In previous installments of this series, I described the four basic methods of publishing your information book – Traditional Publishing, Self-Publishing, Print-on-Demand, and eBook – and wrote at length about the pros and cons of Traditional Publishing. In this article we’ll look in depth at the next method: Self-Publishing.
Self-Publishing is a topic that is near and dear to my heart, because that is the method I chose more than eight years ago when I published my first fiction book. It required a steep learning curve, but became profitable quickly, and in fact, I have since self-published five more books, all of which sold well and continue to sell well.
Here’s what you need to know:
Self-Publishing essentially means that you take on the role of publisher as well as author. And with this new role comes a long list of new tasks, and a whole new set of people that you need to interact with. You are responsible for supervising the book printing, the cover, the layout and artwork, the paperwork for procuring an ISBN number (the number that’s required to create the bar code, so that your book can be sold in retail stores and online), shipping, storage, distribution, and more.
It can be a pretty daunting list.
So why in the world would someone want to take on all that responsibility? Because the list of positives is even longer. Here are a few of the main benefits to Self-Publishing:
1. Guaranteed Publication – 99% of all manuscripts submitted to editors and publishers are rejected. Unless your subject has instant mass appeal, your chances for publishing your informational book are even higher. Instead of trying to please some faceless editor or publisher, why not let the buying public determine if you have a winner or not?
2. Speed – If you want to get a book out quickly, or if you are dealing with time sensitive material, then self-publishing is the way to go. Unlike traditional publishing processes which can take a year or more to complete, a self-published book can go from completed manuscript to physical book in as little as 30 days.
3. Control – Self-Publishing gives you the ability to create your perfect vision exactly as you see it. Cover art, subject matter, tone and feel… it’s all up to you, and no one can overrule your decision. When you work with a traditional publisher, it is a constant negotiation, and the author rarely wins.
4. Money – Samuel Johnson once said, “No man but a blockhead ever wrote, but for money.” If the purpose of your book is to bring in cash, than self-publishing may be your best option. The reason is simple: since you are your own publisher, you get to keep all the money. For example, if I print a book for $2.23, and sell it for $10, the difference – $7.77 – is mine to keep. Contrast that with traditional publishing, where royalties can often measured in pennies.
When I released my first self-published children’s adventure, I generated more profit in the first few months than other authors I know generated in years. And I did it not because I sold more books, but rather because I made far more profit on each book that I did sell.
Self-Publishing is not for everyone. It takes an entrepreneurial mindset and a love of learning new things beyond just authoring a book. Yet, in many cases, it can be the fastest, more profitable way to get your book to market.
Understanding all of your publishing options certainly brings you one step closer to a successful book. But nothing happens until you can interest people in buying it. So what should you do next? What can you do to entice people to try your book? These are exactly the questions I’ve spent the last 10 years researching, and you can find out the answers by visiting me at http://www.FictionSecrets.com. Download a 30-page report and receive a 5-day eCourse covering this subject.
Kevin Franz is a successful fiction author and online marketer. For more than twenty years he has made his living putting words to paper, and he has helped thousands create their first written works. He is currently showing internet marketers how to incorporate the techniques of great fiction into their online sales efforts. You can find the details on his blog – http://www.kevinfranz.wordpress.com.