Photo by Alex Herzog
I started thinking about all the different sides of self publishing for future blog posts and thought general mindset should be addressed. Some of you are straight up kooks when talking about your photos and books and zines. This needs to stop. We all have musician friends. We don’t wanna hear about your “projects”. We just want to be inspired when hearing the final product. So hurry up. Same for your zine, every page is rad or every page sucks. But really every page is rad and nothing sucks because you did it. Just don’t tell me about it 10 times before you even started.
Disclaimer: Google and Youtube are littered with either numbers in the titles or “how-to”. So I am adopting this style of title-ing in hopes of more viewership. I think with numbers in the titles, the viewer will assume it is a list which means it is a quick read. This one will be.
3 Rules for Self Publishing
Rule No. 1 – Don’t be lazy.
This rule could also be called, “Don’t be a Baby”. Every one has these books they wanna make. You are either going to have some one else publish it which means go out into the world and find someone to publish it. Or, you’re going to self publish it. And that means learning about Photoshop and Indesign and all the different printing processes. “But I don’t know Indesign,” is something I hear a lot. I reply every time, “Do the Youtube tutorials, it’s free. That’s how I learned.” And when they email me 100 questions and I ask, “Did you do the tutorials?” They say no and then I delete and block all their emails, dms, and texts for life. If I see them in person, violence may occur. JK, just stop blowing up my inbox with laziness.
Rule No. 2 – Don’t be scared.
Pick out 20 photos, find copy machine, copy the photos. Fold and staple the pages together. Give what you just made to the nearest person. There, you made a zine and someone owns it. Repeat this exercise 100 times or until you’re over yourself. The number 1 fear of self publishing I think is fear of criticism. And you can say that this is the number 1 fear for doing anything. If you’re stressed about people seeing your work and hating it, then you need to re-think what your doing. If you are not enjoying yourself then you need to be doing something else.
Rule No. 3 – No one cares.
I understand the importance of making a living doing what you love to do, but that is called entrepreneurship and a whole different topic. If you are just trying to make a book, no one cares. To me this is liberating and now I can just go do it. So you can now just go do it. I am bringing this up because I see people struggling with ideas and concepts, etc. Usually over thinking it. Free yourself from that stress. No one cares. The epicness of books and zines is you can take it or leave it. You can cherish it or leave it on the street for some one else. When you can enjoy this cycle of life, it is easier to participate in it. If you do wanna spend a lot of time and try to win some kind of first place prize for your book or zine, go ahead. If you wanna spend no time on it and make it sloppy, that’s fine too. Do it. Either way, we don’t want to hear about it because we don’t care. Maybe you can make us care after we see it and decide we like it or not. But not before.