Whatever your passion, whatever your tale, it’s time to publish your story and share it with the world.
Becky Ringler, AKA The Love Sensei, is a dating and relationship coach in Kona, Hawaii with a beach wedding service called Simple Kona Beach Weddings. In other words, she’s a love expert, and her passion is to bring people – and keep people – together in love. Becky is also the author of Realing Him in: The Essential Guide to Manifesting Your Perfect Guy.
Why did Becky write a book?
Becky, like so many first-time authors, had the idea for a book floating around for years. As she tells, it, “I had a story to tell, I had gone through a lot of trials and tribulations before I found my perfect partner and husband. For years I had been wanting to write a book to help women so they wouldn’t have to go through the struggles I went through during my dating process. But for some reason or another I kept putting it off.
“It was really when I moved to Hawaii that my life shifted and I knew it was time to write this book. A lot of things came up and made me realize there is no time like the present. Do what you love, do what you’re passionate about. What I realized and discovered was that my whole motivation – everything I do in life – is all about love. So I made a change. I focused my energy on my dating and relationship coaching practice, and I started my beach wedding business. And my whole life now really is about love, and that made it easy to write my book.”
Why self publish?
“I knew I didn’t want to go the traditional publishing route,” says Becky. “I knew I wanted to self publish, but I didn’t want it to look cheesy or like, ‘Oh, that’s a self-published book.’ I wanted it to look sleek and professional, and to really feel romantic. That was important to me. So I took an online publishing course, and they recommended BookBaby. Of course, I did some research before I chose BookBaby, but they seemed like the obvious choice as soon as I did my research. They have so many things that make it easy.
“BookBaby really is a complete package, and you can customize that package. You can pick just one or two things, or you can have the whole shebang: they provide design processes, they’ll distribute your book to all these different channels…
“In fact what I love the most, as a self-published author, is that readers can order my book through the regular channels – or a library, or a college bookstore can order my book like they would any other book. So there’s no downside to being self-published, because my book’s available. On top of that, BookBaby really helped me get the design right inside. I was very picky about how I wanted it to look and feel, and BookBaby worked with me until it was exactly how I wanted it.
The production process
“There’s something about the feeling that I had complete control over my book that was amazing and really important for me,” Becky continues. “BookBaby made me feel like an important author to them. In fact, there was a glitch during the production process, and when I wrote an email describing what my issue was and how they could improve it, I got a long, personal email back not only rectifying the issue but also saying I gave them really great feedback and they were going to look at the situation because they are always trying to improve the process for their authors. I felt super valued, and that made me even more confident in the choice I had made.
Marketing her book
“When it comes to marketing,” says Becky, “I’m a real fan of using any online channels that might be available. I personally am a big Facebook user, and when I started writing Realing Him In, I told everyone I know on Facebook I was finally writing my book, and I asked them to tell their friends. Doing something like that keeps you accountable – you have to finish because people are going to call you out and ask you about your book. It also generates excitement, so as your book is ready and as it’s coming out, people will know and they’ll be ready to buy it.
“I kept people abreast of where I was in the publishing and production process, and when I sent my manuscript to BookBaby for them to convert it to eBook and turn it into this beautiful hard copy, I told my Facebook circle what was happening. When the book was released – very appropriately right before Valentine’s Day – I told everyone, ‘Hey, my book’s out! Go tell all your single friends – there’s clearly somebody you know who can benefit from this book.’ That was an effective strategy, and I recommend it. Of course you can use Instagram or Twitter, or wherever your following is. But start to generate excitement early on.
“I also called my hometown newspaper in upstate New York. I thought, ‘This is going to make a really interesting story. I spent my whole life there, now I’m in Hawaii…’ The paper did a full-page spread on my book and what was going on, and that was very exciting. The editor of the paper told me more people should do this type of outreach because the papers are desperate for interesting stories that are exciting. So don’t be shy – contact newspapers, alumni magazines, and other publications that might be associated with you and your life. The other thing you can do is go to local bookstores, see if they have any meetings, they’re always looking for local authors.
Whatever your passion, whatever the story you have to tell, Becky’s advice is to tell your story and share it with the world. “Maybe you’re a chef and you’ve got a ton of recipes or you’re a photographer and you just want to share your gift of photography, or you have a great fiction story – or nonfiction story – to tell. Do it, just get going, and BookBaby’s self-publishing process will make the rest of that journey super easy. I am so glad I did it!
“Don’t waste any time, just get going, because you deserve it and you deserve to have your special story out into the world.”