If you’ve ever tried to get a book published, you’ve surely run into a few unfriendly book agents. There is a reason why book agents are quick to dismiss manuscripts. Traditional publishers are always looking for books that are guaranteed sellers.
Does that mean they always get it right?
In fact, most publishers flop. However, they make up their flops with the bestsellers they publisher. The same thing happens to movie studios. For every mega-blockbuster, there are a dozen flops. In the meantime, writers get shafted by publishers and movie studios as they lose the rights to their works.
With the rise of digital publishing, now every author and startup publishing company has a fighting chance. While the mega-publishers of the world are scrambling to right off the disruptors, the little guys have the opportunity to grow and thrive.
In this article, we are going to take a look at the key differences between traditional and self-publishing.
Cost of Publishing
Production costs are astronomical for traditional publishers. In addition to overhead, they need to pay salaries, commissions, marketing, and distribution costs. Needless to say, there isn’t much left over for authors. Most authors pocket a couple of bucks for every book that’s sold. As for self-publishing, production costs are incredibly low. As such, publishing a book online costs a couple of hundred dollars, at most. If self-publishers go the print-to-order route, each book has a fixed production cost. Therefore, authors get far more than just a couple of bucks on each book sold.
Control Over Content
Authors basically relinquish all control over content when they sign on. This can be very frustrating, especially when publishers decide to hack an author’s original idea. Moreover, editors are given free rein over the original manuscript. In the end, authors are left with a shell of their original idea. As a self-publisher, all content decisions are made by the author or content owner. Therefore, self-publishing gives authors total control over the outcome of the book. If the book is successful, it is the result of the author or publisher’s work. If the book flops, then it would prove to be a learning experience.
Traditional publishers zap over 90% of an author’s royalties. Perhaps the best thing that traditional publishers do is keep the writer’s name on the book. Otherwise, authors are left with meager earnings after everything is said and done. The best authors in the world are left with about a 10% cut of their book’s earnings. In the self-publishing domain, you can keep up to 70% if you publish through Amazon, or 100% if you sell on your own website. Needless to say, this is a much better return compared to traditional publishing.
Control Over Rights
As a self-publisher, you have total control over your book’s rights. You don’t need to fork them over to a publisher. As such, you stand to be the sole proprietor of the intellectual property contained in your book. Ultimately, this is a much better deal than any traditional publisher could ever offer you.
So, if you’re ready to give self-publishing a go, be sure to check out the other posts we have for you. You will surely find a great deal of useful information!