How I Decided to Publish My Next Book

I invited you along for the journey as I work on my next book, so here is an update. When I began I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go the self-publishing or traditional publishing route. I finally decided. I will share with you what I decided, a couple of reasons and where I am in the process.

Why I chose traditional publishing

Westbow Press published Adopting the Father’s Heart. Many call this way of publishing assisted publishing. We used my money; I made the final decisions on design, editing, when to release the book, etc. Westbow provided their services I purchased.

I like the outcome, and Westbow continues to offer support and guidance.

With this book about toxic shame I am looking for some things that I don’t think self or assisted publishing provides.

  1. A focused team – I hope to work with a team that will lend expertise and will help make decisions based on that expertise.
  2. Wider exposure – even though I can achieve more exposure, and continue to work on it, with my first book, I want to see how a traditional publisher accomplishes this when they have made an upfront investment in a book.

Where I am in the process

Once I made this decision, I needed to gain more knowledge about the process. I turned to Michael Hyatt, former CEO of Thomas Nelson and author of Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World, for direction. Michael has a course, Get Published, that I knew about but had not yet invested in. A couple of weeks ago I bought it. I have worked through one-third of the course, and I already see benefits from the investment.

Before making this decision, I had written about 15,000 words of what will be about a 70,000 word book. Making the decision to go the traditional route brought some needed re-focusing.

Here are some things that the Get Published course is helping me re-focus on:

  • Research on the subject of shame to see what else has been written about it. This research almost caused me to stop writing on the subject of shame. Authors like Brene Brown recently, and Lewis B. Smedes a couple of decades ago have written some great books on the subject. But I decided that I have a unique insight on the subject.
  • Retool the title. My research did show a need to change the title. The new working title is Living Free from Toxic Shame: Learn from Others Who Have Gone Before You. Let me know what you think about that title!
  • Set some writing and platform building goals. Setting goals isn’t a new practice for me, but the Get Published course helped give some context for my goals. My writing goals are in line with what I want to do. But my platform building needs to pick up some momentum. According to the course, I need about 10,000 unique visitors per month to my website to really catch a publisher’s attention. How many unique visitors now visit each month? About 1,000. So, I need to increase that 10 fold. Will you help me? Easiest way to do that is to share any blog article you like with your social media and email network. 
  • Create a book proposal. This is what I am working on now. I had heard the term before, but if an agent or publisher would have told me to submit a book proposal to them, I would have had no idea where to begin or what they really wanted. Get Published provides a detailed outline along with examples.

Join my email list to get information about my book proposal in my next newsletter. Also you will get the rough draft of each chapter along with recent blog posts right in your email!

Do you have experience working with a traditional publisher? If so, please leave your insight or suggestions.

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I am a longtime Austinite. Married my beautiful wife over 25 years ago. Adopted our son September 2012. Currently a writer and loving it. Previous jobs and careers include project management, missionary, and pastor. I enjoy sports (both watching and playing), traveling, reading, digging in dirt and hanging with my friends and family.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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