Quality and Control in Self-Publishing

A very informative article was recently published outlining one author’s success self-publishing over traditional publishing, most notably in terms of higher net royalties on book sales. In fact, the case study recorded significantly higher royalties on a lower quantity of book sales along that self-publishing route.

The book pricing advantages of self publishing is no stranger to this blog, nor the increasingly successful population of authors who follow that path. But this particular article also mentioned that writers should never have to pay for publishing upfront.

Unfortunately, I’ve seen authors who have been pulled in by that concept, but end up publishing an often poorly produced book sold back to them at highly marked-up costs. (Publishers are businesses and need to make money, after all.) So that model really only puts poorly produced books right back in the hands of authors, not readers.

The successful alternative does involve upfront publishing fees, which opens a direct contract between authors and publishers including quality, professional production on books that are competitively sold in the marketplace, where readers buy books. Make sure your self-publishing choice includes those things like cover design, interior formatting, and full distribution. Also, as I’ve mentioned before – and the significance here is worth the redundancy – make sure your publisher offers pricing flexibility (control) and 100% royalties on book sales.

I hope that helps. Have fun and keep writing…

Karl Schroeder

2 thoughts on “Quality and Control in Self-Publishing

  1. The biggest challenge to a self published author is to produce a book that meets the industry standard: ISBN, good cover, back cover copy, spine, proper typesetting, professional editing, bar code … all the things one takes for granted when buying a book. Many times self-published authors do it on a shoe-string, and because they are generally ignorant of the editing and production process, they go with small, often fly-by-night companies who take the money and produce something really shoddy. Step One – get a budget together. Only then think about finishing and prepping your manuscript. One’s talent will not shine through on badly laid out pages, nor will the reader be so overwhelmed by your talent that he or she can ignore awful spellos and bad grammar.

  2. I agree that book publishing gets you hold of all the things that concerns your book. In self-publishing, you don’t only get to hone your skills in writing and touching peoples lives, you get to be your own manager, you get to learn and unlearn new things to effectively get your book out there. Versatility is probably one of the most important things you’ll learn when you venture into self-publishing.

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