Self-Publishing and Author Platform Workshops – January 24, 2015

WorkshopTestimonialTwo workshops. One day. One happy author.

January 24, 2015

Smyrna Community Center, Room #5

Smyrna, Georgia

Part 1: Self-Publishing: Perks, Pitfalls and Process (see description below)
Time: 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
For: Writers of all levels and genres (fiction and non-fiction) who are considering self-publishing or weighing their publishing options
Cost: $80

Part 2: Starting out Right: Building your Author Platform
Time: 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
For: Traditional and self-publishing authors who want to understand the basics of author platforms, mistakes to avoid, and how to connect with your audience before and after publication.
Cost: $40

Combined Package – Self-Publishing AND Author Platform – $105 (save more than 10% on both)

To register:

About the Workshops

Part 1: Self-Publishing: Perks, Pitfalls and Process

“Can I talk to you about self-publishing?”

I get this question often from my fellow writers, usually when they have completed or nearly completed a book, and are thinking about the next steps. They’ve heard that self-publishing is the road to riches, or that it’s career suicide. Maybe self-publishing is a sign of failure as an author, or perhaps it’s simply the new “slush pile” for editors seeking new talent. So how can you tell if self-publishing is the right choice for you and your book? And if it is the right choice, where do you start?

This 3-hour workshop is designed to help writers of all levels and genres understand the various paths to self-publishing, and how self-publishing fits into the rapidly changing publishing climate. At the end of the workshop, writers will be equipped to determine whether and what kind of self-publishing is a viable choice for them, and have a publishing action plan in place. We’ll discuss your individual goals for your writing, as well as the many options open to new and experienced writers alike.

By the end of this workshop you will be able to:

  • Understand (briefly) how the publishing industry has been transformed in the past several years and what it means for authors
  • Articulate goals for your current project, and your career as a writer
  • Make an informed decision about whether self-publishing is a good choice for you as an author, as well as for each writing project individually
  • Set measures for success in self-publishing and create a plan for reaching those goals
  • Follow step-by-step instructions to successful self-publication
  • Begin the process of publishing your own book the right way, or marketing yourself and your work to agents and publishers

You will also learn:

  • The difference between self-publishing, indie, hybrid, small-press and traditional publishing
  • The benefits and drawbacks of the various publishing options, including self-publishing
  • The importance of genre in writing, publishing and marketing your book
  • What a “target audience” is and how to find and reach yours
  • The ins and outs of the Amazon KDP platform and how to optimize it in your favor
  • How much you should expect to invest in the launch of a newly self-published book
  • Major mistakes to avoid when publishing your own book


Part 2: Author Platform Basics

What is an author platform and why do you need one? As the name implies, the platform is a virtual “stage” from which authors can reach out to readers, agents, and potential publishers. Your platform is your voice in the online world, the primary place where readers will learn about you and your books, recommend you, and interact with you. The platform is also a place to connect on a new level with friends, fans and other writers.

Not only is a platform essential for self-published and independent authors marketing their own books, but traditional publishers increasingly expect authors to establish their platforms well in advance of publication (and sometimes before signing a book deal!)

After this 1.5 hour workshop, you will be able to:

  • Understand the purpose of a platform and the principles for creating a strong online/print brand identity
  • Develop an author persona with a consistent voice to draw readers to your writing
  • Create a basic author platform to support your efforts in EITHER independent or traditional publishing
  • Learn how blogging helps you become a better writer and can be the best free advertising for your books
  • Set up a basic social media strategy for your book, including which social media outlets are best for you and your books
  • Learn many free and cheap ways to advertise and promote your books and your brand

Registration fees include all workshop materials.

What people are saying…

“Great tool for understanding the publishing options currently available to authors, weighing them against one another and aligning them with the goals for your writing career.”
~Chris N., Self-Publishing Workshop, November 2014

“Creditable presentation by an author who knows through personal, successful experiences about the complex worlds of self and traditional publishing.”
~Participant, Self-Publishing Workshop, November 2014

“Fantastic information presented in an entertaining and engaging manner!”
~Participant, Self-Publishing Workshop, November 2014

Register for either or both workshops here: You can also sign up for my writing and publishing email list here:


I’m M.J. (Manda) Pullen, an author and mom in the Atlanta, Georgia area. I blog about writing, publishing, motherhood, health, psychology and whatever else strikes me in the moment.

My books include The Marriage Pact series, a trilogy of funny, semi-realistic Contemporary Romance/Women’s Fiction novels coming Fall 2015 from Thomas Dunne/St. Martin’s Press in association with Macmillan Entertainment. If you enjoyed this entry, please follow along or join my email list.  Thanks for reading!


MJ Pullen

M.J. Pullen is a Distracted Writer and the mom of two boys in Roswell, Georgia, where she is absolutely late for something important right now. Her books include quirky romantic comedies and playful women's fiction. Join her Distracted Readers newsletter list for updates, free content, giveaways and more.

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