Hello – I’m Karen Inglis.
I live in London, UK, and I’m a self-published children’s author with over 300,000 print sales across my titles, over 8,000 audiobook sales, around 20,000 paid eBook sales and several foreign rights deals. (I also made over 550 book app sales back in the day.) This ‘info blog’ gives an overview of the process I went through to get my books to market on a modest budget — and I hope it will be of use for anyone considering self-publishing fiction (or indeed non-fiction) using the ‘DIY’ method rather than a third party
My first children’s book The Secret Lake, a time travel mystery adventure for ages 8-11, which came out in September 2011, is an Amazon UK and USA bestseller at the time of writing and continues to be a firm favourite at school visits. It was considered by CBBC for adaption a few years ago and has completed seven foreign rights deals in the last two years, with more in process. As at March 2021 it had sold over 250,000 print copies.
A year after The Secret Lake came Eeek! The Runaway Alien, a fast-paced black and white illustrated chapter book for ages 7-10, about a soccer-mad alien who runs away to Earth during the World Cup. Eeek! was singled out early on by reading charities, teachers, librarians and book reviewers as great for boys and reluctant readers in particular, and has been used in the Get London Reading Campaign.
Next up came Henry Haynes and The Great Escape — a page-turning illustrated chapter book for 6-8 years in which Gordon the gorilla masterminds a zoo escape (you heard it here first!). My latest book for middle grade readers is Walter Brown and the Magician’s Hat (7-9+ years) in which magical mayhem ensues when Walter inherits a top hat with specials powers from his Great-grandpa Horace and discovers that his cat Sixpence is no ordinary cat…
For the younger ones, aged 3-5 yrs, I have two rhyming picture books about a fox: Ferdinand Fox’s Big Sleep — also available as an eBook and on Kindle, and Ferdinand Fox and the Hedgehog as well as a new (non-rhyming) picture book which came out in 2019 The Christmas Tree Wish 🌲😊
Finally, in July 2020, I published The Tell-Me Tree. This is a gentle picture book for ages 4-8 that invites children to share how they are feeling — whether happy, sad or somewhere in between — through conversation, drawings and/or writing.
On the non-fiction side, the first edition of How to Self-publish and Market a Children’s Book came out in September 2018, and was extremely well received and reviewed. The second edition came out on 20th May 2021. Follow this link to view on Amazon.
It is also available as an eBook on Apple and Kobo, and should be available to order from other stores in print from around 1st June 2021.
(You should be able to find over 100 reviews of the first edition if you search Karen P Inglis on Amazon.)
If you know how to self-publish but are looking for marketing support
There is also a ‘sibling’ title ‘How to Market a Children’s Book’ (23 May 2021) for those already versed in how to self-publish and looking only for help with marketing. This contains the whole of the marketing content from the larger book above, including translations and foreign rights. Fully updated for 2021 it is almost as long as the first edition of the joint book!
- View How to Market a Children’s Book on Amazon.
- View the eBook on Apple Books (link will redirect to your country)
- View the eBook on the Kobo store
I do not try to replicate the many fantastic websites and blogs about self-publishing already out there that go into huge amounts of detail, but I do provide links to the ones I found of most use. And I don’t blog regularly – rather I add posts and updates from time to time when something changes or comes up that I think warrants attention – so if you’d like to receive an email when I occasionally post please join my mailing list (I won’t mail often and you can unsubscribe any time!).