Eugene Wells is the author of The Decaf Diet: Is Caffeine Making You Fat? in which he examines the role of caffeine in the obesity epidemic. In his book, Wells concludes that caffeine drives overeating in a number of ways and proposes two strategies for dealing with this effect.
How did you come to self-publish? Did you try to get published
I decided to self-publish after reading some horror stories about authors who go through traditional publishing houses, give up the rights to their works, and receive no support from the publisher post-publication. Self-publishing appealed to me because I was able to stay in control of the project.
What self-publishing service did you use? Happy with the service?
I used amazon’s CreateSpace and Digital Text Platform. I am happy with both services. Publishing with amazon is fast and the support is helpful and available. I was most impressed by the CreateSpace Community forum, in which self-publishers help each other get through the process. That forum is a vast resource for new self-publishers.
What avenues have you taken to market the book? Have you gotten
reviews, interviews, TV, print media coverage?
I thought my desktop publishing software was hard to learn, but it doesn’t even come close to the effort it takes to promote a book. So far I have sent out 5 review copies to diet and fitness websites and blogs whose owners expressed interested in reviewing my book. I have sent out some query letters for reviews and interviews in my local print media – some just a few moments ago – but I have not heard back yet.
I also just launched my blog – http://lastingleanness.blogspot.com/ – where readers can sample the first 50 pages of my book and read health-related posts. I am thinking I will start posting reviews of some select diet books myself, my own excluded of course.
What drove you to write this particular book?
I wrote The Decaf Diet because I see a need for exploring caffeine’s role in weight gain, given caffeine’s high rate of usage in America and America’s concurrent weight problem. I have been reading books and research studies in the health and nutrition genre since I was in high school because it has always interested me, but I never thought that I would write a book. I could not find a health book that examines caffeine’s role in weight gain in depth, and I had read a good amount of research implicating caffeine as fattening, so I decided to write this book.
What’s your writing regimen? Any tips for keeping focused?
What I have found works best for me is exercising in the morning and writing in the afternoon and evening. So typically when I’m in the middle of a project I will go out in the morning for a long walk or run, run some errands, and then settle in to write after noon. I find that physical activity helps keep me focused, and I take many breaks to stave off the restlessness that comes with sitting a lot.
Would you self-publish again?
I would self-publish again now that I have a background in formatting for the kindle and the paperback. I have some other ideas I’ve been working on but I’ve put those on hold right now to focus on book promotion. If The Decaf Diet is successful, I’ll almost certainly self-publish again.
Any final words of advice for those looking to self-publish?
I underestimated the importance of having the right page layout software when I started. Although it can be time-consuming to learn, the right software will make a huge difference in the way your finished product looks, so it’s well worth the time. In terms of learning graphic design and page layout software, the best way to do it is the most underrated – reading the manual. YouTube videos are also helpful, as are self-publishing forums such as the CreateSpace Community.