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Let's Make a Book!

Updated: Mar 24

Typewriter with paper in slot that says write something

During past school visits, students and teachers alike have asked me a variety of interesting, funny, and thought-provoking questions. What is my favorite book? How did I find my illustrator? How long did it take me to write Sir Parker? When did I start writing? What do my sons think about the story? While these questions, and many others, are all unique, most boil down to two basic inquiries: how and why did I write my first book? Some people are simply curious about what inspired me to write the story and to take the leap of faith to publish it. Others probably wonder if I'm crazy for opting to print hundreds of copies in advance and store them all at my house. Still others ask questions because they want to learn how they, too, can become a published author. If you're in the first category of answer-seekers, you can learn more about my reasons for writing in my about page here and in my "How It All Started" blog post. If you are the second or third type of inquirer, I'm pleased to tell you that this article is the first in a series of posts in which I will walk you through the process of how I self-published my book! Please note that this series will outline my journey, which is not for everyone! I had to make some difficult choices (such as offset versus on-demand printing, which I will define in Part 10), and I will try to outline the pros and cons of the various options at each step.

Brooke Vitale woman holding two books
Brooke Vitale, author and editor

Before diving into the series outline, I want to provide a huge shout-out to the talented and experienced sensei of self-publishing, Brooke Vitale. She is well-known in the children's book community, and her website is a wealth of knowledge. I have only scratched the surface of the free resources and articles she provides to authors, and I highly recommend her website as an authoritative source for all of the topics I will be discussing in this series. The road map that I followed is a slightly modified version of the one that she provides in this article. To learn more about authorship, editing, and publishing, I encourage you to visit her blog. And now, without further adieu, here is the road map for our how-to-publish adventure!

  1. Let's Make a Book! (you are here)

  2. Let's Think of Something!

  3. Let's Write!

  4. Let's Talk About Publishing!

  5. Let's Talk Layout!

  6. Let's Get an Illustrator!

  7. Let's Get an Editor!

  8. Let's Get Detailed!

  9. Let's Finalize!

  10. Let's Talk Printing!

  11. Let's Market!

  12. Let's Launch!

  13. Let's Celebrate!

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