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The Process of Writing and Publishing a Book


The Process of Writing and Publishing a Book


Paul Millerd recently self-published a book, and in this article, he shares the process and the practical details that will be useful for anyone considering self-publishing.

“#1 There is a big gap between publishing blog posts and “writing a book”

I decided to write a book with the mindset of I will throw together some blog posts, edit them, smooth the rough edges and hit publish. I estimated this would take me about three months.

I was wrong.

Quickly, I realized that the level of complexity of a longer piece (let’s say >10k words) was an order of magnitude different than putting out a long essay. I was too optimistic and in the first months, I kept pushing out the publishing date.

From idea to publishing, it took me about 13 months. Knowing what I know now, I think I could do it in 6-9 months. The number one thing I’d do differently is starting working with an editor much sooner. I handed things over to an amazing editor Paula Trucks-Pape, near what I thought was the “end” of the process. Luckily, she had a lot of great ideas and suggested I take a little more time.

#2 The reason it is so complex is also because of personal preference

The reason most people end up attempting to publish something that looks and feels like a book is that as soon as you level up the complexity you can see that producing something pretty close to a book from a publisher is possible.

This is what led me to hire multiple editors to help me, hire a designer for a book cover and proofread and edit it about 100 times throughout the process.

Could I have shipped something a few months ago? Yes. But I knew that I wasn’t done yet and could do better. So I put in that extra 20% to take it to the next level.

Key points include:

  • Paperback and hardcover

  • The costs

  • Changes in self-perception


Read the full article, Finished the Book!… and Ten Quick Reflections On The Process, on