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8

Smart Self-Publishing

An Author’s Guide to Producing a Marketable Book

discounts (40 or 50 percent to stores, and or

more if dealing with on-line resellers or

wholesalers or distributors). And your book

must be promoted and sold. You can’t sit

back and wait. A snowball stops growing if

you stop pushing.

Consider the success of

The Christmas

Box

by Richard Paul Evans. According to an

article by Lawrence Van Gelder in the

New

York Times,

Evans wrote the story for his

family and had twenty copies printed by a

local printer. By February the following year,

people were asking for it in bookstores. He

then sent the book to regional publishers,

where it was rejected. Finally he decided to

publish the story himself. As readers bought

more and more copies, Evans eventually

sold to Simon & Schuster, and by Decem-

ber, the book was in the No. 2 position on

the

Times

’ best-seller list and sales ap-

proached 400,000 copies. Of course, not

every self-published book will have such a

fortunate public reception and national suc-

cess. Evans obviously had a Christmas story

that appealed to readers—and he was will-

ing to invest in his product.