A low-priced Self-Pub version of How To Think Sideways?

Discount HTTS for the Self-Publishing Writer?
Discount HTTS for the Self-Publishing Writer?

Self-pub has become the way to go if you want to write and make a living at it. The last few years, my self-pub has paid the bills, and my commercial pub hasn’t. Among commercially published writers, I’m not alone. The majority of commercially published novelists are working a “real” job just to survive.

Successful self-pubbed writers are doing better. You can read sites like http://jakonrath.com/ and http://lethalbooks.com/ and those of other self-pubbed writers who are making a full-time living publishing themselves.

If you aren’t a big name, online self-publishing is the new midlist.

This is the thing I wanted to do with Rebel Tales

…but what grew naturally out of improving tech and online markets is a million times better than what I’d planned. Why? Because YOU control your career, and you get to keep all the money. You’re not splitting it with a publisher who takes almost everything, and an agent who takes 15% of what’s left.

Sales of Kindles and Nooks and iPads (and iPhones) are all up, and these are all instant-gratification bookstores you carry around in your pocket. Or purse. Meanwhile, print book sales are falling, and brick-and-mortar bookstores going out of business.

What You Need To Know To Self-Publish

There are two types of knowledge you need in order to self-publish successfully.

The first is the technical stuff—how to get ISBNs, how to format your own book or hire someone to format it for you, how to price it, etc.

You can learn that ANYWHERE.

The second knowledge you need is a thousand times more important. You need to know how to write books worth reading.

I can teach you that.

So I’m putting together a stripped-down, just-for-self-publishers version of HOW TO THINK SIDEWAYS: Career Survival School for Writers.

How To Think Sideways for the Self-Publisher

The objective of this course is to be about half the price and about 60% the size of HTTS, and to give writers who KNOW you want to self-publish:

  • the writing skills you need to succeed at it, without all the Japanese Bowing Etiquette involved in commercial publishing,
  • to give you the contacts you need to publish your own work professionally,
  • and to get you out there doing it.

Lean, mean, focused.

HTTS Self-Pub will contain none of the stuff on query letters or dealing with editors. NOTHING on manuscript formatting for submission. Nothing on how to write a synopsis or an extended editor outline. None of the walkthrough. None of the frills I threw in like first drafts of my novels. Well, maybe ONE first draft.

It also won’t include on-site workgroups.  To keep the price low, I have to cut somewhere, and setting up and maintaining private workgroups is a major pain in the kiester.  You’ll meet lots of folks in the community.  If you want to create a private workgroup via e-mail on on a password section of your blog, you can certainly do that.

HTTS Self-Pub will include:

All the writing lessons, writing techniques, writing checklists, and writing course videos.

You’ll also get full member access to the following Writers’ Boot Camp boards:

  • Eureka HTTS (you can read this board now to discover what students learn from this course)
  • Renegade Marketing
  • Help!
  • Questions About Your Lessons HTTS
  • Writing Discussion HTTS
  • Idle Chatter HTTS
  • The new Resources for Self-Publishers board, which will hook you up with the folks who do professional e-book formatting, packaging, cover art, editing, and copyediting, writing blurbs, any anything else you need to help you succeed.  (If you OFFER these services, contact me now about getting your place on this board.  Currently I have about 2000 active writers in the private community.)

My objective with this course is to create successful professional career writers in the new Yes-You-Can-Live-On-Your-Writing online midlist.

The full course, with the walkthrough and future upgrades and a multitude of other cool things, comes in two speeds (6 month and 12 month)  and three flavors: Single Payment $399, 6 month subscription 69.95/month, and 12 month subscription $37.95/month.  If your dream is to publish commercially, (or if you want the BIG boost in help you’ll get from the Walkthrough upgrade) this is the course you need. 

The stripped-down HTTS Self-Pub will have one speed and one flavor.  6 months, $37.95/month.

If you’re not, no reply is necessary.

If you are, please post a YES. What I’m trying to do here is get a rough level of interest to decide whether setting up the extra site and revamping the course materials is worth my time.

So all I need to know from you now is, are you interested?


If you’re already an HTTS student or HTTS Grad, you’re getting EVERYTHING in the Self-Pub course, PLUS the walkthrough, the private workgroups, and the Walkthrough boards, blogs, etc. Just log in to get the stuff as it goes live.

image_pdfDownload as PDFimage_printPrint Page







178 responses to “A low-priced Self-Pub version of How To Think Sideways?”

  1. Ria Avatar

    I like the idea of a version specifically for self-publishers.

  2. Giana Avatar

    YES. Self-publishing is what I want to do for many reasons, so this is the way to go (especially since is more afordable than the full one).

  3. Christin Lockhart Avatar
    Christin Lockhart


  4. Elizabeth Avatar

    Yes please! 😀 Can’t wait…

  5. Mary L Avatar
    Mary L

    Yes, Holly, I’m interested.

  6. Gothic Queen Avatar
    Gothic Queen

    I would definately be interested. Thanks.

  7. Julie Avatar

    Definite “yes”. Sign me up today.

  8. Carole Weaver-Linsner Avatar
    Carole Weaver-Linsner

    Holly, you are new to me, but I luv ya already.
    tell me more!

  9. Penny Ash Avatar

    I say go for it. If I hadn’t already gone the HTTS route I’d go this one

  10. L. Scribe Harris Avatar

    I’m interested in this course, but not exactly because I’m interested in self-publishing. My biggest problem is cohesive plotting, and I always felt that HTTS might help me with that (I’m a grad of HTRYN), but I couldn’t quite justify the price-tag when there was so much in there I had already studied and worked at. I would definitely be interested in this course for the writing lessons, and would view it somewhat like taking a university course. 🙂

    1. Holly Avatar

      I suspect there are at least a handful of other folks who would look at it in the same light.

  11. MaryBeth Thayer Avatar
    MaryBeth Thayer

    Yes I am interested and very excited to see what this course would be offering. I’ve been off the working grid for 4 months due to complications from a broken tibia which is now resolving itself. Praise God! But in the meantime lost my job and have been going to back to the drawing board to redesign my life. It’s time to follow the dream but I need a trail guide. Count me in!

  12. Asa Avatar

    Yes, yes, yes. Please.

  13. Marsha Prescod Avatar

    Yes.Interested. Though I’d need info on how to convert a word doc to ebook formats. And how to get affordable cover design. I’m in London so would be paying the £ equivalent, presumably via something like paypal???
    I think you could get people like me- on the periphery but receiving emails, and coming to look at your blogs/sites, to publicise it/how you help writers for you on Twitter and on various social network sites. Its the least we can do for all the really helpful, insightful stuff that comes out of your sites. I’ve started doing it already in a small way 🙂

    1. Zach Ricks Avatar

      Like Holly said above, the technical detail-oriented stuff like formatting and getting an ISBN etc. is something you can pick up from a lot of places. I know Scrivener for the Mac will export to an ePub file (for most e-readers) or to Mobi (for the Kindle). I’ve also had a lot of fun playing with Sigil, which is a free ebook creation tool.
      Cover design can be tricky, I’ve been doing that myself for the short story magazine we’ve been putting out at Flying Island Press, and we’ve worked with public domain images, pics we’ve taken ourselves, stock photos from various sources, etc.
      I really believe that self-pub is the future for authors, and if I wasn’t already a part of Holly’s HTTS full class, this would be something right up my alley.

  14. Jenn Avatar

    I think it sounds like I wonderful idea. I have several writer friends who might also be interested in this class. Fab idea, Holly!

  15. Jack St. Croix Avatar
    Jack St. Croix

    Yes you can count me in.

  16. Nina Avatar

    I say set it all up. I would be interested in taking the class in the future when my funds are tighter.

  17. Cheri Avatar

    Yes, I’m interested in the stripped down version. I’ve already self-published once, so I know the basics, but in the ever-changing technology I am sure I would get more info from your course. As I write this, I am preparing to self-publish another.

  18. Marilyn Avatar

    I signed up and paid for HTTS, but I kept having trouble logging in to get lessons, so gave up. (I also had trouble organizing all the files by lesson.)

    What I got of it was really interesting, and I’m definitely interested in the self-publishing angle. But I don’t want to pay for all the how-tos and then not be able to access them.

    1. Holly Avatar

      Margaret and I are in the process of upgrading all the course software. We’re hoping this will help everything work better with browser issues.

  19. Ali Luke Avatar

    I’ve already got HTTS — but I’d have probably bought it sooner and more eagerly if it’d had a self-pub flavour!

    1. Holly Avatar

      Make sure you head in and get the most recent additions to the course, especially the Walkthrough. I’m adding everything I learn from publishing myself as I go.

  20. Susan Russell Avatar
    Susan Russell

    I’m currently about two-thirds through HTTS and almost all the way through the first draft of my first novel. The course is amazing and exactly what I needed! I downloaded the John Locke book you recommended and found it interesting. The problem I see is that this seems like a better bet for people like your (or even people who have less commercially published stuff than you, but at least a few books). Not so good for newbs like me who no one has ever heard of. I think one of the great parts of HTTS is that you went through pretty much the same process your students will go through and we get to learn from your hindsight. In this case, a widely published novelist getting into self-pub is a whole different ball of wax from a newb getting into self-pub. I’m not sure if you’re interested in learning those lessons, perhaps by picking someone out of obscurity and going along for the ride… If not, it would be a good idea to make it clear that your starting place is far different.
    One not-exactly-related question: Is there a discount for frustrated nurses from difficult family backgrounds including abusive ex’es on HTTS, etc.? (I’m not asking for me — I am already a happy HTTS student, but I have a friend who’d love to quit nursing [after 20 years] and try writing….)

  21. Lee Edward McIlmoyle Avatar

    Money’s super tight right now, but I AM intrigued, and would love to learn how to sell my stories without signing my rights away to some desperate publishing dinosaur that can’t be bothered to read my books and actually decide if they enjoy them or not. So I can’t sign up immediately, but I would like to see this program up and running when I can afford to spare a few bucks.

  22. Selena Wolff Avatar

    I’d love to have the opportunity! I say YES!

  23. Amanda Avatar

    I would be interested too. Wanted to do the other but too expensive right now for me.

  24. Jim Miller Avatar
    Jim Miller

    I think it’s a great idea, Holly. I can’t afford it, but I think you should go for it. I am already in the HTRYN course and I will admit that I am definitely getting my money’s worth. It is a complete course and it demonstrates just how detailed your courses are. I am amazed at the amount of work that must have gone into designing HTRYN. And based on that, I am sure this new course would be full of all the necessary details and not just some kind of superficial coverage of self-publishing. Good luck,

  25. Laura Leary-Eitniear Avatar
    Laura Leary-Eitniear

    I am interested, though expensive, I’d like to move forward with my novel. Thanks.

  26. Glenda Poulter Avatar

    I am interested, but the money is still a bit steep for me. I’d have to juggle the budget, but I’m seriously considering self-pub for my next novel.

  27. Carl Peters Avatar

    Yes, interested, but no promises.

  28. Tracey Bourgoyne Avatar
    Tracey Bourgoyne

    Yes, I would be greatly interested in this option.

  29. LucyPerk Avatar

    I’m interested. Go for it

  30. LotusblossomK Avatar

    Sounds really good, I would be interested, thanks

  31. Kathleen Avatar

    Yes! It’d be right up my little self-pubbing alley. I love your novels, and I love your teaching.

  32. Katie Bryan Avatar

    I’d be interested if the price came down a bit. Great concept.

  33. Emily M Casey Avatar

    I’ve already gone through HTTS and don’t want to pay for duplicate material. I’m interested in the self-pub stuff, but won’t pay that much for it when I already have the writing stuff.

  34. Amy Avatar

    Yes! I think it’s a great idea and would be very interested!

  35. Dagmar Avatar

    I would be very interested, too. I liked the HTTS couse very much and actually I’m writing my first non-fiction book – and I want to self-publish trough Amazon Kindle direct publishing.
    Please excuse my poor English, I write from Germany.
    Best regards

  36. Sherilyn Avatar

    Math before noon proves I’m human? Are you sure?
    I’d be very interested, although the money would still be a challenge.

  37. Danielle Meitiv Avatar

    I think it’s a great idea. Self-pub is here to stay and to learn about it from an experienced pro would be invaluable. Great idea and good luck!

  38. PD Singer Avatar

    Yes. I’m published but would like to be more efficient with my writing.

  39. Monica Avatar

    Yes, I would be interested in the lower price. The current price is way out of my price range my half price would be a lot better.

  40. Ron Canepa Avatar

    Yes, interested.

    Also, suggestion: You could use something like kickstarter to ensure you have enough (paid) interest in the course before you go putting it together.

  41. Deborah Robson Avatar

    This format would fit my needs better than the full course. Whether I would participate would depend on timing. I’m inundated with nonfiction deadlines that are getting in the way of the fiction!

  42. Rick Rigdon Avatar
    Rick Rigdon

    yes, I’d be interested

  43. Donna Avatar

    YES, a streamlined version of HTTS is very interesting. You have a keen eye on trends, Holly, and this would make a fantastic offering.

  44. Riley Avatar

    Yes, I’d be interested.

  45. Bonni Sansom Avatar

    I would be interested in a workshop for self pub.

  46. Firestorm Avatar

    Yes… a whole lot of Yes! I’ve already taken HTTS, but I think the info in this specialty area may be vital for the direction I want my career to go.

  47. Maureen Avatar

    I am interested. Don’t think I can afford it for about a year though. Totally want to self publish… Love getting your letters. Worried I will miss this thing that sounds perfect because it is just so tight right now…

    1. KittyB78 Avatar

      I’m interested, but I agree here too. With the failing economy we’ve been scrimping for the last five years. Is there a way to maybe cut the price more?

      Hopeful KittyB78.

  48. Duane Avatar

    Yes, this is exactly what I would want, as I don’t have the time to commit to formal class.

  49. Noelle Avatar

    Yes, I’d be interested. It’s still quite a bit of money for me, but definitely more affordable.

    1. Stacey Riley Avatar
      Stacey Riley

      I agree with Noelle’s comment above about pricing. Self pub is the most viable option for me at the moment.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x