Self-Publishing News: 7.21.2020

21 July on wooden blocks with a white daisy on a red background

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

In their recent press release, the industry data analyst Technavio has published some insights on the trends that they observed in the global publishing industry throughout the first half of 2020 and some they expect to continue to develop through the end of the year–and then onward through 2024. The release opens with the statement that “Although the COVID-19 pandemic continues to transform the growth of various industries, the immediate impact of the outbreak is varied. While a few industries will register a drop in demand, numerous others will continue to remain unscathed and show promising growth opportunities.” That tantalizing statement is a preface for (paid) access to their full report, although the do offer a free sample report that is definitely worth seeing. (Infographics really are our friends!) From what we can gather, print sales are lagging across many genres and ebooks are again rising in popularity to offset that, likely as a result of bookstores struggling to put print books into peoples’ hands by way of bookshop browsing. Consider this your annual reminder to seek out new ways to partner with your local bookstores–and to diversify the ways and means that readers can lay their hands on your books!

In an article for Entrepreneur that was picked up later by The Hour and other online platforms, Lucas Miller of Echelon Copy LLC shared six common errors that self-publishing authors frequently make when breaking into the business. We won’t spoil the whole article for you, as it is truly worth a read on its own merits, but we were particularly struck by how no. 5 (“Forgetting print and digital formatting”) reinforces what we just noted above in our review of Technavio’s report: if you want your self-published book to thrive during the era of social distancing, making sure you have multiple avenues–Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and indie bookstores, and so forth––to purchase your books is important, and so too is making sure that you have a range of formats–ebook, print, print-on-demand, audiobook, and so forth–available to suit the needs of your readers. 

Our last news that we’re going to feature this week is specifically relevant to those indie authors based out of the US who use the program Substack for their newsletters, and since Substack continues to grow in popularity, we thought it worth a mention here. Brian Heater of TechCrunch covers Substack’s latest move, launching Defender to assist in (lacking a more specific term) defending the legal rights of indie authors. As Heater puts it,

In the worlds of journalism and publishing, it’s fairly common for the wealthy to attempt to shut down reporting with legal threats. For those publishing on large platforms with plenty of resources, such challenges can be a massive headache. For independent writers and publishers, on the other hand, the consequences can be far more dire.

If you use Substack, take a look at Heater’s full article. Hopefully other newsletter platforms will follow suit!


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 each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

Bottom Line for Self-Published Authors

Many of my marketing suggestions center on one tactic: establishing yourself as an expert in your field. It doesn’t matter if you write fiction or non-fiction, as a self-published author you must demonstrate expertise in what you write about. The way you demonstrate expertise is by being quoted and by helping people with your knowledge.

How do you help people? By publishing helpful tips for free. You have already published a book, now it’s time to submit tips from that book to Bottom Line, which is a 2-million+ circulation newsletter that publishes tips by experts just like you. In order to validate the expertise of their experts, they include bylines which include the fact that their experts are published authors.

That’s you!

Bottom Line has a variety of newsletters in a variety of genres, so select the one most applicable to your book and contact that editor directly from their website at

Personal editor: Karen Larson
Health & Natural Healing editor: Rebecca Shannonhouse
Retirement and Tax Hotline editor: David Ellis
Daily Health News & Weekly Secrets editor: Sarah Hiner

It also doesn’t hurt to send the editor a copy of your book, with specific pages of tips indicated. Here is the Bottom Line address, phone, and fax line:

Boardroom, Inc.,
281 Tresser Blvd.
8th Floor,
Stamford, CT 06901-3229

Phone: 203-973-5900
Fax: 203-967-3086

Good luck and have fun!
Kelly Schuknecht

Even More Writing on the Road to Self-Publishing

Nothing necessitates production like demand. Whether that demand is real or imaginary is irrelevant when it comes to motivation. Of course, “real” demand is certainly better in terms of promotion and readership. But “imaginary” demand also accomplishes the same goal – incentive for you to write a certain amount within a certain period of time.

We’ve discussed writing to publish (in some form) everyday, and great resources like Yahoo Groups and Google User Groups to help accomplish that. It doesn’t matter what; just the act of writing is inspiring and moving in the direction of book publication. Perhaps you even subscribed to a group or two, or at least reviewed a few to become comfortable with the new medium.

There are also a couple of additional options for writing online. These options accomplish the goal of writing publicly but add the additional incentive of “demand.” Both also create great marketing tools for promoting books, especially for those self-publishing authors when on sales in the ever growing online marketplace.

The first option is a “blog.” If you’re reading this chances are good that you’re blog experience is already there. Do you have a blog of your own?

Short for web-log, blogs are online diaries that allow you to post content quickly and conveniently for the world to see. Each blog posting is time-stamped with the date and time of your entry. Other readers can post comments to your blog if you allow them to. And you are open to comment on other interesting or related blogs.

Blogs that are updated consistently and frequently are more popular than those that languish. There’s your demand. If you want a blog with “buzz” you will find yourself motivated to add to it every day. Even if you’re only adding a paragraph with every posting – those entries add up.  Keeping ahead of your public’s expectations is a great motivator to write.

The second option is an online newsletter, or e-newsletter. If you vow to distribute an e-mail newsletter on a consistent basis (let’s say once a week), you’ll be motivated to contribute new content to each newsletter before distributing it.


i hope that helps. Have fun and keep writing!


Karl Schroeder