Self-Publishing, according to Google Definitions, is defined as a writer having published their work independently and at their own expense. With RedShelf's digital platform, authors and faculty members have the opportunity to self-publish their own pieces of literature. The RedShelf Review decided to interview two authors who decided to self-publish using RedShelf's platform.
A Brief Introduction to the Self-Published Authors:
Steve Zaley, the author of They Are Only Gone If They Are Forgotten, recounts the stories passed down about an original company of paratroopers that were part of the 82nd Airborne Division's 505th Combat Team. This book describes the Third Battalion from its inception in 1942 of 122 men through high time combat forces near the end of World War II.
Bob Hoyt and Ann Yoshihashi, both retired Navy physicians, self-published the title Health Informatics on RedShelf's digital platform. As Hoyt developed an interest in Health Informatics throughout his time in the Navy, he then decided to teach on this topic at the University of West Florida (where he currently serves as the director of the program).
While there are many different motivations for authors to want to pursue self-publishing, Bob Hoyt and wife Ann Yoshihashi, decided to self-publish because they felt there was "nothing current or interesting" in regards to Health Informatics. Because of the dynamic nature of the topic, they chose to pursue self-publishing in order to get it out into the market more quickly.
Steve Zaley, another self-publishing author on RedShelf.com, wrote a story that "needed to be told one last time." When weighing the pros and cons of utilizing of conventional publisher, Zaley decided that self-publishing would give him the most control over the content and the amount of revenue share he would receive.
So now that they knew they wanted to self-publish, the challenge was deciding which self-publishing company to choose from. What were some of the things that helped make their decision? For Zaley, it was the challenge of deciphering complicated and lengthy contracts. One of the most important factors was the ability to have open communication with the self-publishing company. "The most important thing to me was that I could pick up the phone and talk to a real person." commented Zaley.
Hoyt and Yoshihashi had similar requirements when making a decision on the self-publishing company. A few other important factors for them were level of user-friendliness, the ability to be accessible across all modern technology, and a company that would not take a majority of the profit.
When asked about the challenges each self-publisher faced both Hoyt and Zaley had very different hurdles. With so much time spent on writing the book (15 years to be exact), Zaley wanted to work with a company he could trust. He spent a considerable amount of time on putting together a lifetime of stories, photos, and reports and he was adamant about working with someone who he could trust in taking control over a significant amount of this material.
Hoyt and Yoshihashi experienced different challenges, such as formatting nightmares on some platforms. They initially used Microsoft Word, which is typically not ideal for a several hundred page book (it was a bit tasking to format images and tables used to supplement the text). Another challenge they faced was proofreading, because it was time-consuming and difficult at times.
Even though both authors experienced different challenges, they still found that the advantages outweighed any hurdle they had to overcome. Some of the advantages of utilizing RedShelf that stuck out to Zaley were:
- The ability to chat with any one of RedShelf's support team or sales reps at the dial of a button
- The user experience: Zaley's readers have found it to be easy to gain access and begin reading
- Fast introduction into the market: it only took a few hours to upload and it was available for purchase immediately
- The level of assistance: RedShelf helped Zaley connect to print on demand companies as well as other avenues for publishing and promotion
Another important advantage of RedShelf that Hoyt addressed was the ability to offer the eBook for different rental periods (an individual can rent the title for a variety of lengths of time).
So the biggest question you might be facing if you are interested in self-publishing is:
Why Choose Digital to Self-Publish?
A special thanks to Steve Zaley and Bob Hoyt for participating in this blog post and providing us with their time for these interviews!
If you would like to inquire about RedShelf's digital platform or if you would like more information on self-publishing with us, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org!
For more information on Bob Hoyt and Ann Yoshihashi's title, please visit their website here.