Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Defending self-publishing

Earlier today I responded to a posting on another writer's blog.

She said she would not be happy self-publishing and mentioned various objections to self-publishing. It should be easy to surmise what she said from my response below:

I don't know what you consider to be "loads of money," but I'm nearly finished with my fourth self-pubbed book since December, and I can give you some typical numbers:

Editing: $250
Cover design: $200
Stock photos: $10 - $100
ISBN: about $30
Setup and first proof from POD printer: $105
Additional proofs: $30 each
Marketing: zero to infinity

I've had books published by traditional publishers (including Doubleday) but was never happy with the book design, the time-to-market, or the money.

Last fall I formed my own publishing company, using Lightning Source for printing and shipping, and I'd never go back to doing it the old way.

You mentioned a "lesser product." It's only lesser if that's what you produce. It can easily be a better product.

You said it would be nice to see it at bookstores. Would it be nice to see it marked down to a buck and sold on the remainder table if sales don't meet the expectations of someone you don't even know?

If I want to see my books at bookstores, I can drive five minutes to Barnes & Noble and see them on the ordering screens. It's not the same as seeing them on the bookshelves, but it's much nicer than seeing them on the buck-a-book-table, or having my income affected by hundreds or thousands of returned books.

I'd much rather see my books selling at Amazon, B&, Target and dozens of other online booksellers around the world, and know that I can make MUCH more money per book, get the money faster, have the books look exactly the way I want them to, and stay on the market as long as I want them to.

1 comment:

  1. Hello Michael,

    Thanks for the post. Really great comments here.

    You brought up many great points, one questions what is your company called?

    I'll be following your blog, great comments here.