sense of humor while pulling your hair out.  :)  And now it's time to see the fruit of your labour....

Covert Craving Blurb 

 She just stripped in front of an NYPD detective...

The glow-in-the-dark water at Camp Sunny Woods left Chloe Sanders with the ability to disappear from sight.

Thirteen years later, she uses her “gift” to take out criminals when she can. If she’s got to be part of a freak show, she’s going to do some good while in the buff.

And he’s enjoying studying every luscious curve…

Color blind detective Jacob Greiff smokes to weaken the overwhelming messages his nose sends him. One summer camp trip was enough for him. His priority right now is busting the vigilante leaving burglars tied up with panty hose and women’s scarves.

He thinks he’s hallucinating when he sees a petite, bare foot brunette in an enormous trench coat at his crime scenes because for the first time in years, he’s seeing someone in full color.

He’s not sure he’s buying it, but Chloe sure looks great when she’s “invisible.”

Despite his own supernatural abilities and the raging lust between them, Greiff wonders if Chloe isn’t some kind of nut who gets off on public nudity. She insists she can disappear from view when naked, that he’s the only one who can see her when she’s in the buff.

Their shared past comes to a treacherous intersection when a man shows up at Chloe’s apartment and informs them at gun point it’s time to report for duty—or else.

Covert Craving Giveaway

 To win an ecopy of Covert Craving by Jennifer James, tell us what superpower you would like to have.  A name from the comments will be chosen by  You must leave contact info so we can tell you that you won.  Contest ends Sat. June 29 at midnight Central Standard Time. 


  1. Thanks for hosting me Pearls! :)

  2. Covert craving is awesome! I can tell even before reading it, because Jennifer James wrote it. She's that good!

    1. ROFLMAO. Thank you Kirsten. :) (You need pompoms.)

  3. If I win, please send ebook to

  4. HMM Super power.... The ability to bend time. Theres just not enough time in the day anymore.

    I love Jennifer James and great advice!

  5. My super power would be I want to be able to see what is going to happen in the future.. Hi Jennifer James!

    1. Hallo!

      Erm....not me. It's scary there. in futureville

  6. I would love to have the ability to travel through time.

  7. sounds like a great read. My super power i would choose hmm would be a toss up between shapechanging or healing but leaning more towards healing that way i can heal any injury.


    1. That's a great one. Think of the possibilities! no wrinkles. No arthritis! No ouchies, ever!

  8. Jennifer thanks for the follow up! I would add to your list, develop a street team (a group of super fans that will promote like hell to get your book out there). They can be your feet on the ground, handing out lit, talking to bookstores and generally annoying everyone they know until all those people read your book.

    As for superpower, I would love superfast reading as I am so far behind on my reading list! Too many books, not enough time...

    1. Yes! I just got mine. (ST) They're the Unbuttoned Babes and they are AMAZING!

      I love them. Like cuddly bunnies. I can't believe I left that out.

      I'll have to do a post about my author life Before my ST and After my ST.

  9. HMMM.. Think I like the idea of being invisible :-)

    1. Yeah? It's fun...until you meet the person who can see you... :)(Then it's even more fun)

  10. Congratulations Jessica Hale!!! You won Covert Cravings!