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The Pros and Cons of Publishing Through the Traditional route or Self-Publishing
The author of a book has two choices when it comes to publishing his or her book. These are through the traditional route (publisher) or by publishing the book themselves. Each of these two methods has its own advantages and disadvantages. This article will serve to educate upcoming and aspiring authors on which method suits you best. Most aspiring and upcoming authors have the misconception that they can’t ever rival the wider reach of a publishing firm. That was the case a hundred years ago, but thanks to the wonders of technology anyone can have their book available worldwide nowadays. Kindle Unlimited gives readers a free thirty-day trial. How does that help you when self-publishing? Well, keep on reading and you’ll find out.
Now let’s have a look at the main advantage of publishing your book through the traditional route (through publishers). The main advantage is that publishers generally have a wide reach. By that I mean publishers will make your book available to many readers in various parts of the world or worldwide, depending on which publisher you use. Their wider reach is great for an author because you can gain loyal readers from places that you thought were unlikely. Perhaps you believed that your book would do well in America, only for your publisher to inform you that the book’s success is due to it being a bestseller in India.
To keep this article concise, I will now detail the main disadvantage of publishing through the traditional route. You will receive a royalty between 7 to 15% of sales for your book, only after the sales have covered the advance your publisher has given you. Having your book available worldwide sounds great, but 7 to 15% of your sales doesn’t sound so good, does it?
Be sure to conduct extensive research on the publisher when considering going that route. The last thing you want is for your book written in English to be published in a country where little or no English is spoken. Along with the hidden condition that your publisher owns all rights pertaining to your book. That is just an example of how horribly wrong things can get, so be careful.
Moving on, let’s go over the main advantage of self-publishing your book. You guessed it, higher earnings per sale. For example if you sell a copy for $10 and it costs $4 to make and get that copy to your customers, then you pocket $6 on every sale made. Six dollars sounds a lot better than 15% of ten dollars, right?
Now then back to the point I raised about Kindle Unlimited and how it helps aspiring authors. This isn’t really an advantage but just an example of how you can get a wide reach when self-publishing. The best thing about this is that it’s completely free; you can get millions of potential readers without spending a single dollar. This can be done by letting Amazon offer your book to readers on their Kindle Unlimited platform for free. For an agreed-upon period, of course. Having your book on this platform will greatly increase the number of readers that will pick up your book, and that is because they are renting books and not buying them, for a subscription fee to Amazon. This means that readers on Kindle are more likely to try out new releases from new authors because they are simply renting the book. After reading, they might leave a review that will definitely help you in the long-run when selling your book.
The main disadvantage of self-publishing is that it’s an exhaustive process for the author. Publishing firms have long-established partnerships between various other firms such as printing firms and even businesses such as Amazon or Barnes and Noble. Then there’s you, the lone wolf with zero contacts, limited capital, and with little knowledge about how exactly to publish your book. This all can be a very stressful endeavor for an author.
In conclusion, each has its own merits and shortcomings but as for which one is best, that’s up to you.
Written by Readers’ Favorite Reviewer Nicholus Schroeder