You must read a modern day fairytale

Welcome to Marissa Bañez’s WOW! WOMEN ON WRITING tour of Hope and Fortune, a modern day fairytale. Marissa has also honored us with a guest post  about whether self-publishing is worth it. Here’s Marissa: first her colorful and playful book cover and her guest post.

Is Self-Publishing Worth It?

            For some, getting their story in a published book form is a cathartic exercise.  Self-publishing is worth it for them as a matter of self-fulfillment.  For others, they just want to be able to say to family and friends that they’ve published a book. The return on their investment of time, energy and resources in self-publishing is irrelevant because their purpose is not to sell the book but rather to simply give it as a gift or to leave a family legacy of sorts.

For still others, they have a compelling need to spread their ideas to a broader audience.  Because they can’t find anyone to publish their work, they must consider self-publishing. Self-publishing is not free or even cheap.  Depending on the type of book, word count, and other things, self-publishing could cost hundreds, if not thousands of dollars.

There are several options, but this link (with which I have no connection whatsoever) gives a fairly good idea of what you have to consider in terms of financial costs: This link includes costs of services for editing, marketing, etc. Unfortunately, many other self-publishing plans are just to get the book in physical form with no help in getting it to the readers.  None of the plans address the less tangible additional costs that you must expend – time, labor, stress, self-doubt, etc.

Of course, online retailers like Amazon abound but simply listing your book on online sites, without more, doesn’t equate to sales.  The online marketplace is very crowded and very noisy, and competition for the purchasing dollar is fierce.  You must make yourself seen and heard – which may require a promoter/publicist /influencer (i.e., more money) – but still, sales aren’t guaranteed.

Another option is consignment with a brick-and-mortar store.  Some may allow you to place a few copies on their shelves for a certain period.  In exchange, they will take 40-60% of your sales price.  You must monitor the inventory and retrieve or forfeit unsold copies.
I recently discussed this with a published poet who said that he’d never say never to self-publishing.  For me, it’s a hard “no.”  Although a publisher has put out two of my books, I still must do a lot of the time-consuming, soul-sucking, and money-draining work necessary to advertise, market, and sell my books.  What turned me against self-publishing is a repeated refrain from bookstores: “We don’t carry self-published books.”  It’s hard enough dealing with a non-self-published book; I don’t want to take on more difficulties by self-publishing something that no one will read.

So, the answer to the question is dependent your personal goal and what you are willing to endure to achieve it, with eyes (and wallet) wide open.


Book Summary

Hope and Fortune is a modern-day fairytale, featuring multicultural, multiracial (e.g., Filipina, African-American, Latina, Asian, Muslim, etc.), multigenerational, and multigender (including a boy) fairies of different shapes and sizes who help a sad little child who has lost her way to find her path.  Each fairy represents an ideal – Hope, Innocence and Wonder, Truth and Virtue, Generosity and Kindness, Strength and Courage, Respect and Dignity, Confidence, Imagination, Happiness, Beauty, Wisdom and Intelligence, and Love and Friendship. Although the protagonist is a little girl, the life advice given by the fairies is non-gender-specific and could resonate with anyone facing a difficult situation at any point in her/his/their life.

Publisher: Black Rose Writing

ISBN-10: 1685131174

ISBN-12: 978-1685131174

Print copy pages: 46 pages

Purchase a copy of Hope and Fortune on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and You can also add this to your GoodReads reading list.


About the Author

A first-generation immigrant to the U.S. from the Philippines, Marissa Bañez is a graduate of Princeton University and a lawyer licensed to practice in New York, California, and New Jersey. She has published legal articles for the prestigious New York Law Journal and the American Bar Association, but her true passion is in her children’s stories. She currently lives in New York City with her husband and daughter, whose childhood was filled with many original stories and puppet shows made up entirely by her mom. In her free time, Marissa likes to travel, design and make clothes, cook, binge-watch Star Trek shows and Korean dramas, and occasionally strum a guitar.

She is currently working on her second book, Hues and Harmony (How the Singing Rainbow Butterfly Got Her Colors), a story about mixed or multiracial children, self-discovery, and respect for others as told through the life and adventures of a caterpillar. It is scheduled for publication on July 20, 2023.

You can find her online:



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