I rub shoulders all the time with other indie authors who want to cut all the corners they can in their book’s production, rush it to publication and spend as little money as possible doing so.
I get it.
I was a broke missionary living on support when I published my first few e-books and I got a LOT of help from people with aspects of it I couldn’t do on my own, like editing, proofreading and the cover design.
I’m not knocking asking for favors and paying it forward. I’ve done it, after all.
But many self-published authors fail to realize having a crappy cover they designed themselves (and tend not to think is crappy) might make a potential reader skip over the book and look for something else on Amazon instead.
If the reader can get past the cover but then find your book is poorly edited, they may quit reading it. They may even leave a negative review mentioning how poorly it was edited.
Either way, you’re NOT doing yourself any favors in the long run, and it contributes to the stigma that all self-published authors don’t do a professional job at their craft.
You can either spend money to save time, or you’ll spend time to save money.
If you want your book to be taken seriously, you’re going to have to put some serious investment in it. Not just the money, but getting other people’s expertise involved where yours ends.
Self-publishing is a booming market, yes.
But some niches are getting over saturated and are VERY competitive.
If you’re not going to bother to make your book as excellent as possible then rest assured it will not stand out and rise to the top against the ones by the authors who ARE willing to invest in their design, editing, and not to mention marketing.