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Amy Shojai, award-winning author of 27 best-selling books. Here she explains why self-publishing is a good choice for writers of non-fiction.

Publishing has changed.

Today is the best time to be an author, particularly for non-fiction writers. Here are some top reasons.

Timing for Publication. Every author must polish, edit and best prepare their work to be professional quality. And while some fiction has timeliness factors, non-fiction more often demands specific scheduling for best effect. Tying a non-fiction book’s publication to a calendar event that is important to that work can impact marketability. With indie publishing, the author has control and can plan the book release and promotions for the ideal time. Anniversaries of historical events can be tied to non-fiction books on these subjects.

Updates/Revisions. Yes, any self published author can update book's digital file quickly to correct a typo or improve an edit. Non-fiction authors benefit even more from the ability to revise and release updated versions of informational and prescriptive works. These can be done easily and quickly, while books published traditionally cannot be revised until/unless a set number of sales demands a new edition. Having books with outdated information can hurt the non-fiction author’s reputation and platform, so self-publishing books on non-fiction has great advantages.

Platform and Reputation. Niche non-fiction sales have dropped or gone away entirely in traditional publishing. That makes sense, because the book must sell enough to “feed” the agent, the editor and the publishing house staff and expenses. For the self-published author who has the reputation, expertise and audience, niche non-fiction books sell steadily and well and can be a renewable resource. They also increase the author’s expertise, offer credentials for speaking engagements and endorsements, and can lead to many other opportunities. Non-fiction is much easier to market.

Pricing. All self-published authors have the ability to price books as they see fit, and change that price as needed. Non-fiction books can be priced higher than fiction, and generally sell better at a higher price point.

Control. This for me is the biggest advantage of all, and covers everything else. The non-fiction author knows what appeals to his or her audience, and has the ability to choose the cover of the book, timing of the release, pricing, revisions and more to best leverage the book’s launch.

For more information on self-publishing, contact The Country Press.

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