You want to get published, but what sort of publishing are you after: traditional publishing or self-publishing? There’s a big difference between the two and it’s important to put your business hat on and learn the different models to determine which will serve you best.
Traditional publishers pay for editing, cover design, printing, PR, sales and marketing. Whereas self-publishing companies charge you for those services. Traditional publishers make their money from book sales where as self-publishers make money from selling services to authors.
Now which one is suitable for you? Here are some questions that may help you with the decision.
- What is your book’s purpose?
- What are the needs of your target market?
- What is your unique selling point?
- In your genre, what else is on the market?
If you choose to try a traditional publisher, I suggest you go through an agent. They are coined “the gatekeepers” and there are about twenty agents in Canada: five in Vancouver, one in Halifax, and the rest in Toronto. They are salespeople, they know the major publishers, and they have their finger on the pulse of the industry. They generally charge you a commission of 15% based on any money they make for you.
If you’re interested in self-publishing, just have a fat wallet!
After you’ve decided which model, go online and do some research. When you’ve found a company (traditional or self) I suggest you look at the following:
- What genres do they publish?
- Get their submission guidelines.
- How many books do they publish a year?
- If it’s traditional, what is their print run?
- Have they won any awards?
- How long have they been in business?
- Where have their book reviews been published?
- Is there support when the book is out?
Look at your facts and the facts of the industry. Determine your intent and hopefully that will help you to decide what is best for you.