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Thursday, January 23, 2014

How Should I #Publish? #Indie or #Traditional {Part 1}

As you've noticed, I'm covering a variety of important topics this week. Many are just part one as I'd have millions of words trying to fit it all in one blog entry. The other truth is that things change, research changes, topics change. I don't know how long each concept will be. Or that they won't be completed and then re-visited alter. I do hope you'll stay tuned and that you'll find at least some of the information useful.

So, in addition to the other stuff I've mentioned, you need to determine how to publish. What is really in your best interest. Of course, if you're desire is to publish indie, then you'll not need the agent posts. I will (later) include what I've found to be some excellent indie author resources as well.

The simple facts -

*Traditional (I'm talking top 10 publishers, not the huge number of ebook publishers found all over the internet)
Many times you get no say in your book cover.
Edits aren't optional (smaller publishers may leave the choice of what edits to accept and reject. Real publishers demand the manuscript be better and suggestions used.)
They take a large percent of your sales.
Your book does sell at a higher price.
They cover formatting costs and in print costs.
They promote their brand

*Indie
Your cover is 100% up to you. (A good cover designer can cost $300+ per cover)
Your editing is 100% up to you. (Most good editors are no less than a penny or two a word. Doesn't seem like much, but if you have a 120,000 word novel, you're spending $1200-$2400 just for editing).
Then you also need a proof reader. Nothing makes an indie author look worse than typos (Yes, even a number of larger publishers have then, as editors and proofreaders are human - but people are harder on indie authors)
You must pay a formatter (or learn, exceptionally well, how to format your own book).
You must incur print costs, if you desire to be in print. Again, this calls for a different cover and a different format.
Your finances are 100% up to you.
Promotion is 100% on you (and promoting can cost a fortune).

That's just the very short beginning of this huge topic. Join me next week for more.

2 comments:

  1. With all of the amenities that come with being able to self-publish today (higher percentage returns, cover choice, lower publishing costs, lower book costs, etc, etc...) there still is one thing it doesn't have over traditional publishing, that is assessment. As a writer with a reputable publisher standing behind me backing me up, it has done wonders for my writing self-esteem in the sense that I have had an expert appraise my work, and that sits very well with book selling outlets. Regardless of whether you have an agent or not, having that publisher review your work and accept it places you above other writers who have chosen the route of indie or self-publishing. It doesn't necessarily make my writing better, but I do have a reputable force vouching for it.

    And of course there is the print costs and the marketing. What a headache to have all of that forced upon the writer! At present, my marketing consists of whether or not I feel up to pushing my work (which all authors should want to do) because my publisher is out there marketing their investment. And they are, of course, handling the prints and having them shipped out to the major book stores as well as those select bookstores that choose to purchase a few copies. At present I have chosen to do a grassroots campaign, taking advantage of my being a local author, something many local bookstores and clubs love to support. If I can't get through to them I have my publisher to take over.

    That said, as long as a writer is fortunate enough to get a publisher, then you can consider how you want to publish the next book because you've been, for all intents-and-purposes, proven to have the talent it takes to write.

    Please don't misunderstand. Just because a writer chooses to self-publish doesn't mean that they are not excellent writers. It just means that only their word is there to back them up. And aside from what seems common belief among those who are self-published, readers actually do care about who the publisher is. Certainly, a large percentage of them will buy the book if they like the synopsis, that's a given and a proven one at that! But with self-publishing at such an incredible height, readers are very aware now of the means writers use to get their books out there, and in that event, they may wonder about how good the writing may be. Of course with the low costs, they may be willing to take the chance and hopefully find that it was a steal because the writing and story are superb!

    As for pricing through traditional publishers, yes, the price is expensive and that's a downer, but I've always maintained, as a reader, if someone wants to read your story, they'll be willing to pay for it.

    All in all, the most convenient way is self-publishing, but if a writer can submit and get accepted, it might just be worth signing that contract and then choosing if they want to pursue that same avenue afterwards.

    I have written a blog on many topics of writing, but one of my posts has to do with how to submit properly, as in which publisher to submit your work to. http://nicolemaddalodixon.blogspot.com/2013/09/im-starting-my-blog-over-on-attempting.html

    I was fortunate in being selected by my publisher quickly because I figured out just as quickly what sort of book to write and which publisher would be the best option to give me the chance once I submitted.

    I hope my reply was helpful in some way. Thanks for the post--I enjoy the ones that really contribute!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for stopping by, I've mentioned quite a few of those topics in upcoming weekly posts. I hope you'll continue to stop in :-)

    ReplyDelete

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