The Author’s Switch – CARMA Spence

The Author’s Switch – CARMA Spence

The Authorneer’s Journey, Part 6: Pre-Publishing [The Author Switch Classic]

April 28, 2021

What happens between the time the manuscript is complete, and the book is published? Pre-publishing! That is the phase of The Authorneer’s Journey I talk about in today’s episode of The Author’s Switch. This phase is where you get your cover and the interior of your book designed.

Runtime: 20 minutes, 59 seconds

Transcript for Episode 13: The Authorneer's Journey, Part 6: Pre-Publishing
NOTE: Due to some ad libbing, this may not be an exact transcript.

Hello! And welcome to The Author’s Switch, the podcast dedicated to helping aspiring and new authors turn on The Author’s Switch to success in their minds. This is lucky Episode number 13. If you missed any past episodes – especially episodes 3, 5, 7, 9, and 11 in October, December, January, February, and March – go to to find them.

I’m your host Carma Spence, author of five books, including the award-winning and bestselling Public Speaking Super Powers and the now in pre-order second edition of Home Sweet Home Page.

You may be wondering why I emphasized catching those odd-numbered episodes of this podcast. Well, in those episodes I talked about the first through fifth steps in the Authorneer’s Journey, and in this episode, I’m going to share step number six. These episodes are part of an eight-episode series on the Authorneer’s journey.

I assure you that each episode can stand on its own and you will gain valuable information about the various parts of the writing, publishing, and marketing-a-book journey from each episode individually. However, they will help you more effectively if you listen to them all because they will give you a more holistic view of what goes into making a living as an author.

Now on to Part six: Pre-Publishing!

So what do I mean by pre-publishing? I’ve talked a bit about this before in earlier episodes of this series, but this is the phase where you really get the work done. This is where you get your cover finalized. Your content edited and designed. Then proofed again. All the pieces of your book come together in a beautiful package ready for your readers to enjoy!

Now, if you were working with a publisher, they would handle all that, but as a self-published indie author … you’re in charge of all this stuff. So what do you do? Well, here’s how I did it for my latest book, Home Sweet Home Page. And if you’re listening to this episode, I recommend you stop and to check out the video version, because I’m going to share some slides because this information is quite visual.

First, let’s talk about the cover. With Public Speaking Super Powers and even the first edition of Home Sweet Home Page, I designed the cover. And I’m happy with the results. However, I was really struggling with coming up with a next-level design for the second edition, so I decided to hire a designer and the easiest way to do that on a budget is with

This is not the only way, but it is an easy and affordable way. For a flat fee, you run what is called a design contest and designers compete to design your book cover. Look at some of the amazing designs I got. And these are only some of the ones I liked the best. There were more. It was really tough whittling them down to a few.

While the contest is running, you can get help deciding by running a poll. Share the poll in social media and get feedback on the designs you’re getting. This is a great way to get your following excited about your forthcoming book, as well, by the way.

After your contest is over, you finalize the design with your designer and receive the files. Now there are some potential pitfalls I want you to be aware of when it comes to timing your cover design contest:

* If you can wait until the interior is done, do so