As a new author, determining the right publishing is a tough choice. Within the options are a range of different publishing houses each with their own requirements. Which option should you go with? That depends on a few key things about what you’re looking for.
Hybrid Publishing is right for you if…
- You need help figuring out the publishing landscape. A hybrid publisher is the middle ground between traditional and self-publishing. They will provide their expertise and assist you in the publishing process. They won’t handle everything (the majority of the logistics—but often not marketing) but will be with you through every step and beyond your initial book launch.
- You want better royalties than a traditional publisher. Royalties with a traditional publisher are typically 10%-15%. With a hybrid publisher the average royalties are about 50% per book sold.
- You are able to fund the publication of your book. Part of the reason the royalties are higher is because you have to pay an upfront cost to the publishing house. You pay for their expertise, guidance, and distribution connections and in return receive a higher royalty. The prices range depending on the publishing house and the services they provide.
- You want to retain ownership of your book. While a hybrid publisher helps you through the publishing process, you aren’t selling your book idea to them. You still have the first and final say about what decisions are made to your book. At the end of the publishing process you typically maintain full rights to your book.
- You have a book idea not widely talked about. A hybrid publisher will take on more “riskier” book ideas. Book ideas that aren’t talked about as much or topics that have a more limited audience. If your book idea meets the mission statement of the hybrid publisher, there is a good chance they will help publish your book.
Please note: not all hybrid publishers are created equal so please don’t forget to read the fine print.
If you would like to learn more about hybrid publishing, click here.
Traditional Publishing is right for you if…
- You want a publishing house to handle all the logistics. A traditional publisher will handle all of the editing, design and often the promotion of your book (there is no guarantee they will handle the marketing, contrary to popular belief). For the most part, all you need to do is write and make the required edits when the editor reviews your manuscript.
- You are okay signing the rights to your book to the publishing company. When you sign a contract with a traditional publisher you are signing away the rights to your book. All decisions that are made about your book are done by the publisher. This means both pre and post-publication. Whether that is the cover of your book—the interior formatting—the promotion of your book—or where the book is being sold. The publisher has the first and last say about what happens to your book.
- You want the prestige that comes with certain publishing houses. If you publish with one of the big five publishing houses they will elevate your name as a new author. You gain name recognition within the author and publishing worlds because one of these publishing houses took on your book idea. The larger the publishing house the greater the prestige that comes with writing for them. However, this also means that the larger publishing houses are more strict on what book ideas they take on and who they publish. The book proposal process alone can be quite intense and that must happen before they take you on.
- You want the best chance of mainstream media coverage. When publishing with a large publishing house, you can assume they have connections to get your book media coverage. The larger the publishing house, the larger the chances are that your book will get mainstream coverage. The more coverage your book receives the larger the audience is aware of your book. All of which lead to potential sales.
If you would like to learn more about traditional publishing, click here.
Self-Publishing is right for you if…
- You want to keep almost all of the profit from each book sold. With self-publishing, you make 100% of each book sold directly from you. Bookstores and distributors are the only ones who take a percentage of the profit.
- You are able to cover the cost of publishing. You are the one funding the entire publication of your book. You have to cover the cost of hiring an editor, a typesetter for the layout of your book, and the printing and distribution of your book. A word of caution—vet who you are using beforehand. There are many people that will charge a high price for their services and come back with low-quality work.
- You want to oversee every decision made to your book. Self-publishing your book means that every decision goes through you. You choose who edits and designs your book and you have the final say if you aren’t satisfied.
- You are able to put in the time to adhere to industry best practices. We firmly believe that anyone can self-publish as long as you adhere to industry best practices. This means taking the time to get things done properly. You are going to have to do more than writing. You have to vet the experts who will edit different parts of your book. Market your book on the platforms that your audience is on. Make connections with distributors to have them sell your book. There’s a lot that goes into publishing your book but if you have the time, dedication, and knowledge you can self-publish your book.
Originally published in Publish My Purpose Press