Self-publishing is filled with myths. Unfortunately, these myths are simply unfounded. They are mainly the result of ignorance. That is why we are going to debunk the top three myths about self-publishing in this article.
Myth #1: Self-publishing is easier than traditional publishing.
Many folks believe that self-publishing is just about writing a book and uploading it to a platform like Amazon Kindle. This myth perpetuates the belief that writing a book is easy. Moreover, it devalues the hard work and effort that goes into creating content. While publishing a book is simpler than ever, it doesn’t mean that it’s easy.
The fact is that most self-publishers have to go at it completely alone. They lack the staff that large, traditional publishers have. That means far more work than traditional publishing companies. As for authors, self-publishing a book often implies writing, editing, cover design, marketing, and logistics. As such, self-publishing a book can take its toll on both publishers and authors.
Myth #2: Self-publishing is a cash cow
On the surface, self-publishing appears to be a highly profitable venture. After all, most self-publishers are small-time operations. As such, they don’t have the overhead or the staff that traditional publishers do. In many cases, self-publishing companies work out of a home office or co-working space.
Just because self-publishers don’t have the overhead that traditional publishers do, that doesn’t mean they’re making money hand over fist. Many times, newcomers to the self-publishing scene struggle to gain traction. That’s why many self-publishers struggle to stay afloat in the early going. Some authors never manage to make a decent return on their publications.
The fact of the matter is that making money self-publishing requires the right know-how and patience. Over time, self-publishers can find the right formula for success. However, it’s important to note that small self-publishing companies never make as much as traditional publishers.
Myth #3: Books sell themselves
This myth is pervasive among people outside of the publishing industry. To most observers, all you need to do is publish and book and wait for the cash to come in. There is an unfounded perception that authors can suddenly become millionaires by publishing a successful book.
The reality is that books don’t sell themselves. Traditional publishers spend a great deal of money on marketing. This is why they get to keep the lion’s share of book royalties. Moreover, traditional publishers need to maintain a significant network of bookstores and online sales channels.
Self-publishers need to exert even more effort in marketing their books. Since self-publishers don’t have the size and scale of traditional publishers, they need to engage in grassroots, social media marketing. Therefore, this type of marketing requires more time and dedication. Now that we had shed light on these myths, it’s important to acknowledge that self-publishing is often a labor of love. The passion that self-publishers and authors must invest in their craft often compensates for the time and effort needed to make headway in this highly competitive market.