Instructor Lowry McFerrin
Instructor Lowry McFerrin

Self-Publishing in the 21st Century

Saturday – October 10, 2009, 10 am – 4 pm

You’ve plotted, planned, revised, agonized over, edited and re-written three books just to finish one. Still, you can’t find an agent or publisher to carry your project forward. But you don’t want to self-publish, because a “real” writer… a SERIOUS writer… wouldn’t dream of resorting to that. Well, not necessarily. Did you know that many notable writers self-published:

  • Edgar Rice Burroughs: Tarzan
  • Benjamin Franklin: Poor Richard’s Almanack
  • Beatrix Potter: The Tale of Peter Rabbit
  • Henry David Thoreau: Walden
  • Mark Twain: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
  • James Joyce: Ulysses
  • Richard N. Bolles: What Color is Your Parachute

. . .and scores of others, including many of your contemporaries (Dave Eggers, Jeff Greenwald, Louise Hay), some of whom got noticed and eventually picked up by major publishing houses because of their self-published books.

In today’s world of publishing, the advent of the Internet (not to mention the other mind-boggling computer advances) has revolutionized the options for publishing, PR, and marketing. Self-publishing is no longer a dirty word; it’s simply another way, as viable and as valuable as any other, to get your work out into the world.

So how do you go about it without making major mistakes?

During Self-Publishing in the 21st Century, we’ll discuss manuscript preparation, book layout & design, cover design, printing methods (including print-on-demand), binding choices, ISBN, marketing and distribution, fulfillment services and the associated costs. The workshop covers the role of new media marketing opportunities such as social networks, websites and other online marketing tools for self-publishing writers.

Lowry McFerrin learned to love the smell of printers’ ink as a teenager while working for his family-owned, San Francisco-based lithography company. He has served as VP of Distributor Sales for a barcode label manufacturer and today is President/CEO of ProForma Mactec Solutions, a printing and marketing services provider. In addition to supplying these services to publishers such as Lonely Planet Press, Travelers’ Tales, Hunter House Books, Birdcage Books, and Left Coast Writers, Lowry has helped numerous authors self-publish and market their books.

A successful self-publishing journey begins with a small investment in the basics.

Space is limited. To reserve a place please respond by return email to

Directions will follow.

Comments from past workshop participants:

I…wanted to personally let you know how much I enjoyed the class and your honesty about the whole process. I can see I have a lot of work ahead of me, but it’s better than watching re-runs all night!—Dorothy C., Writer

What fun to be your student! I really learned a lot and your guidance will be invaluable as I (cautiously) make the leap from the wee chair to the brave new frontier of cyber-self-pub, or whatever of the dizzying combinations I end up choosing. It did just what I wanted it to: it gave me a good overview of the options and a sense of the pitfalls for various kinds of “do-it-yourselfing”.—Joanna B., Teacher/Writer

Very, very useful and inspiring! All my questions were answered.—TC, Author