What is self-publishing? It is a way for authors to get their work published without going down the traditional route of a book publisher. There are many benefits to the author of pursuing this route, but as with everything there are some drawbacks. Initially self-publication was seen as a desperate measure for those that been refused by everybody else and had no other alternative. But today things are far different, even established authors choose the self-publishing route for their new literary volumes.
There has even been a growth in small independent publishers that are far more flexible than the mainstream big boys. According to Amazon, only twenty five percent of their book sales come from the main five publishers, while independent sales cater for just under fifty percent. Before you go down the route of releasing the book yourself, there are some factors that you should consider and, as we have already touched on, there are pros and cons. In this blog we highlight the benefits of self-publishing, but also the drawbacks.
Often this method is the quickest way to get your manuscript to the market. With the worldwide web today, there is no reason you cannot publish your book as soon as it is written. This tempting carrot can be a disadvantage though, as many fledgling authors rush to get their manuscript published. Every manuscript needs to be proofread and then edited, and this takes time. It is a good idea that a third party does this for you also, the author of a manuscript quite often does not see the mistakes that he wrote in the first place. All this needs to be balanced against the typical year and a half it takes one of the top five publishers to get around to publishing your manuscript.
If you self-publish then you are the master of your own destiny, and it gives you far better control over the appearance and content. Being published by a main publishing house you have to play by their rules. And this is not just following their rules and regulations that are set out in stone, they have many departments that your text will have to satisfy. These include designers, marketers and editors. But self-publishing gives you total control every step of the way, and not just the content element. It includes the format, the text and the artwork.
If you are publishing a book for the very first time you will have very little say with the big publishing houses over the royalty percentage they offer. The big publishing houses know how desperate you are to get your work published and will take advantage, some even only offer ten or fifteen percent of the sale price. Compare this with self-publishing on Amazon, where you receive seventy percent of every book you sell.
Another major factor in independent publication is the ownership rights for your work. With self-publishing you retain all your own rights including TV, comic books, stage productions and film. In part two of this blog we look at more advantages of indie publishing can give you.