In Your Corner: Who fills the void left by CreateSpace? Think about Outskirts Press

CreateSpace recently announced plans to soon eliminate positions in its editing, marketing and design divisions. While job cuts are an unsavory step for any company, this move is likely intended to streamline operations and shore up financials.

But what will this mean for self-publishing authors? CreateSpace will continue to print books and authors will still be able to upload and sell their books, but with these cuts there will no longer be the option to purchase copyediting, book formatting, book cover design, marketing or any other professional creative services for authors publishing via CreateSpace. Suddenly, CreateSpace authors will need to navigate the process alone or seek out other self-publishing service providers for help.

Here’s where a self-publishing company–like the one I work for, Outskirts Press–comes in.

Based on company-wide conversations already taking place, I’m confident that Outskirts Press will work diligently to accommodate all writers negatively affected by the service cuts at CreateSpace. We’re proud to have been named the #1 self-publisher by Top Consumer Reviews multiple years in a row and will continue the tradition of excellence for all CreateSpace authors who require more than just an upload. In addition to our printing and ebook publishing services, we provide independent authors with all the same services discontinued by CreateSpace, and then some. Our services include:

  • Professional writing and editing services: Our service to independent authors starts long before publication! Whether you need help starting or finishing the manuscript, or require just the final read-through, we can match you up with a talented professional ghostwriter or editor to help you achieve a professional book.
  • Professional book formatting: A wide selection of the most popular book formats and interior formatting options.
  • Custom cover design: Our talented book cover designers will ensure that you get a cover that sells.
  • Book marketing: A broad menu of marketing options to promote your book your way today.
  • All-inclusive packages: Comprehensive publishing packages that include everything you need to polish, format, publish and market your book successfully.
  • Affordable and flexible: With us, you can start the self-publishing journey for only $35 down!

Are you, or is an author you know, left stranded by the void left by CreateSpace’s cuts? You can find out more about how my coworkers at Outskirts Press can professionally publish your book, distribute it globally (yes, even on Amazon) and support you with affordable options at the same time by visiting our website at www.OutskirtsPress.com.

You know, it’s not every day I am compelled to write a “hard sell,” but when it comes to recent events, I feel the need to be honest: what CreateSpace has done will leave many authors feeling abandoned mid-project, or worse, unaided from start to finish. Self-publishing has (and will) continue to thrive and evolve to provide better services due to the diversification of options available to you, the self-publishing author; watching any company in our industry go through the layoff process is not, in the end, a cheerful experience. We feel for those who now find themselves looking for work, and hope that they, as well as you, find that next good thing speedily.

You can read more about the layoffs here.

You are not alone. ♣︎


Elizabeth

ABOUT ELIZABETH JAVOR: With over 20 years of experience in sales and management, Elizabeth Javor works as the Director of Sales and Marketing for Outskirts Press. The Sales and Marketing departments are composed of knowledgeable publishing consultants, customer service reps and book marketing specialists; together, they all focus on educating authors on the self-publishing process to help them publish the book of their dreams. Whether you are a professional looking to take your career to the next level with platform-driven non-fiction or a novelist seeking fame, fortune, and/or personal fulfillment, Elizabeth Javor can put you on the right path.

Self-Publishing News: 2.19.2018 – New Releases!

February concept. stationery and notebook, business background

And now for the news!

presidents' day

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically new releases written by self-publishing authors and published by independent presses! Today we’ll be featuring brand-new releases in the Outskirts Press Bookstore!

Our first book for the day is Crystal H. Vo’s fantastic new memoir, Finding My Voice: A Journey of Hope. Vo, who had her start as a refugee from Vietnam, made her way to the United States by way of Indonesia while still a teenager. Her childhood was about as traumatic as you can imagine, and she spent years coming to terms with the various sources for the depression which (understandably) resulted. This memoir is a powerful, compelling look at what it means to fight with mental disorders like depression as well as a complicated backstory. A transplant to this country, Vo overcame many struggles to acquire her GED as well as her Associate’s and Bachelor’s degrees, all while acclimating to a new country and raising two children as a single mother. If you like poetry (this book includes several) as well as stories of loss and triumph, Finding My Voice: A Journey of Hope may just be the book to launch you into Spring!

 

Every now and then, there comes along a picture book for kids which has all of the right components: beautiful art, the perfect ratio of text-to-image for young readers, a story that catches the child’s mind, and a package which will entice parents and grandparents to invest in pulling out their wallets. The Ten Brave Squirrels of Bryson City is one of those books, and Rory Smith has given us an absolute gem of a picture book which will appeal to readers of all ages! The story follows the adventures of a group of squirrels living outside of Bryson City (North Carolina), in the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. These squirrels live a safe playful life … or they did, up until their food supply is put at risk by forces outside of their control. The squirrels are tasked with figuring out how to protect their acorns and stave off disaster, making for a spectacular adventure narrative as well as nurturing an interest in our National Parks system and the preservation of these special places.

Sometimes, we really need to hear the voices of those who’ve gone before, who’ve shattered glass ceilings and pushed past all obstacles to carve out successful narratives on their own terms–and that’s what the authors of The Black Pearls Club: A Woman’s Guide to Success in the Workplace have provided us here, with this book chronicling the high points and highlights of their careers as well as advice for readers looking to make their own way. These authors know their stuff, and they’ve seen it all: this book tackles heavy-hitting subjects, including common issues like sexism, racism, and ageism which often shape and limit women’s abilities to reach positions for which they are fully qualified. But this book is more than just an impassioned look at societal evils … it’s also a powerful encouragement, full of positivity and action points for the up-and-coming female worker. We can’t recommend taking a tour of the women’s workplace with these fantastic women authors by your side! Men, that goes for you, too: there’s a lot to learn on how you can be part of the solution and a support to the women in your lives.


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 2.12.2018 – The Interviews!

February concept. stationery and notebook, business background

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically interviews with or articles written by self-publishing authors and experts!

Self-publishing doesn’t often rate a mention in the Business News Daily, but this week, something extraordinary happened–or should we say someone extraordinary? Meet Payal Kindiger, CEO of Storymakery, a new startup which is changing the way storytelling to children is done. Says Kindiger, “I have always loved creative writing. I was shy during early childhood, so writing became a natural form of expression and way of standing out as a student.” She found ways to preserve and cultivate that love throughout her professional career, even as she jumped from a career in IT management consulting to an IT Services/Software business she co-founded and ran with other partners. While raising her own daughter, Kindiger realized something important was lacking when it came to storytelling services for kids: “This made me think – While there were so many different digital storytelling sites, there wasn’t a platform, or experience, available for kids to self-publish.” How to solve the problem? Become an entrepreneur and invent her own solution! Storymakery came into being with the goal of “elevat[ing] the experience of reading and writing through [an] in-store experience where kids work with staff to create their own stories and illustrations from start to finish,” says Kindiger. And the model seems to be a success! But more importantly, Kindiger’s vision for self-publishing–that there’s room for kids to publish, too–may lead to an even kinder, even more inclusive, model for us all.

John Gray knows the taste of rejection, but he hasn’t let it stop him from doing great things! A regular contributor to the Saratogian in the form of a weekly column, Gray wrote this last week about his personal experience in self-publishing a children’s book designed to help children cope with the loss of a pet. The book, titled God Needed a Puppy, was submitted to and rejected by a number of traditional publishers before Gray settled on a self-publishing company which allowed him to publish his book his way. In a lucky twist of fate, Gray, who had moderated his expectations for book sales accordingly, learned that starting small won’t hold a good book back–and his picture book has gone on to sell more than 10,000 copies. For a sense of scale, 10,000 preorders is enough to land a book on the New York Times bestseller lists. The bigger traditional publishing houses have made an art and a science out of landing their books on these lists (it’s great promotion), but Gray managed to make his sales without preorders and without the benefit of a full-time marketing staff. The rest of his story is equally inspirational! We highly recommend you check out his full opinion piece at the link.

The future of self-publishing is here, and it looks a lot like the dreams we had as teenagers–dreams which self-publishing, with all of its advances, can now make possible. Writes Samantha of the Vindicator, high school students in Struthers, Ohio: “Three students in particular share a love of writing, faith in God and an appreciation for the role models who helped guide them.” They’re doing this on their own terms, and with the full support (and inspiration!) of their families. Fore more on their individual books, we recommend you check out the full article online at the Vindicator.


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 2.5.2018 – The Company Files!

february

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically news from or regarding self-publishing companies!

The title might be straightforward, but as Forbes contributor Adam Rowe wrote this week, the recent history of self-publishing is anything but, unless you’re looking at sales numbers … and if you are, those numbers tell a very simple story, one of rapid exponential growth in both production and publication as well as readership and market share. As Rowe puts it in the opening to his article, “In September 2014, there were “perhaps two million” titles in the Kindle Store, according to digital publishing expert David Gaughran. Today there are seven million.” Rowe interviewed Gaughran for his article, unspooling his origins in the self-publishing industry as well as his thoughts on where things have gone (and how they’ve gotten here). Says Gaughran, “It’s not just that the market has swelled; the tools we have for reaching readers have evolved at an incredible rate. It’s harder today, in some ways, and easier in others. But definitely more complex overall.” Complex is our forté! We highly recommend you check out the full article on the Forbes website.

Looking to take the next step in self-publishing your book this February by branching out in your marketing? The best deal around seems to be this one from Outskirts Press, which offers 15% off their Global Book Tour service package. For those unfamiliar with book tours, we can’t recommend them enough (no matter whom you choose to incorporate into your team) here on Self-Publishing Advisor. Interested in knowing more about book tours in general, and what they can do for your book? Check out Elizabeth’s brilliant blog post on the subject, and check out the Outskirts Press website for more information on their February deal.

Remember Medium? It’s been going through a lot of changes lately (some of which we’ve documented on our blog in various news posts), some of them significant. This one seems to be less dramatic than the usual, just a change in chief editor (as if that weren’t still an incredibly significant change!). But Siobhan O’Connor comes with an experience portfolio to rival the best, with experience at Time Inc. and a number of other important traditional print institutions, and many think she has a real chance of making the company finally turn a profit. Medium, a Twitter platform dedicated to longform self-published articles, has struggled to find a financial model which might do so. We’ll be watching closely!


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 1.29.2017 – January Round-Up

January, illustrated name of calendar month, illustration

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, wrapping up what’s new for you and yours in January 2018.

We’ll start off today with the announcement of a new kid on the block; every month it seems as though the self-publishing industry adds another heavyweight to the list of available options, and January was no different as America’s last big brick-and-mortar bookstore chain launched a self-publishing platform. This move, announced in a sweep of press releases, is seen by many in the industry as an attempt for the chain, which has suffered slow attrition in sales and the rapid exit of its e-reader (the Nook) in recent years, to rival the incredible popularity of Amazon’s Createspace and KDP services. What many may forget is that B&N already had a self-publishing platform, only it was tied to the Nook. The “new” Barnes & Noble Press™ is an update of that existing platform, untethered from its Nook associations. For more details, check out the press release.

Speaking of Amazon, more big news this month as Forbes took on the controversy surrounding the distribution giant’s ongoing treatment of self-publishing authors, which hasn’t always been easy to parse. This article by contributor Adam Rowe tackles what exactly happened during a brief interlude when many self-publishing authors found a 50% royalty option displayed on their author dashboard, an option which was both unselectable and surprising (the company typically provides 35% and 70% options, contingent upon book price). Writes Rowe, authors “and other industry  watchdogs are now speculating that an upcoming change may offer the 70% only to KDP-exclusive authors while giving authors who chose to also sell their ebooks in other markets the 50% rate for non-exclusive ebooks.” Not everyone has adopted that angle, but many, it would seem, are braced for bad news. Rowe concludes his article with a brief but interesting paragraph framing the current debate within equally current statistics; you can read the full article on the Forbes website.

Here’s an interesting piece from Jeff vonKaenel of the Sacramento News Review, on the nature of journalistic freedom by way of a review of the new Spielberg film, The Post. Sound a bit out of our wheelhouse? We thought so too, until we stumbled across the later paragraphs, all of which unspool why traditional print journalism has struggled to find a funding model that will continue to work in the age of Google Adwords and … you guessed it! … self-publishing. Yes, this editorial is somewhat of a rallying cry for well-vetted information in news media. Yes, it was written by someone with a fairly large stake in the newspaper’s success. And yes, it gives an unsubtle push for more people to invest in print journalism (specifically the News Review). It’s not, for lack of a better term, a self-disinterested piece. But it is thought provoking. Self-publishing has contributed to change not just within the world of books, but also the world of news. The world of magazines. The world of music. The world of comics. The world of gaming. The old models simply don’t work anymore. So what’s next, vonKaenel encourages us to ask? I think that’s up to us, the ones who have figured out another viable way.


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 1.22.2018 – Publishing Trends Roundup

January, illustrated name of calendar month, illustration

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically regarding publishing trends within the publishing industry, and their implications for all authors!

If there was an article title I thought least likely to ever appear in print or the digital sphere, it was this one: gig economy workers looking to romance writers (including, specifically, self-published authors!) for tips on how to get ahead in the digital age. This fascinating article comes to us from the Associated Press by way of Washington’s Top News (WTOP) and was written by Chris Larson of the University of Colorado and released through The Conversation (“an independent and nonprofit source of news, analysis and commentary from academic experts,” according to the article). In short, this has top of the line credentials, and speaks to a felt need in the self-publishing community: to be recognized not just by and within the publishing industry for the many successes and strengths of self-publishing, but also to be recognized by those outside of it–by other professionals in other fields, as a peer among peers. With a caveat to E.L. James (authors of the immensely popular Fifty Shades series), Larson writes that his research indicates that “the median income for romance authors has tripled in the e-book era. And more and more are earning a six-figure income.” This is great news, especially if the reasons why can be extrapolated and translated to other fields. Larson has some thoughts on that, too, and we highly recommend you read the full article at the link!

In another article with shockingly good credentials and authority, New York Times regular contributor Alexandra Alter describes in an interview just how e-books and the digital revolution, self-publishing included, have affected her job. Alter, for context, “covers the book industry” (according to the article) for the Times, and is a regular contributor to their very popular podcast, “The Book Review.” In other words, she’s one of the best-placed individuals to comment upon significant and ongoing trends in publishing at large. Here, Alter writes of how she came to e-books with the birth of her eldest daughter, a familiar tune to many e-book aficionados, all of whom need their hands free for various parenting duties. And despite being deeply vested in traditional publishing and print media, Alter sees value in the self-publishing industry: “Self-publishing has been one of the most fascinating corners of the industry to me,” she writes. “There have been a handful of massively successful self-published authors who have started their own publishing companies, and they’ve started to publish other ‘self-published’ authors. But publishers have survived so far through consolidation, and we’ll probably see more of that.” There’s lots to unpack throughout this article, and we highly recommend you take a look at the original on the Times website!

In one of the more useful trends to arise in the self-publishing industry, companies are now beginning to see the value in providing aspiring authors with tools for taking charge of and organizing their own publication and marketing needs. The latest release comes from Outskirts Press, a self-publishing company with which we are familiar. This month, it released its 2018 book marketing calendar, which comes complete with “valuable book competition deadlines, marketing tips and other up-to-date information they need to successfully promote all year.” If this sounds like the sort of thing which might prove helpful to you (and we’ll be the first to admit that we love bullet journals and budget and daily planners!) we recommend you take a look at the full article on Benzinga.


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 1.15.2018 – New Releases!

January, illustrated name of calendar month, illustration

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically new releases written by self-publishing authors and published by independent presses! Today we’ll be featuring brand-new **nonfiction** releases in the Outskirts Press Bookstore!

Are you looking to self-publish a book? This latest book from the founder of self-publishing company Outskirts Press, Brent Sampson, identifies the most common questions related to self-publishing today and then provides clear and concise answers in a visually appealing format. You might be wondering, for example, what makes “independent” self-publishing unique from “free” self-publishing and “full-service” self-publishing … and Sampson has the answers! The book delves into 25 such questions, each of which elegantly encapsulates the ethic and philosophy of self-publishing. With a decade and a half of experience running a self-publishing company as well as self-publishing and marketing his own books, Sampson is an important voice in the world of indie, hybrid, and self-publishing literature, and if his previous books are any indication, this one will be an excellent addition to any prospective author’s bookshelf!

Are you a fan of works of creative nonfiction and autobiography such as Helen Macdonald’s H is for Hawk or Patricia Hampl’s A Romantic Education? Arvin F. Spell III’s narrative of a life during the timber and turpentine days of southern Georgia—stories from the turn of the 19th Century and into the early 20th Century—embodies everything we love about the genre as it weaves tales of sentiment, humor, drama, and sometimes even horror into a tapestry of personal insight. Spell grew up listening to these same stories as told by his father, whose family has its roots deep in the rich Georgia soil and the timber industry of the time, and now he’s here to share them with readers who love the atmosphere and mystery to be found in the half-light falling through virgin timber.

Once upon a time … okay, no. Let’s face it: these days, even in ultra-modern 2018, there’s a stigma attached to the career field of education. Commonly expressed sentiments include: “Anyone can teach, so why do you need a four-year degree?” and “The education system is so messed up, but if educators only did [x], everything would be better.” This is just a sampling; anyone who’s ever acquired a degree in the arts or humanities will sympathize. But the fact of the matter is that these sentiments are being expressed by people who have no (or very little) experience in the field, and as with any career or field or industry, the true inhabited experience can only be fairly represented by those who have lived and worked within it. That is why Doug Green’s new book, Teaching Isn’t Rocket Science, It’s Way More Complex is such a refreshing read. It’s packed full of insights garnered from a lifetime in education; Green has been an educator since 1970, teaching physics, chemistry, and computer science, as well as working as an administrator at various levels. With teaching experience at SUNY Cortland and Binghamton University and over 400 articles in peer-reviewed journals to his name, Green knows his stuff.


spa-news

As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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