There are innumerable benefits to publishing via an Author Collective, here I attempt to put them in some kind of order.
- Collaboration. One advantage of an indie-publishing collective like Triskele Books is that we each have different kinds of knowledge. It’s impossible to master finances, marketing, design, social media, hold down a day job AND write good books. Two heads are better than one, but five is totally brilliant!
- Trust. Finding like-minded people who you trust with every aspect of your work is the foundation stone of Triskele Books. We have five individually talented writers who will tell each other the unpalatable truth. This makes each member raise their game because no one wants to let the others down. We’re honest about every aspect of what we do – otherwise Triskele couldn’t function.
- Variety. An essential asset. In Triskele, we write in different genres: literary fiction, crime, and historical fiction. Through our shared interests, we have each discovered great writers we might not have otherwise picked off the shelves, such as Liza’s HF recommendations, like Karen Maitland & Annemarie Neary.
- Strengths & Weaknesses. Self-publishing is a lonely journey, and for many people, too daunting to even consider. Everyone needs a hand to hold at some point, and this is the beauty of a collective. If you have no idea about ISBNs but are a whizz at copy-editing, or a colleague is skilled at cover design but terrified of discoverability and algorithms, it’s much easier to share the workload and lessen your burden. If you don’t know an answer, you have another four people to call on.
- Independence. In an age when agents and publishers are playing it safe, author collectives offer the type of benefits and support even a small publishing house couldn’t offer – in order to publish what you want, rather than what the market conditions dictate.
- Ideals. Triskele Books have established ideals. High quality writing and professional presentation. Having five talented writers on hand, we have a plethora of skills to call on for editing, proofing, consultation, co-promotion and marketing.
- Costs. Financially, each member of Triskele contributes equally to costs incurred such as webhosting, print materials, marketing opportunities etc – whilst retaining our own profits. Split five ways this is a huge help and means we can aim higher and cover more ground.
- Professionalism. High standards for book formatting and cover design are also our key ideals. We’re lucky to have a talented creative designer on board (JD Smith) but would always urge anyone self-publishing to pay what they can to secure professional services such as design and proof reading. It pays dividend in the long run, even if there’s an initial outlay.
- Knowing the Rules. It’s important to have a good grasp of a variety of rules and regulations if you decide to self-publish your novel. Copyright & Permissions is one minefield definitely worth study and sharing knowledge among other writers is vital.
- Author Platforms. Something that takes time, effort and longevity to establish. When all you want to do is write, the thought of marketing, using social media, blogging etc, is an annoyance that uses up valuable writing time. Having a group of people to share the burden with is a huge benefit.
For more detailed information on these tips, and for more like them, please take a look at our ‘How-we-did-it’ book, The Triskele Trail, which details the highs and lows of our publishing journey and gives lots of support and advice along the way.
What people are saying about The Triskele Trail :
“Despite having published more than eighty books with traditional publishing houses I found the path through the jungle of independent and self-publishing peppered with booby traps for the unwary. I wish I’d had this book when I set out, it would have saved me a great deal of time, money and heartache … This book is a clear, calm, factual guide from people who truly know what they are talking about.” — Author and ghost-writer, Andrew Crofts.
“A point made right at the beginning of this excellent resource is that this is NOT a how-to book. The introduction states that is an account of what the Triskele Collective did: what worked well for them, what worked to a certain level and what didn’t work at all. By making the `not a how-to’ point, the authors are doing themselves an injustice. For anyone intent on self-publishing, this is an absolute must-buy, must-read, must keep as an ongoing reference. It is packed full of useful information: links, websites, things to do, people to follow, books to read, paths to take, roads to avoid and so much more. Not a how-to? Maybe not. In my opinion, it is far more informative and useful than that.” — Co-Author of The Writers’ ABC Checklist, Lorraine Mace.