An unselfish wish made on the horn of a unicorn will come true. Our wish? To support the writing community by giving constructive tips and criticism through submissions. Check out the submissions tab for more information. We can survive the crucible of fire together.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Publishing Your Book. Details and Definitions

What is traditionally published? Small Press? Vanity? 

Begin with the basics. Your manuscript is beta-read, polished to the nth degree, and ready to go out into the world.


Traditional has two venues:
1. Submit to literary agent who submits to publisher. Generally, the author has no say-so in edits or cover. An advance payment is made to the author in anticipation of royalties.

Author pays nothing to agent or publisher. Marketing is mostly up to the author.

2. Small press. The author submits directly to the publisher who may or may not give a hang about the author’s thoughts about editing or cover. (Here is where my former publisher, Musa, diverted from the pack. They took my opinion in account on every detail)

Royalties are paid to the author. I was paid every month but not every small publisher does this.

Author pays nothing to agent or publisher. Marketing is mostly up to the author.

Vanity press. The author submits a manuscript. The publisher prints it no matter how bad it is.

Author pays the vanity press for everything. Marketing is up to the author.

Self-Publishing. Author hires an excellent editor and buys a professionally created cover. I don’t advise skipping those steps but many do. Hence, the crummy books going to nothing.

The author decides every step. After Amazon take their cut, all royalties go to author.

After formatting, the author pays nothing to publish via outlets such as KDP and Createspace. Marketing is up to the author.

In the end, it comes down to what you desire.

Do you want the status of having a publisher who holds your rights to the book and treats you bad? Yes, even the Big Five do this. 

Or...do you want to showcase your talent every step of way by self-publishing?


No matter what you chose, note the constant in all the above. Marketing is mostly up to you.

I’ll never regret going with Musa Publishing. They showed me the ropes and treated me with dignity. Even when they called it quits, the rights to our books reverted within ten days and their after care is outstanding. They always paid on time and took great care to keep their authors happy.

But the biggest gift was in expertise and giving my books a venue.

To self-publish wasn’t that big a stretch. I bought the cover photos and my artist from Musa re-created them perfectly. Possibly, I could have formatted the interior on my own, but I chose to go with KMD Webdesigns.

I had an account with KDP and Createspace. After submitting the updated editions sans the Musa logo, I named my publishing company Shamira Publishing and moved through the various decisions on size and marketing. I bought my own ISBN for the print versions but let KDP do the Kindle versions. For now, I’ll go with Amazon only as my only format. I sold a dozen or so at B & N etc and wasn’t really impressed. Besides, Amazon has all formats available for Nook and Apple so why bother.

Mage Revealed went live on Sunday. I hope Wilder Mage is approved soon because,

“I hat-a waiting.” – Inigo Montoya, The Princess Bride.

4 comments:

David P. King said...

Marketing and promotion is super important, and in some ways it's about who you know. This makes having a platform before the book is published more relevant than ever. :)

Charity Bradford said...

I'm so glad things are going smoothly for you! Do you need previous reviews posted again?

LD Masterson said...

At first I thought this was a "here are the pro and cons" post. Then I got to: "Do you want the status of having a publisher who holds your rights to the book and treats you bad? Yes, even the Big Five do this. Or...do you want to showcase your talent every step of way by self-publishing?" and I realized that wasn't the case.

Chrys Fey said...

The Wild Rose Press is another great small press. I've published all of my work with them so far and I'm very happy with them. When the cover for my novella 30 Seconds didn't come out like how I explained to the cover artist, they contacted me first so I could see it and decide. Then I chose the pictures that are now used on the cover. They really are great and help me with any problem I may have.