During our time spent in the publishing world—and not only that, but during our founder’s time spent in the world of writing and Copy Editing for other writers—it has become very clear that modern-day writers striving to achieve their writing- and publishing-related goals come to experience a number of key, defining Aim Pains.
It was through directly experiencing these from the perspective of a writer, coupled with dealing with other writers’ experiences of them, that has led to Hayley Paige‘s identification of the five Main Aim Pains.
(Aim Pains may be defined as the obstacles or Pain points experienced by authors when not only outlining but also actively striving to achieve their book- and publication-focused aims.)
It was the recognition of each of these Aim Pains that led to Notebook Publishing’s unique and very clear mission centred on providing authors with publishing solutions that overcome all of the most common obstacles facing the dream of book publication.
In this series of articles, we will present each of the five Author Aim Pains, as detailed by Hayley Paige, and discuss how the publishing world generally fails to tackle all of these in unison.
Following, attention will then be directed towards how Notebook Publishing breaks the mould by overcoming every single one, all at once.
This article is written in consideration to the first of the five Main Author Aim Pains: Quality Output.
With the progression of technology and the advent of new and innovative software, applications and tools, writers have been afforded with a very valuable position: that of choice. No longer are they restricted to traditional publishing, involving the sending of query letters and sample chapters, before being offered a publishing contract (and a huge cut in their royalties!).
Now, writers have more publishing platforms available to them then ever before, with a solution presented to cater to every budget, every level of proficiency, and in mind of achieving every goal.
However, there is one fundamental flaw:
There is a drawback to virtually every solution. It is a continuous game of swings and roundabouts; pulling left a little only to have to shift right; taking one step forward and then another one right back.
Progress is slow and inconsistent, and dreams stay just that: dreams.
(And we all know: the difference between a dream and a goal is a plan. Without a viable plan in place, how can anything transmute from being just a dream to being actionable?)
More books are being published every year than ever before, with Nick Morgan at Forbes stating that as many as 1 million books are published in the USA alone every single year, with potentially more than half coming from self-published avenues—and, importantly, there is a common problem identifiable amongst most:
That’s right. That book that has been toiled over for countless hours, days, weeks, months and, in some cases, years, is thrown out there, into the throngs of millions of book-buyers and -readers, without much consideration to the quality of output.
And we all know: we definitely do judge a book by its cover (and by that we mean cover quality, cover design, cover print quality, binding, and page quality, etc.). Let’s be honest: If it looks like it’s been printed on a home computer, the content can’t be anything to write home about. Right?
Maybe that’s not completely accurate: of course, we’re sure self-publishing authors do consider the quality of output, but the fact remains that everyday self-publishing platforms do not offer sufficient quality if authors want to achieve other goals as well.
You get out what you put in, after all, and so ‘free’ tends to equal minimal quality.
And contrary to popular (self-publishing author) belief, it’s very easy to identify a self-published book when it hasn’t been published in line with industry standards. As examples:
- The cover is a giveaway in 99 out of 100 cases (as determined through Notebook Publishing’s own extensive research).
2. And then there is the editing, which tends to either be lacking or has been skipped entirely, with a large number of authors believing their writing is of such a high level that an editor isn’t required.
3. Typesetting is commonly overlooked, with only very basic page-formatting carried out.
4. And the printing quality overall—including the paper used, the cover finish, and the binding—all remain all too clearly indicative of self-published work.
All of the above mean a self-publishing author will experience an uphill struggle in positioning him- or herself amongst traditionally publishing authors, never mind in their pursuit of achieving Best Seller status.
But Notebook Publishing has prioritised quality output in line with the five Main Aim Pains. This is one of the most important approaches to enabling our authors to stand upon the same stage occupied by traditionally publishing authors.
How have we managed this? In a number of ways.
First, following much research, Hayley Paige devised our very own Cover Creation Code. This identifies and overcomes the common tell-tale signs of self-publishing authors’ cover designs. We use this unique (and only available at Notebook Publishing!) formula in the design of all of our titles (notably those of authors publishing with us from February 2019). Furthermore, we have our very own dedicated, experienced and professional Cover Designer.
Second, we present all of our writers with the opportunity to have their manuscripts Copy Edited, on a word-by-word basis, by an experienced and professionally trained editor on the Notebook team. (And speaking of which, you can get a free 1,000-word Manuscript Copy Edit here!)
Third, every single book published through Notebook Publishing is professionally typeset, meaning the interior of our books is presented in exactly the same way as any industry-level publication.
And fourth, all of our books are printed using high-end printing technology, and high-quality paper and materials for both paperback and hardcover, with vivid colour-printing available for photographs and colour interiors, without any bleed.
Through the above four provisions, the quality of our publications is precisely in line with those books published by traditional publishing houses—but thankfully are far removed from basic free self-publishing platform options, including Lulu and Create Space.
Our attention to detail and our pressing need to provide writers with affordable options when it comes to publishing their work have been pivotal when we have considered how we could address the five Author Aim Pains.
Without question, every writer publishing their book wants to achieve the greatest of heights and the most incredible results; no writer would ever invest so much of their time, ink and soul in a book they would be happy to publish at a less-than-perfect standard. And the fact that writers do this every single day—and not just here and there, but in huge numbers—shows that achieving quality book publication has been a huge obstacle for self-publishing writers (particularly when coupling this aim with others, such as 100% royalties, for example).
Notebook Publishing places fundamental importance and priority on the quality of our authors’ publications, meaning poor output can now be put firmly in the past.
Remember this: as an author, you can have everything. Quality doesn’t need to be an Aim Pain (and neither does any other aspect!).
We’ve got you covered (pun intended).