2020 Self-Publishing Retrospective: A Very Unusual Year in Review

2020 is sure to go down in history as one of the most difficult years ever as the coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic continues spreading around the globe, threatening the physical and mental health of Earth’s inhabitants while simultaneously causing economic hardship for billions. And although the world continues to struggle, we are witnessing the good inherent in all people as neighbors help neighbors, friends help friends and loved ones help and cherish those they love. For many writers, the early days of quarantining allowed them to find their creative energy to write and perhaps even (finally) finish that book they’ve been working on.

It’s apparent in the numbers. 2020 book sales boomed! While final numbers for 2020 aren’t available at the time of this writing, NPD Bookscan reported an overall 6.4% increase for the first three quarters over the comparable quarters in 2019, led by a whopping 36% jump in young adult nonfiction, a 29% increase in juvenile nonfiction and a 19% bump in young adult fiction.

Homeschooling certainly contributed to this increase, and savvy writers were quick to capitalize, as the self-publishing industry is on track to publish more books in 2020 than ever before. For Outskirts Press, the only A+ rated and #1-rated self-publishing company according to the Better Business Bureau and Top Consumer Reviews, respectively, 2020 saw its authors thrive and prosper even in the shadow of the novel coronavirus.

At the 26th Annual Colorado Independent Publishers Association EVVY Awards Banquet, which, for the first time ever, took place “virtually” and streamed live from YouTube, Outskirts Press authors took home a total of 14 impressive 1st-, 2nd- and 3rd-place awards. The recorded virtual ceremony will be available on the CIPA YouTube Channel indefinitely.

Winning a CIPA EVVY Award is a prerequisite to winning the Outskirts Press Best Book of the Year Award and claiming its $1500 Grand Prize. In 2020, the following three First Place EVVY Award winners were in contention for the Best Book of the Year:

Lance Anderson won a First Place Award in Fiction for his novel Life in the Morgue. Lance Anderson spent most of his life as an ironworker until he decided it was time for a change. He took a job at the medical examiner’s office, where he worked for six years and assisted in more than two thousand cases until he was forced to retire due to vision problems. Life in the Morgue is his debut novel, but he has also written two movie scripts that are in the process of being produced.

George Rhoades won a First Place Award for Poetry with Musings from Cowboy Country. George Rhoades is the author of Along the Chisholm Trail and Other Poems and After the Chisholm. He is the winner of numerous poetry awards, including the IBPA Benjamin Franklin Award, Will Rogers Gold and Bronze Medallions, Readers View First Place Award, Indie Excellence Book Award Finalist and Western Music Assoc. Poetry Book Finalist, and other accolades. Born on a farm in Cotton County, Oklahoma, Rhoades has been a rancher, a reporter/editor for UPI and Oklahoma newspapers and a college journalism professor. He retired from UT-Arlington and moved to Duncan, Oklahoma, where he owned a hay farm.

And Gina Simone won a First Place Award in the Spiritual/Religion category with Whispers of Love, which went on to win the coveted Outskirts Press Best Book of the Year Award for 2020 (by securing a whopping 80% of the votes!). Gina Simone is a Spirit Medium certified through the Forever Family Foundation. At the age of 11, she began to notice and feel Spirit and energy around her. Not knowing what these gifts were, she always felt different and isolated. A traumatic pool accident with her toddler son catapulted her into finding the meaning behind life, Spirit, lessons, and karma. She left a comfortable corporate finance career to answer her calling to connect you with your loved ones and with your own innate intuition and higher consciousness. She has been a featured medium on Gwyneth Paltrow’s GOOP.com, has been voted Long Island Best Medium several years in a row, and is also a featured medium on the WBLI 106.1 morning show.

Congratulations, Gina! And congratulations to all our EVVY-Award winners and, in fact, to all our award-winning authors, who celebrated their accomplishments in 2020 by receiving book awards.

How would it feel to publish in 2021 with the A+ Rated and #1-Rated self-publishing company according to the Better Business Bureau and Top Consumer Reviews, respectively? Find out more about publishing, marketing, promoting and submitting your book for publication, reviews, and awards by visiting us at OutskirtsPress.com. We would love to help you publish the book of your dreams in 2021.

 

Save $130 When You POWER LAUNCH Your Book This Month!

Outskirts Press wants to help you hit the ground running in your marketing efforts. Order our popular Book Launch Bundle today and receive an instant 10% discount on the already discounted-bundled price of four of our most popular and effective marketing options! It’s the perfect way to promote your book effectively and affordably.

The Book Launch Bundle powers up your book marketing campaign to reach multiple audiences on a variety of mass marketing venues: social media, print media, broadcast and other formats where readers shop. These offer authors a multi-pronged promotional push:

  • Custom Press Release with international distribution
  • Social Media Setup, which lets you market to a large online audience cost-effectively
  • Book Video Trailer & YouTube Distribution to highlight your story in a compelling marketing video
  • Book Marketing Specialist who will work with you 1-on-1 to jump-start, or restart, your book marketing efforts!

To take advantage the bundled discount PLUS an additional 10% off, simply enter promo code bklaunbdl at checkout when you purchase the Book Launch Bundle today.

 

Publish today with $997 of included extras at no charge!

Human beings are visual creatures — so make sure your book has all the ingredients to turn casual shoppers into buyers. Purchase the Ultimate Black & White or Full-Color publishing package today and we’ll give you a professionally-designed custom cover (a $499 value) AND professionally compose your cover text (a $199 value) absolutely FREE!

The best covers instantly pique interest with captivating images and riveting copy that communicate the character of your book. No matter who your readers are, they should get excited the moment they see your book on a shelf or online.

To claim your very own Free Custom Cover Design PLUS Cover Text Refinement right now, simply order your Ultimate Black & White or Full-Color publishing package today and enter promo code covervalue at checkout. Your free custom cover and cover text refinement services will be added to your account within 48 hours.

When you start today, we will also publish and distribute an Amazon Kindle eBook Edition of your book for free (a $299 value).

So, are you ready to publish your masterpiece with the A+ rated and #1-rated self-publishing company according to the Better Business Bureau and Top Consumer Reviews, respectively? If so, connect with Outskirts Press now in whatever manner is easiest for you:

“This novel is my third book with Outskirts Press. Each time, my Author Representative provided me with the upmost professional guidance and well-founded recommendations, and she made my journey through this process most enjoyable. If I decide to write a fourth book, I hope that I will use Outskirts Press again.” – Robert Steven Habermann, author of The Promise in the Morning Sky: An Immigrant’s Story</strong

 

Extra Publishing Upgrade PLUS an Amazon Kindle Edition

This November we give thanks to the thousands of authors who have put their trust in Outskirts Press to help them achieve their publishing dreams. To show our thanks, we have a special offer to share. For a limited time, we will upgrade your publishing package for FREE!

Interested in Full-Color Publishing? Pay for the less expensive Ultimate Black & White package and you’ll get everything that comes with the Full-Color package at no extra cost. Did you only budget for the Basic Black & White? Buy it today and you can claim all the extras that come with the more inclusive Ultimate Black & White publishing package! Just enter novupgrade at check-out before this limited-time offer comes to an end!

In short, you’ll receive hundreds of dollars of extras! When you start today, we will also publish and distribute an Amazon Kindle eBook Edition of your book for free.

So, are you ready to publish your masterpiece with the A+ rated and #1-rated self-publishing company according to the Better Business Bureau and Top Consumer Reviews, respectively? If so, connect with Outskirts Press now in whatever manner is easiest for you:

“My experience with Outskirts Press was truly outstanding from the very beginning. All representatives were efficient, helpful, professional, and courteous. Outskirts Press made it easy for me to publish my first book. The finished product was a masterpiece! I highly recommend Outskirts Press.” – Introducing Diana McIntyre, author of Just a Piece of Me

 

Double Book, Double eBook Publishing Bonus!

Publish your book with the Ultimate Black & White or Full-Color package today and we will give you 2-times as many authors copies PLUS publish & distribute your Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble NOOK eBook Editions absolutely FREE!

What does the #1 rated self-publisher offer that no one else does?

  • More live, personal support
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  • More award-winning cover designs
  • More free marketing support
  • More, more, more!

Simply enter promotion code dblkindnook when you purchase your Ultimate Black & White or Full-Color package to claim this valuable, limited-time offer today.

So, are you ready to publish your masterpiece with the A+ rated and #1-rated self-publishing company according to the Better Business Bureau and Top Consumer Reviews, respectively? If so, connect with Outskirts Press right now in whatever manner is easiest for you:

“This is the fourth novel I have published with Outskirts Press. The reason for that is simple — without question, they are the absolute best in the wilderness of independent publishers. The OP teams I have worked with are a great bunch of professionals who know their business exceedingly well and made this latest novel the absolute best it could be. None better.” —Andrew Ceroni, author of Special Means

 

Free Custom Cover, Editing, and Amazon eBook Edition Today!

What are the two most important elements to a high-quality, successful self-published book? Many readers would say professional copyediting and a professional custom cover. And when you start today with the A+ rated and #1-rated self-publishing company, they can both be free!

That’s right, we’ll edit the first 15,000 words of your manuscript for free (which means many children’s books and volumes of poetry receive copyediting for their entire book free of charge, and everyone else gets a big jump on things). And since people DO judge books by their covers, you’ll also enjoy a free professional custom cover design (two actually, so you can choose and modify the one you like best).

That’s over $680 of additional value for free when you enter promo code coveredkind in your shopping cart with the Ultimate Black & White or Full-Color package. When you start today, we will also publish and distribute an Amazon Kindle e-book Edition of your book for free (an additional $299 value).

So, are you ready to publish your masterpiece with the A+ rated and #1-rated self-publishing company according to the Better Business Bureau and Top Consumer Reviews, respectively? If so, connect with Outskirts Press right now in whatever manner is easiest for you:

“Outskirts made the publishing process super easy for me and my Author Representative knew what she was doing and was very helpful!” — Katie Patterson, author of Ride.

 

How to Get the Most out of Amazon

Everyone knows that in order to successfully market and sell a self-published book nowadays, you have to leverage Amazon. But there are so many different ways to utilize all that Amazon has to offer the independent author, it can be easy to get overwhelmed. Well, worry no more! Today we’re going to discuss some of the easiest, quickest, and most effective tactics you can pursue (or have a Personal Marketing Assistant pursue for you) in order to get the most out of Amazon.

Your product detail page, or sales page, is the page on Amazon that features your book, its cover image, and its marketing copy. Your author photo and biography may also be displayed here, especially if you already have an Author Page. If you don’t, make sure to create one at authorcentral.amazon.com/ or Outskirts Press can do this for you at https://outskirtspress.com/p/amazonauthorpage. Once you have an Author Page, your biography (and your author photo if you upload one) will appear on all your product detail pages.

Make sure your product detail page is as complete, compelling, and comprehensive as you can. This means making sure your cover image is uploaded and that you have “Look Inside” active on your book. You can personally sign-up for Look Inside from Amazon here https://amazon.com/sitb or Outskirts Press can do this for you at https://outskirtspress.com/p/sitb.

Next, make sure all your different formats are “connected” so that different “Buy” tabs show prospective readers your different editions. You can “connect” them from your Author Page (see above about getting one), or from your Amazon Author Central account. The best formats to have available, in addition to the paperback, of course, is a Kindle e-book edition and an Audio book. If you don’t have either or both of these additional important formats, Outskirts Press can publish and distribute these additional formats for you at https://outskirtspress.com/p/kindle and https://outskirtspress.com/p/audiobook, respectively.

Now that the important logistic steps are taken care of, the next step is educating yourself on all the opportunities Amazon offers self-publishing authors. Fortunately, we’ve made this easy for you, too, by creating the following white papers and tip sheets on the following Amazon topics:

There you have it. Now, you are ready for your masterpiece to take Amazon by storm! Start publishing and marketing today with the A+ rated and #1-rated self-publishing company, according to the Better Business Bureau and Top Consumer Reviews, respectively.

Would you like help choosing your best self-publishing option? Connect with Outskirts Press now in whatever manner is easiest for you:

“I give a big 5-star review to my Author Representative and Outskirts Press! The entire Outskirts process has been with people who are courteous, efficient and knowledgeable. I am very pleased with my first book! Thank you to the entire Outskirts Press staff!” — Jimmy Chew, author of Walking Around Lucky: Navigate America’s New Lust for Gambling