Carl Vernon, author of Anxiety Rebalance, is the most recent success story in UK self-publishing. After weeks on the overall Amazon bestseller list, the author and speaker answered some of our questions about the reasons for his success, his level of control over the publishing process and how he used self-publishing as route to a traditional publishing deal.
1. You self-published your book Anxiety Rebalance last year to great acclaim. We’re pleased to hear that you’ve recently been offered a big publishing deal after a month on the Amazon UK overall bestseller list. You definitely seem to have cracked the code for successful self-publishing, did you know you were going to self-publish when you began writing the book? What were your reasons for choosing this route and was it your intention to eventually win the attention of a publisher?
Yes and yes. In such a competitive space you have to stand out. There is no better way to stand out than to compete with all the other top-selling books. That, I believe, was the key to me getting the attention of the world’s top publishers.
2.What was the driving force to publish a book? Others might have gone the simpler route of creating PDFs or a blog to share these insights.
I wanted to provide answers for as many sufferers as possible, and a book provided the perfect solution. It’s something you can keep at home, carry around with you, and go back to if needed.
3. Your book seeks to help people suffering from anxiety and depression, which you have struggled with yourself. Do you feel that sharing your personal experience promotes a sense of solidarity that speaks to your readers? Do you feel you would have been able to communicate your message as well as you have if you had handed the reins to a traditional publisher right off the bat?
Great question. One of the key reasons for the success of the book (based on feedback) is the fact it’s based on my personal story, and how it allows others to connect with me and my experience. I wouldn’t have gone with a traditional publisher that didn’t see how key this was to helping others in the same position I used to be in.
4. What did you learn during the production stage of creating your book? Did you enlist the help of professional editors and designers? Did you take on any of the process yourself?
I’m a control freak, so managing and handling the whole process worked for me, until the point where professionals were needed including copy-editing and design (both of which did an excellent job).
5. How did you prepare for the marketing and publicity of your book? What, in your eyes, was the most important thing to keep in mind when carrying out these campaigns?
Stay true to yourself, and people will love you for your honesty. The moment you start to deviate or lie is the exact moment you’ll fail.
6. Any advice for fellow self-publishers?
Don’t do it (lol). I jest, but be prepared for plenty of hard work! The competition is fierce, and the odds are stacked against you. If that doesn’t stop you, go for it – nothing will.