The Amazing World of Self-Publishing
Self-publishing can be described as the kind of publication process that the author controls by themselves. It refers to physical or digital media.
Self-publishing (with books) is where the author bypasses all the intermediaries, deals directly with the editor, cover artist, book designer and printer, and then handles the distribution and promotion.
A lot of work goes into self-publishing, it might even need one to become a tech-savvy self-publishing whiz as it involves; writing the content, formatting it, getting a cover design and coordinating the launch team in a single space. But, the best part about it is that it pulls you into a world of creative thinking as you come up with new different ideas.
It involves making sure you have;
Great content- some say this is easy, if you can voice an opinion and think logically then you can achieve amazing work but, let’s not forget there is also the part where your material should sound convincing and fall with the audience right from the start to the end of reading your work.
Building a strong platform- this involves creating a central place to share your work and being able to market it correctly.
Converting your work to high sales -grow the audience that is into your work, nurture that community and they will show their support as you build readership.
Organisation- some people have the ability to self-publish and the drive but few have a road map that guides them. Organisation is a simple system that will lead to the ultimate success of your dream.
Different Types of Self-Publishing:
Independent self-publishing (Go Your Own Way)
Author handles all aspects of the publishing process and/or contracts out services, including everything from editing and design to printing, distribution and fulfillment.
If an author forms his/her own publishing company, they may be able to realize some tax savings if they meet the requirements (e.g., home-office tax deductions).
High level of difficulty because most people don’t have the time, resources or money to learn and handle all aspects of the publishing process (similar to starting a small business).
For a book, ideally the author creates a business plan to promote and sell the book, especially if he has significant upfront investments in the book’s production.
Self-publishing with help (Use a Service)
Author enters into an agreement with a publishing service to publish the book at a fee. A contract usually stipulates what the author will pay for the service upfront, what that service entails and what the royalty structure on copies sold will be.
Affordable self-publishing options, almost without exception, use print-on-demand or short-run digital printing technology.
Typically, the lower the cost, the more authors must do on their own. Some services—particularly those offering e-publishing—can be free if the author provides printer-ready files, final cover files, etc.
Publishing services vary tremendously in how they edit, design and distribute books. Usually the business model of these services depends on making a profit from the upfront fees, not from book sales. It’s to their advantage to sell additional services upfront, to create a better product while increasing profit.
Traditional print run / print-on-demand (Create a Physical Book)
Traditional print runs (the most common production method for traditional publishers) use offset printing—a transfer method that can have a high upfront cost, but a cheap unit cost. It makes sense for print runs reaching thousands of copies, but usually creates inventory that needs to be warehoused.
Print-on-demand or short-run digital printing is a popular option for self-publishers, and is also used by traditional publishers to keep titles in print or to rush books to market. It usually has low upfront costs, but high unit costs. Books are printed only when ordered; there is no inventory.
Everything from e-books to websites and blogs (Go Digital)
Option 1: Author self-publishes their work on their own website, blog or social network, and makes it available in any digital format they wish, either viewable on the site or through a download (e.g., a PDF file).
Option 2: Author contracts with an online publishing service to host and sell his/her work in digital formats (anything from a PDF file to an e-book file). Some services can also make a print-on-demand version available.
Some authors undertake a combination of both options.
To those looking to delve into the self-publishing world, remember to always carry a pen with you to make notes and have your idea buzzer ready, good material could pop up anytime!