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  About the course

The Set the Foundation for Self-Publishing Success course will help you shift your mindset from author to publisher, do the market research to learn who your readers actually are and where to find them, understand why early readers are so important, prepare your manuscript, learn how to beta publish, and show you how to get your book the editing it deserves.

Now, you may think this is a little boring and you want to get on to the juicy topics like uploading your book to the online retailers and marketing. However, the proper execution of these foundational tasks not only assures that your book competes with those released by the traditional publishing houses but actually sets you up in advance to do good marketing. In addition, it is a lot less costly (and frustrating) to do these things up front rather than having to do them over after you’ve published.

Keep reading or listen to the 6:40-minute audio. (Click to listen or right-click to download.)

Preparing a manuscript correctly, identifying your readers and your book categories, adhering to professional standards, sharing with beta readers, and obtaining professional editing, are tasks that set yourself up for success as an author and a publisher.

No amount of marketing dollars will make your book succeed if it is not professionally produced.

Specifically, this course will:

  1. Align your perhaps impatient author mindset (“I just want to get it out there!”) with your publisher mindset (“I want to do it professionally!”).
  2. Show you how to do the market research to learn who your readers really are and where your book fits in the marketplace so that you can position it competitively.
  3. Introduce you to the concept of beta publishing and other techniques you can use to perfect your manuscript, build your platform, and create awareness about your book before you’re finished writing it.
  4. Walk you through the editing and proofreading process that is crucial to creating a manuscript that is truly ready for formatting and design.

Most authors write a book, get a few friends and family to look it over and proofread it, and publish. That is not a formula for success.

Preparing your manuscript for success includes the following steps, which you see in the course menu.

  • Choosing a release date you can meet with a quality product
  • Creating the manuscript professionally using appropriate tools and services
  • Sharing your writing with early readers to make sure it hits all the right buttons for your genre and your audience
  • Getting great editing for your book so when it hits the stores it's error free and worthy of five star reviews

This course has four sections:

  1. Preparing Your Manuscript
  2. Market Research & Competitive Analysis
  3. Beta Publishing
  4. Editing & Proofreading

The lessons in each of these four sections map out the steps you need to take to ensure that your manuscript is of the highest possible quality and tested with the market.

The steps in this course are often overlooked by authors, which is why self-publishing gets a bad rap. But I'm going to help you publish professionally so that your book is indiscernible from books put out by the major publishing houses.

You can do this!

Here, I want to take a little break to say congratulations for making the commitment to finishing your book and preparing it for publication. You're in the minority because while many authors dream of publishing, most don't take the steps to actually make it happen. So, just by starting, you're halfway there. So pat yourself on the back.


During this course, you'll find links to many resources and additional reading. Some are resources I've prepared for you, and others are contributed by my friends in the independent publishing world.

For example, I've prepared the following ebooks and documents. You'll find links to them in the next lesson.

  • A Consumer’s Guide to Self-Publishing Tools & Services ebook
  • Self-Publishing Boot Camp Guide for Authors, 4th edition ebook: my complete guide to creating, publishing, distributing, marketing, and selling your books. (You get a print edition of this 344 page book with the Self-Pub Boot Camp six-course bundle.)
  • Manuscript preparation timeline worksheet
  • Checklist for a professionally published book from the Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA)

You'll also find links to worksheets, audio, and video by me and other experts who have valuable advice and examples. The self-publishing community is wise and generous. Welcome to the community of experts!

About the Self-Pub Boot Camp series of courses

Before we begin, let me explain how this course fits in the series. This first course, Set the Foundation for Self-Publishing Success, is a stepping stone to the next two courses, Create Your Publishing Business and Make Your Book.

I think of the first three courses as foundational. They provide all the information and guidance you need to create a really good book.

Distribute Your Book and Sell Your Book help you get your book into the marketplace after it's done, though you can also use these tools for beta reading and pre-selling. You'll find out more about these tools in the courses and in the consumer's guide.

The last course in the series is Market Your Book. But marketing is definitely not the last thing you should do in your publishing journey. There is a lot of marketing information in this course and all of the courses. It's a constant process and it's never too early to start.

Thank you again for your interest in this course. I look forward to helping you take this first, determining step toward your success as an author.

Questions? Shoot me an email!