BOOK REVIEW: Self-Printed by Catherine Ryan Howard

selfprintedcrh.jpgTrashionista first featured Catherine Ryan Howard back in June 2010 when her travel memoir, Mousetrapped, was released. The book chronicles her year (and a bit!) working for Disney in Orlando, with some hilarious adventures and anecdotes. And of course, more recently we posted about Catherine's upcoming novel, Results Not Typical. It seems that Catherine's writing knows no bounds, because not only can she pen one hell of a funny memoir, she's also written a self-publishing guide, aptly titled Self-Printed.

You might wonder why I've chosen to review this title. After all, this is a chick-lit website. As it happens, I'm a writer (well, let's just say in the making!) and have a penchant for guides like this. But there are plenty more upcoming writers out there, and many who read Trashionista. And if you're going to be a successful writer, regardless of whether you're traditionally published or have chosen the route of self-publishing, then you're going to require a lot of self-promotion.

Catherine's book Mousetrapped was self-published (which was a surprise, as it's so professionally edited and presented that when I received a copy I assumed she'd been snapped up by a publishing house.) Alas, no - because Mousetrapped, albeit a wonderful book, only catered for a small market, traditional publishers didn't see it as an option. And so Catherine embarked on her mission to self-print.

Writers who choose to do this now have a variety of options readily available, a world away from the old-style 'vanity' presses. With websites and editing tools, an author can create an exceptional copy and in this book, Catherine tells you how. Based on her own experiences, Catherine explains the best routes to take, and how to use the wealth of resources out there to your advantage.

There are chapters about presentation and planning, and of course, how to promote. Catherine provides a lot of handy hints about blogging, editing, site design, fan pages and online networking. Self-publishing can go horribly wrong, and throughout this book, Catherine provides hints, tips and all the advice you need to help make your book a self-printed success.

What made this book so perfect was Catherine's humour throughout - yep, she's been there. She's spent a LOT of time and effort (and coffee money, I presume - check out her blog, Catherine, Caffeinated!) on learning about the world of self-printing and making her own books successful. It takes time and hard work, and she's done it - and won't hesitate to provide you with the blunt, honest truth. She's naturally gifted with wit and Self-Printed not only gave me a wealth of advice but made me laugh in the same way that Mousetrapped did. This woman is immensely talented.

Self-Printed is a must-read if you're considering a career as a writer. And not just a self-published one. This book contains tips that everyone who plans on becoming an author needs know. It's for everyone. And it's funny. In fact, I've recommended it to quite a few people already and will no doubt read it again when my own book edits are complete.

Needless to say, I'm very much looking forward to Results Not Typical. But Self-Printed is one of the best writing-related how-to books I have read in a LONG time!

Rating: 5/5

Like this? Try Wannabe a Writer We've Heard Of? by Jane Wenham-Jones
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BOOK REVIEW: Self-Printed by Catherine Ryan Howard - Comments

  • yes, print yourself, be strong.

  • Dead-on review. Catherine's blog (where a lot of the book came from) helped me a lot when I made the decision to self-publish, particularly with navigating CreateSpace and what to expect. Sometimes I think I could write a book about self-publishing since I've learned so much throughout the novels I've done, but I wouldn't. Leave that to Catherine, she does it well and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this book to any aspiring authors.



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