Name: Jim Bailey
Book Title: The End of Healing
Genre: Medical fiction
Publisher: The Healthy City
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Thank you for your time in answering our questions about getting published. Let’s begin by having you explain to us why you decided to become an author and pen this book?
Author: I’ve always wanted to write a novel. After college I enrolled in a graduate writing program but realized I didn’t have a story to tell at that point in my life. I changed course, went to medical school, got my master’s in public health, and became a physician and health services researcher. Over the past two decades, I’ve published many scientific papers on how our health system impacts patients. There’s a wealth of these papers about the problems in healthcare, but the general public doesn’t read them and most people have no idea of the causes or the extent of these problems. People learn best through stories, so I decided to write a novel that would allow the reader to journey into the medical world and see it through the eyes of a young doctor.
Is this your first book?
With this particular book, how did you publish – traditional, small press, Indie, etc. – and why did you choose this method?
Author: Indie press. It took ten years to write The End of Healing. I decided to publish through The Healthy City, a small business I started several years ago for health education, study tours, and consulting. By the time I found an interested publisher we
Can you tell us a little about your publishing journey? The pros and cons?
Author: Pros: I was able to publish my book as soon as it was ready, and I enjoyed making decisions about the content, title, and cover. Cons: it’s a huge amount of work, a steep learning curve, and it will cost money. You’re responsible for the book design, formats, price, distribution, marketing, PR, and more. I hired professionals (editor, typesetter, book designer, lawyer, accountant, PR people, etc.) to get the job done.
What lessons do you feel you learned about your particular publishing journey and about the publishing industry as a whole?
Author: The biggest challenge with publishing through an Indie press is marketing. You have to be prepared to put a lot of time and effort into selling your book if you want to have any chance of getting readers. And marketing fiction is an art unto itself. My advice, find the best agent, marketing consultant, and publicist you can find, and find ones with proven track records who really believe in your book.
Would you recommend this method of publishing to other authors?
Author: Yes, without hesitation. But go in with your eyes open. Indie publishing offers the author unparalleled creative license, but you must be ready to learn and take on all the jobs of a savvy publisher as well as an author, and that is no easy task.
What’s the best advice you can give to aspiring authors?
Author: Don’t give up. If you have a story to tell, perfect it, make sure you have done your story justice, and when it is ready, shout it from the rooftops without apology, fear or shame.