Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

Self-Publishing On A Poverty Budget

Welcome to the Friday post for the Behind The Scenes of Notes from An Alien series.

This short novel is for sale in print and e-book editions but still also FREE :-)

And, Any questions you may have about the book can be asked in the Comments of Any of these Friday posts.

I do put links to all my posts on Google Plus and the question I’ll answer today came from there:

“Did you have an editor for Notes from An Alien?”

I did and will tell you about her but first I want to talk about authors who self-publish and live below the “Poverty Line“.

The latest figures I have for the U.S.A. say you’re living in poverty if you make less than $23,050 a year.

I live on a military pension and receive $12,372 a year

O.K., it did take me many months to save up what I had to spend but the total for printing and distribution services was $300 through FastPencil (and, that was for both Print and E-book editions).

The cover art was provided free from The Space Telescope Science Institute.FinalCoverNfAAsmall

I added the text on the cover.

Now, we come to what happened when I looked at my funds and wondered how I could afford an editor

I used to work for Book Island in Second Life (you can find out more about that by using the Top Tags widget in the left side-bar).

The owner of the Island had been a publisher in London and recommended I check the universities in my area for Graduate students in the English Departments.

It took me three emails and about two days to be in contact with my editor—Laura Linneman.

I was told by the owner of Book Island that these students are usually willing to do the work with no pay—receiving only the ability to put the job on their resumes.

It was blessedly true in Laura’s case and I naturally gave her an acknowledgement page :-)

Yes, she wasn’t a “Pro” and yes, there were still 12 typos in the text when it was published.


As I related in the previous post, A Book Review That Teaches The Author Something About Typos . . .:

“These typos [four found by a reviewer] were missed by the editor, a number of authors who read the book, and myself

“Yet, before receiving this bit of editorial help, 8 other typos had been identified—typos which this man [the reviewer] didn’t see

“Yes, wonderfully weird proof that we often read a book with typos and never see them.

“And, the typos we do see are often not the ones others see


Now, I should explain what kind of editor Laura was

If you didn’t know there were more than one kind of editor, see the previous post, What Are Editors Good For?.

Laura didn’t fit easily into any of the standard types of editor.

Sure, she did some developmental stuff and did point out some mangled grammar and did spot most of the typos.

But the most important service she offered was delivered after the book was on its way to the publishing-aid company.

I have to call Laura an Emotional and Psychological Support Editor.

Our relationship during the normal phases of editing happened in email and on the phone.

We met in person after that—went to a coffee shop and spent about two hours having a wonderful conversation.

I was feeling like I had postpartum depression.

I was relating every doubt I had about whether the book could actually do what I’d intended.

Laura sat there and, with logic and great compassion, proved that my worries were completely untrue.

So, to wrap up this post, I ask any of you who’ve been through an editorial experience:

Was your editor an Emotional and Psychological Support Editor??
Read more Behind the Scenes posts…
To Leave A Comment, Use The Link At The Top-Right of The Post :-)
For Private Comments, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com
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One response to “Self-Publishing On A Poverty Budget

  1. Pingback: Are There Too Many Ways To Self-Publish? | Notes from An Alien

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