Authors often wonder should you self publish your book or seek out a traditional publisher. There are pros and cons to both avenues of publishing, so it’s important to understand them before making such an important decision.
You may think you need the know-how of a publishing house behind you or want the prestige that comes along with a big name publisher, but you’re a savvy woman and with the accessibility of self- publishing you need to consider it seriously as an option.
My top 5 answers to the question: Should you self-publish your book
1. Speed to market
When you self-publish your book, you eliminate the time you would have had to spend to find a book agent and then pitch a publisher. Instead, you can use the time to write, publish and promote your book. As a self-published author, you also can typically move through the publishing process faster, than a publishing house does.
In a few months, you can write and publish your book, whereas the search for an agent and publisher can take as long as two years, not including the writing and packaging of your book, which would be additional.
2. Total artistic control
While working with a publishing house, you get the benefit of their valuable insights and know-how, your book is your baby and having total creative decision making over it ensures that you will come out with a book that totally reflects you, your brand and your personality.
Should an opportunity arise around your book, whether it’s interest from a foreign market, or Hollywood has come calling, you get to decide if it’s right for you without having to consult with anyone.
3. you keep 100% of the profits
By publishing it on your own there is no one you need to share profits except the book store or online book retailer.
Most authors don’t make a lot of money from the sale of books, so being able to keep all of your share of the profit is beneficial. Additionally, when you work with a traditional publisher they give you an advance. That means that once you make book sales, you have to pay back the advance or draw out of the retail book sales. Once you finish paying back your advance, you have to share the remaining profits with the publisher, which means less in your pocket.
4. Book promotion and marketing
One of the big frustrations I hear from those who work with a traditional publisher, is that they don’t do much in the way of book promotion and marketing, until you become successful. Even with a publishing deal, as a first or second time author, you’ll have to do your own book marketing and promotion. You might as well self-publish and do your own marketing and promotion and know that you’re reaping all the benefits of those efforts, instead of having to share the rewards with your publishing company, who left you do the heavy lifting.
5. Equal access to distribution channels
Today, as a smart self-published author, you can get the same distribution and same visibility as traditionally published authors. You no longer need a publisher to get you into every bookstore, library, and online retailer. You can also maintain control of distribution, as well as the ability to offer discount pricing as needed.
The advantages to self-publishing are many, though there is a learning curve. Self-publishing doesn’t mean you have to do it all yourself, there are programs, coaches, and companies to help you publish your book like a pro. Done right, it can be hard to tell a self-published book from a traditionally published one.
This post first appeared on She Owns It