Beth Revis, author of the bestselling YA sci-fi trilogy Across the Universe (Penguin), recently self-published a companion volume titled The Body Electric. Publishers Weekly called the book “addictive,” adding that “Revis gives a masterly blend of worlds familiar and new.” While Revis is happy with her publisher and has no intentions of abandoning Penguin, she felt that in terms of self-publishing, The Body Electric was “the right book at the right time.” She says the book was finished and ready to go, but “didn’t fit in with Penguin’s next catalog.” And since it was loosely connected to the Across the Universe series “it only made sense to get it out to my fans as quickly as possible before moving on to new books and new worlds.”
Revis had been following the self-publishing trend for a while, so when it came time for her to jump in herself, she already had a stockpile of information. However, Revis admits there were a few snags in the editorial process and thinks that if she had educated herself a little more, she would have been able to handle the book’s interior design. In the end, Revis was surprised and encouraged by how much she enjoyed self-publishing her book—particularly having total control over the product from cover to design to marketing.
We asked Revis to share some self-publishing tips for aspiring indie authors.
Every Way Is Different
“Keep in mind that there is no one right way to publish. Everyone has a different idea and different advice, but your path is your path alone. Really, you can spend nothing or thousands on self-publishing, and finding what’s right for you is the key—there’s no one set dollar amount that equals a good book.”
Everyone Is Different
“Along those same lines, keep in mind that some people have very different goals. Some want a career; some want to publish one book for fun. Your publishing path should line up with your goals, not someone else’s.”
But You’re Not Alone
“You’re not alone. Find other people who have similar genres as you, similar paths, similar attitudes. Form critique groups and marketing groups and—more importantly—friend groups. Be a part of the community. Additionally, the self-publishing community is just very open. Reddit and the KBoards have provided a wealth of information and up-to-the-minute answers to any of my questions.