Everything You Need to Know About Publishing Your Book
I’m sure you’ll agree with me when I say that learning how to publish a book or e-book seems to be a daunting task.
But does it need to be?
The publishing landscape has changed so much over the last ten years that you might be surprised by how simple it has become.
In this quick and easy guide, we’ll discuss some of the basic steps involved in getting a book published.
Then we’ll go into detail about publishing companies as well as self-publishing options so you’ll have a good idea of which choice is right for you.
If you were able to learn how to write a book, then taking the next step should be a breeze.
Ready to begin? Let’s start by taking a look at some common new author questions.
What Is a Publisher?
A publisher is an individual or a corporation that takes responsibility for printing, storing and distributing a digital or written work, such as a book.
If you are a writer or an author, you may work with a publisher at some point during your career.
How Much Does it Cost to Publish a Book?
The amount of money it will cost to publish a book varies considerably based on the way you plan to publish.
If you are working with a traditional publishing company and the company views your book as a good investment, the cost to you will be minimal.
The publishing company will handle the majority of the expenses in return for the rights to your book, and you will receive royalties when copies of the book are sold.
If you choose to publish a book without the help of a publishing company, you may pay anywhere from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars to publish your book, depending on the choices you make.
Lowering the Cost of Publishing a Book
The least expensive way to publish a book is to convince a top publisher to invest in it.
However, if you are not able to work with a traditional publisher, you can lower the cost of publishing a book by choosing less expensive storage, printing and distribution services.
However, it is important to note that choosing cheaper providers sometimes results in a poorer quality of service, which may impact the success of your book.
How to Publish a Book for Free
As stated before, you can publish a book for free by working with a traditional publisher who is willing to cover the costs for you.
However, if you choose this path, you will be required to allow the publisher rights to your book and a portion of the revenue it earns.
Certain online companies, such as Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, also provide free self-publishing services for digital and print content.
If you choose to self-publish without the help of one of these services, however, it may not be possible to publish your book for free.
The important thing for you, the aspiring author, is to keep your momentum as you figure out your path to being published.
Fortunately, if you were able to find enough writing motivation to finish your book, then you should have enough inspiration to get through this phase of the journey.
All of this effort will be worth it when you make the bestsellers list – trust me!
How to Publish a Book
Once you have written a book, you must publish it to get it to your readers. However, publishing a book can be a challenge.
In general, there are two primary methods of publishing. You can choose to work with a traditional publisher, or you can publish the book on your own.
When you choose to work with a traditional publisher, you will start by finding a suitable publishing company and convincing that company that your book will be successful.
If the company agrees to publish your book, you will sign a contract that determines how much you will be paid in royalties.
If you decide to publish on your own, you will have a range of options. You can use a free publishing service to publish your book digitally and/or in print. You can also purchase other self-publishing services to print, distribute and store your book.
Tips on How to Get a Book Published
Publishing a book is not always easy. Below are some tips to help simplify the process.
1. Edit your book carefully.
Before submitting your book to any publisher, make sure you have edited it carefully for grammar, spelling and content.
Editing your book thoroughly ensures that you have the best possible chance of getting it published successfully.
2. Research your options.
To make the best decisions for your career, research your publishing options before you move forward.
If your book is accepted by more than one publishing company, for example, you should compare offers carefully to make the best selection.
3. Pitch to the right companies.
Some publishing companies may be more willing to accept your book than others. Research different companies to determine which ones will be most likely to be interested in your book.
Don’t waste your time or your resources pitching your book to companies that are unlikely to invest in your career.
4. Be willing to publish yourself.
If you cannot find a publishing company that is willing to invest in your book, consider publishing it yourself.
Even if you don’t have the funds to self-publish using more traditional methods, you can use a free publishing service to distribute your book to millions of readers online or in print.
How to Get a Book Published for the First Time
Once you have published one book, publishing subsequent works won’t be as difficult. However, getting the first book published can be a challenge.
To get your first book published, you may have to spend more time learning about the process and working on your draft.
You may also have to spend more time looking for a publishing company and/or a self-publishing platform than you will later in your career.
Best Publishing Companies for New Authors
The best publishing companies for new authors are those that are willing to take a chance on an author that doesn’t have a long history or a solid, reliable base of readers.
Many of these publishing companies explicitly advertise themselves as interested in works from new or inexperienced authors.
Steps to Publishing a Book
Publishing a book involves several steps that you must follow before your book can hit the shelves or become available as a digital download.
Book Publishing Process
If you are utilizing traditional publishing, the book publishing process begins when you submit your book draft to a publisher.
The publisher will review your draft and decide whether or not to proceed. In some cases, the publisher may ask for revisions before accepting the book.
Once the book has been accepted and you have signed a contract with the publisher, the book will go to print. Eventually, it will be distributed to retailers for sale.
How Long Does it Take to Publish a Book?
The length of time it takes to publish a book can vary. If you are self-publishing, you can publish very quickly. However, if you are working with a publishing company, it may take longer.
The publishing company will determine the schedule and the amount of time required to prepare your book for release.
These days, future-authors-to-be benefit from a plethora of self-publishing companies. The variety of options helps lower the barrier to entry and makes publishing a book more affordable.
Let’s take a moment to explore a few common questions about modern practice.
What Is Self-Publishing?
Self-publishing involves publishing a book without the help of a traditional publishing company.
When you choose to self-publish a book, you may pay for and arrange all aspects of the publishing process on your own, or you may work with a company that handles some of these tasks for you.
If you work with a non-traditional self-publishing company, you may need to pay for specific services and/or turn over some rights to your book.
One of the greatest concerns with traditional publishing is the high overhead and upfront costs.
In general, self-publishing options will cost much less and in some cases will be free for the author – given that the publishing company will take a cut when sales come in.
How Much Does it Cost to Self-Publish a Book?
The amount of money it will cost to self-publish a book depends on how you choose to publish.
For example, if you decide to self-publish with a free service online, you may not have to pay anything.
However, if you don’t use one of these services, you will need to pay for printing, distributing, storage and any other costs related to the release of your book.
How to Self-Publish a Book
Are you determined to self-publish a book so you can become an author and change your life?
But before you get started, you should know:
Not all self-publishing companies are the same.
Here are a few more factors you ought to consider before choosing your path.
Self-Publishing on Amazon: Pros and Cons
Many people who decide to self-publish try to do so on Amazon. There are both advantages and disadvantages to this choice.
Advantages of self-publishing with Amazon include access to the largest e-book market available, as well as optional access to the second-largest e-book market in the world.
However, Amazon will demand specific rights to your book, and you may be shut out of other markets if you choose to self-publish on Amazon.
Self-Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing
Self-publishing differs from traditional publishing in several ways.
In traditional publishing, you work with a publishing company that handles all of your expenses and the tasks related to the printing, storage and distribution of your book.
If you choose to self-publish, however, all of these tasks and expenses become your responsibility.
Additionally, when you choose traditional publishing, the publishing company will have control over some of the rights to your book and will likely take a large portion of the profits.
If you self-publish, you can retain full rights to the book and the revenue it earns.
A number of people are making a living as self-published authors. Some of these individuals include Stephen King, Amanda Hocking, Hugh Howey and Vox Day.
There are a few major book publishing companies that every author should consider. Each of their specific processes, services and contracts may impact the outcome of your whole deal.
These might include factors such as how much money you make from publishing your book and how much you enjoy working with their team.
Let’s take a quick look at the different ways they may add value to your future-bestseller.
Traditional Book Publishing Companies
When you think of the old school, painstaking process of pitching a book to publishers – or the success stories of stubborn authors who wrote hundreds of book proposals before finding a company willing to take a chance on a new author – those are traditional book publishing companies.
Over the years, some have adapted to new times and technology; however, their essential roles have not really changed.
What Is a Publishing Company?
A publishing company is a company that handles the printing, distribution, and storage of an author’s book.
What Does a Publisher Do?
A publisher’s job is to find books that are likely to sell well and execute contracts with their authors. Once a publisher has signed a contract with an author, the publisher begins the process of printing the book and preparing it for sale.
How to Find the Best Publishing Companies
A large number of publishing companies are available, and some of these companies provide better services than others.
However, different companies appeal to different types of authors. To find the best publishing company for you, research your options carefully.
Self-publishing companies are companies that assist authors with the process of publishing books on their own. These companies help with printing or digital preparation, as well as the distribution of works.
Best Self-Publishing Companies
Some of the best self-publishing companies include Kindle Direct Publishing, Kobo and Xlibris. However, a number of other options are also available.
Most self-publishing companies have websites where they market their services.
These websites are easy to find with a simple search. Researching different companies on websites can be helpful as you consider your options.
List of Self-Publishing Companies
A large number of self-publishing companies are available.
Some of these companies include:
- Virtual Bookworm
- Kindle Direct Publishing
- Book Baby
Self-Publishing Companies Reviews
One of the best ways to determine which self-publishing company is best for you is to read reviews of various options. Reviews for self-publishing companies are readily available online.
Kindle Direct Publishing
Back in 2007, Amazon launched what is now called Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) to complement their Amazon Kindle e-reader.
It was positioned to benefit authors and publishers by allowing them to independently publish their books directly to the Kindle app.
Benefits of Amazon’s Book Publishing Platform
The benefits of using a book publishing platform from an e-commerce giant such as Amazon have wide appeal to authors.
A few of standout perks include:
- Authors can easily reach millions of readers
- E-books and paperbacks are free to publish
- Writers can publish their book in a few days
How to Publish a Book on Amazon
Publishing a book on Amazon is an option for any author. Using Kindle Direct Publishing, you can have your book ready for readers in a matter of days.
You can self-publish a book on Amazon following these steps:
- Go to kdp.amazon.com and create a free account
- Create a new title from within your dashboard
- Enter your book title and subtitle when prompted
- Add your book description
- List any contributors, including yourself
- Add your author name
- Verify your publishing rights
- Select an age range if needed
- Select your book release option
- Upload or create your book cover
- Choose a DRM setting to control share-ability
- Upload your book in an acceptable file format
- Convert your book into Kindle Format
- Verify your publishing territories
- Set your pricing and royalty
- Tips for maximizing sales
- Enroll in KPD select
- Add categories to target your audience
- Select search terms with high volume
- Enroll in Kindle Matchbook
- Select Kindle Book Lending
- Save and publish your book
- Watch your book go live within 12-48 hours
Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing
Kindle Direct Publishing is the name of the self-publishing company operated by Amazon.com. It is one of the most popular self-publishing companies in operation.
As mentioned above, you can write your book in an acceptable format and convert it to an e-Book for Kindle devices in a matter of days.
Acceptable formats include:
- Word doc
- Rich Text Format
- Plain text
- Adobe PDF
- Kindle Package Format
Kindle Direct Publishing Review
Many self-published authors have used Kindle Direct Publishing, and quite a few of these authors have written online reviews. Most authors who have published using this service are happy with the result.
How to Self-Publish on Amazon
To get started with self-publishing on Amazon, simply navigate to Amazon’s website and follow the instructions provided.
The steps I listed above give an overall sense of what to expect, but the KDP platform does an excellent job of walking authors through each step and explains all of your options in greater detail.
Amazon Self-Publishing Cost
How much does it cost to self-publish on Amazon?
Here’s the deal:
It doesn’t cost anything to self-publish your book using Amazon’s services. However, Amazon will take a portion of your earnings if the book sells.
That means you risk less up front in case your book doesn’t sell well, but they will take a bit more on the back-end.
Book Publishing FAQ
Once you have published over 80 books like I have, you might get a lot of questions about publishing, too.
The following are a sample of the most frequently asked questions about the entire book publishing process.
Is Publishing a Book Hard?
Publishing a book can be difficult, depending on how you choose to publish. However, anyone can self-publish a book.
Is Publishing a Book Expensive?
Publishing a book can be expensive, depending on the choices you make. However, it is also possible to publish a book for free.
Is Publishing a Book Worth It?
If you have written a book that will sell effectively, publishing it is well worth the trouble.
How Much Does an Author Earn Per Book?
The amount of money an author earns for each book he or she publishes varies considerably based on many factors.
Some books may bring in very little money, while others may earn millions. This will depend on the structure of the deal you set with your publisher.
How Much Can You Make from a Self-Published Book?
As with a book published traditionally, the amount of money you can make from a self-published book depends on many different factors. If your book is highly successful, you may earn thousands in profit.
If your book is not as successful, you won’t earn as much. Once you have established a solid base of readers, subsequent books you publish on your own may earn more money.
How to Get a Book Deal
Getting a book deal is not always easy. If you want to get a book deal with a traditional publisher, you will need to convince the publisher to invest in your book.
This means that you will need to create a book draft that captures the publisher’s attention and seems like it would sell a significant number of copies.
In order to convince the publisher to invest, you may need to write a book proposal that explains your book and explains why it would be a good investment for the publisher.
How to Write a Book Proposal
When writing a book proposal, you will need to explain what your book is about. However, this should not be the primary focus of your book proposal. The publisher will care more about selling the book than its topic.
For this reason, you need to focus your book proposal on the benefits the book will provide for readers and why readers will want to purchase it once it has been published.
Are you ready to publish a book? Learn more about writing and publishing a book from my free webinar.