Wednesday, March 22, 2023

How to Self-Publish a Book in Kenya

By Benson Bundi

How to Self-Publish a Book in Kenya: The dream of becoming a published author is shared by many. With the right guidance and dedication, it can be made a reality.

Writing and self-publishing your book can seem intimidating. However, all the steps involved in bringing your creative words to life are achievable with proper preparation and research.

This blog post will take you through everything you need about self-publishing a book in Kenya.

1.   Have a Dream

The first step to self-publishing a book requires the ambitious writer to have a dream. Not just any dream, mind you, but one of how the final product could be embraced by Kenyan society.

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Starting this process without expectations is like going on a long journey without knowing where you’re going or how you’ll get there. But as soon as that spark of inspiration is decided upon and welcomed with open arms, set your plan in motion.

2.   Research, Research, Research

Behind every successful venture is plenty of research. It may seem tedious, but it can help save time and money in the long run—both of which are essential resources for a budding author.

When researching how to self-publish a book, an excellent place to start is talking to experienced authors. They can provide invaluable advice and tips on completing the process from beginning to end.

In addition, conducting online research gives you helpful information about services like copyediting, cover design, and printing options. Although getting all this research together may seem like a lot of work, it will eventually set you up for success.

3.   Write an Outline

Drawing up this planning document at the beginning is essential to ensure the process runs smoothly and the finished product is what you had hoped for.

Your outline should include the number of pages you’d like, which publisher and printing house will be used, and a timeline for when your initial drafts are due.

Other helpful items that could be added are details regarding artwork, necessary research data and sources, ideas on marketing and promoting, plus any legal matters that may need to be taken care of.

If creating your outline overwhelms you, there are plenty of resources available both online and around Kenya that can help get you up to speed so you can start the self-publishing process with confidence.

4.   Decide on Your Timeline

No matter how excited you are to get your book published, it’s essential to give yourself ample time to put together a quality product. Carefully consider how long it will take to research, write, edit and polish your book before submitting it to a publisher or printing house.

Also, be realistic about the time it takes to get feedback from readers, make revisions and receive the actual copies of your book.

Keep in mind that these activities should allow enough time to think and reflect, so take your time with this process.

5.   Build an Audience

Once you’ve decided on your timeline, it’s time to build an audience. This is where the power of social media comes into play. Consider setting up an Instagram or Facebook account to promote your book as it nears completion.

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You can also create a website or blog to spread the word further and gain support for your writing. Additionally, utilize any connections with local bookstores, libraries, or other authors to get your work noticed.

6.   Start the Actual Writing

Once you have all the preliminary steps of self-publishing a book in Kenya nailed down, it’s time to start putting words to paper. Writing your book can be daunting, especially if it’s your first-time self-publishing.

Start by setting daily or weekly goals for yourself and reward yourself when you meet them. Remember, writers write differently than the first time; it often takes several revisions to get the content right.

7.   Manuscript Editing and Cover Design

Once you have a draft of your book completed, it’s time to have it edited. Editing is essential in the book-writing process, even if you’ve done numerous revisions.

This is where a professional editor will help you spot any grammar and spelling mistakes and provide helpful feedback on your work’s overall flow and structure.

You’ll need to consider cover art for your book. This can be done in-house, or hire a professional designer to create something special and unique for your work.

8.   Printing and Publishing

Once your manuscript is edited and the cover designed, it’s time to print and publish your book. You have a few options here. If you’re printing in Kenya, then be sure to research local publishers or printing houses that can help with the process.

You can look into Print on Demand (POD) services that offer quick turnaround times and cost-effective printing solutions.

9.   Promotion and Marketing

The final step in self-publishing a book in Kenya is promotion and marketing. You’ll want to ensure you’re getting your work out and in front of the right people. Consider speaking with local bookstores, libraries, and book clubs to see if they would be interested in hosting events or carrying out your work.

Additionally, use social media to reach out to local influencers. Create a plan for promoting and marketing, then implement it.

Bottom Line

The process of self-publishing a book in Kenya has always been challenging and has many benefits. With a bit of time and effort, you can publish your book and make it available to readers in Kenya and worldwide. We hope this guide has helped get you started on your publishing journey.

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