The Basics of Self-Publishing: Pre-WorkPosted by Jessica Oman
A book makes an impressive business card. E-publishing and print on demand (POD) technology make it easier than ever for entrepreneurs to publish a book.
Authors should ask themselves three questions before self-publishing:
1. What are my goals for the book? The answer helps determine which self-publishing service providers are needed. Most self-publishing authors fall into one of three categories, although there may be some overlap:
- Personal – writing for personal reasons such as to create a memoir for family members
- Prestige – writing to help grow a business, establish credibility, or boost wages or fees
- Profit – writing to make a profit from selling the book
2. What is my budget? Authors absorb all costs of self-publishing so their budgets have a big impact on the process.
3. Which self-publishing method do I want to use? Each has advantages and disadvantages:
- Do It Yourself – The author does all the work (editing, designing, ebook formatting, etc.). This is the least expensive method but requires a significant time investment by the author.
- a la carte – The author hires out the work to freelancers. This is relatively wallet-friendly but requires the author’s time and effort to find and manage service providers.
- Self-Publishing Company – The author hires a full-service self-publishing company to handle everything, greatly reducing the author’s workload. Authors should do their due diligence because some companies have questionable business practices. Visit Book Publishers Compared for advice.
- Publishing Consultant – The author hires a publishing consultant to provide guidance and oversee book production. Consulting fees are in addition to fees paid to self-publishing service providers.
Stay tuned for a later post that will discuss the ten basic steps of self-publishing. In the meantime, here are some great resources: The Book Designer, The Creative Penn, ParaPublishing, and The Fine Print of Self-Publishing.
Kim Bookless is a Chicago-based publishing consultant, writer, and editor. She co-founded the Chicago Self-Publishing Group to help educate authors on self-publishing, and she is the Publicity Chair for Chicago Women in Publishing. Visit her online or email her at .