Book Publishing Specialists
What Is Self-Publishing?April 17, 2007 by Grael Norton, Acquisitions Manager
You’ve just finished your first book-dotted the final i, crossed the last t, brought your book to a fitting close with a final image that rivals that in The Great Gatsby.
Or maybe you finished your book last year, and have spent your time ever since trying to get agents and/or publishing houses to read your manuscript-to no avail (more on that in our next newsletter).
Or maybe you’ve already published three or four books with a big house-and you’re tired both of not making any money and of not having any control over your work.
“Hmmm, maybe I should try self-publishing,” you think.
But what is “self-publishing,” exactly?
The truth is, it depends.
Only a handful of companies allow you to do professional quality layout work entirely on your own.
Keep in mind, though, that these companies don’t offer much in the way of editorial services, and also generally charge a high cover price for their titles.
A good rule of thumb is that these self-publishing companies work great on projects where you’re making a noncommercial book, such as an album of family photos that can be printed one at a time by family and friends.
Other self-publishing companies ask for a “camera-ready” file of your book.
This generally means that what you turn in to the publisher is what your book is going to look like.
This also means that the publisher is putting the burden of doing the layout and design on you-so this type of self-publishing works great if you have a background in print layout, or if you’re simply the type of person who enjoys doing things yourself.
The last type of self-publishing is what might be called “assisted self-publishing.” This generally means that you send your manuscript to the publisher and they take care of the rest.
This publishing solution may be a tad more expensive, but then, you’re paying the company both for their expertise and to deal with any headaches that may arise.
Companies who specialize in assisted self-publishing often vary quite dramatically in the types of services they offer for your book, as well as the fees they charge for those services.
Make sure you define your goals for your book (both personal and professional), then ask the company as many questions as you need.
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