5 Things to Do Before Self-Publishing Your Book

self-publishing your book

You’ve been working on your manuscript for months, and now, you’re almost ready to officially put your self-published book up for sale. Whether you’ve been writing an ebook, a collection of poems, or a paperback novel, you’re so excited to share your book with the world! But publishing a book is actually a team effort, and by working with a graphic designer like Caligraphics Design, you can give your book some extra pizzazz and ensure that it looks polished. Here’s how to put the finishing touches on your self-published manuscript!

Hire a Graphic Designer

You don’t want to put your book on the market without adding a professional cover first! While you could create a cover by yourself, you can also start looking for a graphic designer to get the best results. By working with a graphic designer like Caligraphics Design, you can make sure that your book has an attention-grabbing cover that will draw in readers. When you connect with a graphic designer, talk to them about your vision for the cover of the book. Make sure to be clear and specific about what you want, and share details about the plot that will help your graphic designer understand exactly what you’re looking for.

Read Your Book Aloud

If you want to ensure that every sentence in your book flows, it’s a good idea to read it out loud. You’ll be able to see if your dialogue sounds natural, whether or not your sentences are too wordy, and how your overall narrative flows. Reading your book aloud lets you experience your book from your readers’ perspective! Set aside a few hours for this project and give yourself time for making appropriate corrections afterward.

Get Feedback From Beta Readers

Of course, there’s nothing better than getting feedback from real readers before you publish your book! You can get suggestions and comments from readers before publishing by sending out advanced copies to beta readers. To find beta readers, Tiffany Hawk recommends asking your friends and family, trading manuscripts with writer friends, getting involved with an online writing group, or even hiring readers through freelance jobs platforms.

Work With an Editor and Proofreader

To get specific feedback on everything from narrative structure and character development to grammatical mistakes and spelling corrections, you will need to hire an editor and a proofreader. An editor will help you organize and pace your story – basically, their job is to make sure that all of the pieces fit together. On the other hand, a proofreader has an eye for detail, and they will be going over your spelling and grammar to catch any minor mistakes. It’s always a good idea to hire both an editor and a proofreader. They will be able to catch mistakes that you might have glossed over!

Develop a Marketing Strategy

While you could hire a digital marketing consultant to promote your book, you can also take a DIY approach to advertising in order to save money. For instance, you can share the news of your book launch on social media. IngramSpark recommends using hashtags, sticking to a posting schedule to stay consistent, and checking out your analytics on different platforms to make sure you’re reaching your target audience. You can also use an online banner maker to create banners for your profiles based on your book cover. Additionally, you can host a giveaway and hand out free copies of your book to the winners!

Self-publishing a book is a lot of work. You want to make sure that you can reach as many readers as possible when your book hits the market. With these tips, you’ll be able to perfect your final manuscript and impress your readers!

Searching for a graphic designer for your ebook? Caligraphics Design can help you prepare your self-published manuscript! Reach out through the contact form on our website to get started.

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Scaling Up: Knowing Who and What to Hire

There comes a time for every small business when you have to hire if you want to grow larger. But expanding your personnel is also a risk – each new member of the team can represent an investment and banking on the wrong person may result in slowed momentum and missed opportunities. In this article, we’ll look at how to find and hire professionals who will help your business grow safely, using examples in sales and marketing.

Freelancers

The advantages of hiring freelancers are numerous – for a start, they’re often cheaper when being paid per task, they come at a lower risk and they can bring fresh outside perspective having worked across the field. A good marketeer or salesman in the modern era will have a comprehensive and thorough understanding of popular, current tech solutions, for example. If you’re not adept with managing a CRM or tracking KPIs, the right freelancer can instantly step into your business and improve its value simply by addressing these points. You may even consider asking a freelancer who worked well and profited the business to join up full-time.

Despite these obvious advantages, freelancers are not always the right option for a small business. One clear reason for this is that they tend to function well in the short-term but, with all their understanding and knowledge of your business, may at any moment turn tail and leave. This is especially true with marketing execs, as they will have carried out research into your demographics and measured what worked and what didn’t. It’s also true, to varying extents, that each new employee requires onboarding and, with a high freelance turnover, you may be spending a lot of time and effort training people who end up working at the company for short periods of time.

Freelancers also benefit from reduced accountability – many small businesses will at some point hire someone who produces sub-standard work and then walks away. Whereas, with full-time employees, work performance holds serious ramifications for their long-term careers.

Full-Time Employees

Hiring full-time staff should be considered the riskier but potentially more rewarding option. With the right nurturing, a talented employee can completely transform the trajectory of a business and the individual’s value tends to increase with growing understanding of the company. It’s important, before making a decision about whether to hire full-time, to do the maths and calculate whether they will bring measurable value to the company. In sales and marketing, this is usually more easily quantified and, financially speaking, it can make more sense to offer part-time or temp contracts, whilst carefully weighing up the options carefully beforehand.

The dangers of hiring full-time relate mostly to the nature of the business itself. Some companies are seasonal-dependent and, by hiring permanent, you’re paying for services that are not necessarily needed at all months of the year. This is where sales and marketing can differ – as sales staff can be brought on for shorter periods with great impact, whereas marketers tend to require year-long timeframes to work their magic. Remember as well, to factor in overall costs when hiring perm, including perks, added paperwork, and holidays. It’s estimated that added benefits come in at about 1.4% of the basic salary.

Services

Not all expertise comes in the form of freelancers or full-time employees. There’s also a plethora of consultants and off-the-shelf services to help you and your business succeed. Using these intelligently can make all the difference – for example, a Limited Liability Company (LLC) can help reduce liability, provide tax advantages and reduce paperwork. By hiring Zenbusiness, a formation service, you can avoid hefty lawyer fees and receive help negotiating state regulations (as these differ from region to region).

Whoever you hire, remember to carry out as much research as is possible and ethical. It’s a risky business, sharing responsibility with new personnel but a necessary one for growth and, when done correctly, everyone can benefit tremendously.

Caligraphics Design provides book cover design and formatting for both ebook and print manuscripts. If you have a book, whether fiction or non, get in touch at: www.caligraphicsdesign.com and see how we can help you.

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7 Techniques to Help You Start Learning Photoshop

laptop computer with Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop has been synonymous with all forms of digital art since the Stone Age of computer graphics, visualization, and post-processing. The program has undergone countless changes in quality of life over the past two decades and has become a more usable and powerful program than ever before.

For beginners, getting to know the features, settings, tools, and techniques of Photoshop can be a mind-building and patient exercise. If you don’t have a solid foundation for the basics, productivity with Photoshop scares you, overwhelms you, and you may have a computer hole in your window.

Adobe Photoshop has access to multiple careers. Graphic style and photography are the most common. In fact, front-end developers and production assistants can make a huge difference with their Photoshop knowledge. To master a skill always start from learning the skill, let’s look at a few techniques that can help you learn the basics of Photoshop.

1. Basics of Graphic Design

Graphic design is easy to practice. An art school is not a necessary basis for becoming a graphic designer if you roll up your sleeves and master the basic principles of good design.

If you are using Photoshop for professional work, keyboard shortcuts are very important to maintain efficiency and ensure the benefits of your program. Creating a physical cheat page not only serves as a keyboard shortcut for keyboard shortcuts, but it also helps you master the powerful tools of Photoshop. Multiple resources are available to learn the basics of photoshop. You still don’t need to buy Photoshop. If you have time, try Canva Design School. Plus, HackDesign has a great newsletter that keeps you busy every week.

2. Photoshop Interface

Adobe guides you through the Photoshop workspace. Getting started with Photoshop will show you how to use your workspace. Start reading instructions and follow the guidelines. Learn how to use photoshop workspaces to maximize workflow. 

If you need to access the tool, see the Workspace Basic Support page. Photoshop also provides in-depth tips with text descriptions and videos to help you better understand how each tool works.

3. Pick Tools One By One

The Photoshop tool palette on the left is also thin and long. However, if you click the little arrow below it, you will measure the square next to the hidden tools. There are nearly 65 square meters of tools for collecting, trimming and cutting, finishing, painting, drawing, and sorting.

Choose your desired tool every day. Find a basic guide that shows you how to use it in the actual degree project involved.

As simple as “Photoshop with Rod Tools”, connecting to the Internet on YouTube can be a step-by-step lesson. Photoshop Square’s tips and tricks are a good place to start.

4. Adjustment Layers

In post-production, few tools are more important than adjusting the layers to create a wonderful final image. You can adjust the hue, color, and saturation of the image by adding a state-of-the-art filter that can be adjusted immediately. The extra layer is important because it can be turned on or off with just one button, so changes are temporary and easy to manage. You can find setting levels on the tab as a black and white circle icon. Use it wisely.

Layers quickly become your best friend in Photoshop. When working with large, complex images with multiple layers and sublayers, it’s important to tag and organize them so that they are easy to manage.

Once you have the top layer organized, you can start working with slide masks, layer styles, and loads of other useful tools that work even better when things are neat and tidy.

5. Photoshop Micro skill

Over the decades, photoshop changed a lot and contains various sub-parts along with its use. Whether you’re using in telling stories, starting concepts, imagining something new, science, or some alternative use of it.

But did you find that you are only editing videos here? Or create great typographic messages? You can even create a link to a nurse’s email address, HTML account, or jersey. Your boss may need to develop 3D models.

There are many options for you to choose a talent or location that interests you and that you can get used to in Photoshop.

6. Challenge Yourself

By challenging yourself, you can monetize your performance in Photoshop skill learning. You can earn money on sites like Fiverr and Design Crowd in your spare time. Why not use simpler polygons and see if you can fix the problem right away?

The unit of assignments is sometimes simple. For example, someone could lift you to remove the background from a series of photos. Or restore a broken photo. It may be a Photoshop teaching approach called Sink or Float, but it has some responsibilities.

Of course, your portfolio may not pay attention as a beginner. However, you need to start somewhere. Otherwise, you can use the talents posted by others as an example of your education.

7. Follow an Expert

Finding a real-world mentor is impractical, but virtual mentors are easier to find. Select the world you want to purchase and find online consultants that the UN agency should be focusing on in this niche.

For example, if you want to learn digital painting, note that the United Nations Agency for Digital Creation offers digital painting instruction.

Think about the value of intentional gratification. Select some lessons, copy them and try to change them up with your creativity. See what this method teaches you.

Final Thought

Photoshop is huge. With hundreds of tools, techniques, menus, and options, the tutorials that define this area can be overwhelming. However, we believe that the tools you use should never get in the way of your creative and professional goals.   Some photos are curved. Some are too dark or too light and some just need a little more flavor. Learn how some seemingly small changes can make a huge difference to your photos, from leveling and composing the horizon to balancing the exposure and adjusting the colors. If you’ve online store, you can use your photoshop skill to edit WooCommerce product video of your top rated products and attract more customers.

Fruitless Endeavors

We’ve been designing ebook covers for 9 years, and have always been happy to do an unlimited  number of proofs for our clients, but we’ve had so many looky loos who disappear somewhere along the design process that we’ve decided to institute a $20 Start Fee for new clients. The time we lose in these fruitless endeavors is better devoted to our valued clients who are serious about having Caligraphics design a book cover for them. 

Ebook covers by Caligraphics