12 Steps Up The Self Publishing Mountain


My “Thought for Today” post from 31 May (seen above) has inspired me to write about my journey up the self publishing mountain:

Step 1 Lourdes June 2012 – Going to confession in Lourdes, I shared some of my journey with a priest.  He told me “Use the strength you have gained from your experiences to help others.”  The seed for my memoir was thus planted.

Step 2  Soon afterwards, I bought a copy of Woman and Home magazine, which included a memoir writing competition – deadline 31 October 2012.  I start writing.

Step 3  I do not win said competition but keep on writing…

Step 4  In early 2014, I submit my work to published author Sue Leonard, who proof read my first three chapters and book outline.  “You need to tell people who you are,” she suggested.  My memoir had begun with a pilgrimage to India in 2003, so I journey back to my early life and continue writing.

Step 5  I add to my story throughout 2014.

Step 6  I re – submit my writing to Sue Leonard in early 2015.  “Your writing has greatly improved,” she tells me.  She gives me advice on submission to publishers and agents.

Step 7  I write to a number of publishers and agents.  Sadly, there are no takers.

Step 8  “Why don’t you self publish?” a literary agent suggests.

Step 9  I book a place on a self publishing weekend.  One of our tutors is Catherine Ryan Howard who shares LOTS of great self publishing tips on her blog – HERE

I was somewhat starstruck as I had been following her blog for some time.

Step 10 I return home inspired to self publish.

Step 11  In early 2016, I submit my finished memoir to Olive O’Brien of http://www.creativewriting.ie for a structural edit.  I am both shocked and delighted to be told it was a compelling and well written book.

Step 12  Last week, I submitted my book to a publishing lawyer to check for any possible legal issues. I spoke to her this morning. She told me it was a compelling read too!

Steps still to come:

  • A final edit for typos, grammar etc.
  • Employ a designer for the book cover
  • Have my book e – formatted and uploaded to Amazon
  • Market and promote…

I will create a print format in around six months time, when I have gathered enough reviews to add to the inside cover.

My memoir is called “Watching the Daisies – Life Lessons on the Importance of Slow.”

I will keep you posted on its progress…

Thank you for supporting me on my way up the mountain.


  1. Congratulations and thank you for sharing your experience with self-publishing! I love to hear stories of driven, thoughtful writers like you taking the initiative to self-publish! Unfortunately, I feel like there has been a stigma against self-publishing for some time in the literary community (I mean, how derogatory is the idea of a “vanity press”??) but as more and more talented writers choose to take their books into their own hands, the stigma is slipping away. Yay!

    Liked by 1 person

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