A few months ago my mum gave me a book that had been given to her by my aunt. I don't usually receive books via what we call the family lending chain because my reading habits are completely different. They read historical romance and stories set in the Second World War whereas I read The Edge Chronicles by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell and any thing by Sir Terry Pratchett (just love the Nac Mac Feegle a.k.a. The Wee Free Men).
The reason I'd been given this book was because a woman had knocked on my aunts door with a case full of books, announced she was a local published author and asked if my aunt would make a purchase. In the words of my aunt "thinking good on her, getting out there and doing something," the author made a sale. My aunt sat down for a 'good' read. However she was shocked a book would be published containing so many errors including the duplication of several complete paragraphs. Knowing it was full of errors I searched for the publishers details and discovered the book was self-published. I told my mum and aunt and the response was "oh, that explains it."
I explained that not all self-published books are full of errors. In fact I own a book published by a very large well-known publisher that has several diagrams. Now unfortunately if that author knocks on my aunt's door again she will not make a purchase. That author has lost a possible loyal reader because she did not take the time to ensure the book was the best she could make it. Quality matters. This is why my first planned book, a collection of stories featuring the traditional African character Anansi, is two months behind schedule. I've proof read three times, I've also paid for a professional proof reader/editor to read it. I'm now in the process of editing. Although I'm eager to launch my book onto the eBook market I want my book to be the best it can be. I want to create a loyal fan base and the only way to do this is to create a good quality product. Lastly I also want to prove that a self-published book, in any form does not have to mean poor quality.