After re-reading Chris Northern’s post online at the kindle boards website, I have discovered that he raised an interesting point; namely, that we should be more than willing to cut the slack if the person has a limited budget. Although He and I have other issues, I realized that was part of a greater idea i.e., on whether someone should publish their novel with a limited budget or wait until there is something better for him. I noticed that the authors who are desperate to make a quick buck do not care about this grand concern, but there are many other ones that do.
The bigger question is, how limited is your budget?
If you do not have any sense of artistic taste or friends in the field of Graphic Arts (which I used for my cover design), then certainly should not publish anything whatsoever. Readers look for something ‘flashy’ and ‘dazzling’ that really appeals to their eyes. Lacking the resources and the knowledge to make a half-way decent book cover that covers the novel’s ideals is not going to help you, especially when the cover art is a D-I-Y. Your best bet is to make connections with people who know how to do it.
What about formatting? Doesn’t that make a difference? Duh. If you are going to format the book to look like a legal contract or a HS Research paper, then you are definitely going to lose out on the readership arena. Although I would like to think better of Self-Publishing, the biggest problem occurs when readers become disappointed in the way the book is written and how it becomes presented. Regardless if the book is hard copy or even e-book, the gist of the book is not going to make a difference.
Ultimately, the answer to the question rests on where you stand in relations to the other aspects of Self-Publishing. Can you format your MS into Word or PDF well? Are you good with graphic design? If you are not doing well with any of those type of business ventures, then don’t try entering the field until you put your book into the hands of a professional who will make your book look sell-able. At least you will save yourself from any public embarrassment.