There are lots of self-publishing firms out there. Most of them want money upfront, and I wasn’t sure I really dared invest. What I neglected to note was that even publishing for free requires real capital: proofs, postage, copyrights—it all adds up. And if you want to sell at Christmas Bazaars, there’s money for your first bulk order too.
Looking back, I suspect the more expensive firms might have ended up cheaper: Free advertising copies; better author discounts; invaluable help with set-up; and distribution that doesn’t send the book price soaring into the stratosphere.
Lessons learned: More to come.