What is the difference between traditional publishing and self-publishing?
A traditional publisher is interested in publishing books that will generate income for both themselves and the author. Their initial costs will be high yet they have a full quota of staff to proofread, edit, typeset, Quality Assurance check, review and administer every aspect of the publishing process. They also have sales and marketing contacts who will ensure that their books are exposed to a highly competitive marketplace. The author puts their book into the hands of the publisher who may wish to make changes to the book or the way it is marketed that are not in keeping with the author’s original vision, based on what they believe will work best in the marketplace. It therefore follows that the subject matter of the book is of primary importance to a traditional publisher as they will need to be able to sell it to the wider market.
Self-publishing allows any author to publish their book and, for a comparatively small outlay, will receive a good quality product which they are free to market themselves. The subject matter of the book is of secondary importance as a self-publishing company will not be involved in the sales and marketing process. Self-publishing companies place the responsibility with the author for checking each proof when they get it back from being typesetters, rather than doing this in-house. This ensures that the author remains in control of their book and its content at all times. Once published, books will be enabled for distribution with major online retailers and wholesalers; ensuring that authors do not need to be involved in fulfilling customer orders, leaving them free to market the book on their chosen platforms.
Why choose to self-publish?
Of course, the obvious way is to approach a traditional publishing house, get them to read your manuscript, offer you a deal and then wait for royalties to stream in. In an ideal world!
These days sadly, the percentage of manuscripts actually read by publishers – let alone offered a book deal – is dreadfully low, leaving many aspiring authors wondering how to publish their book. This is where self-publishing comes into its own!
Self-publishing has become a more and more popular method of publishing in recent years; it’s cost-effective, reliable and you, the author, are in complete control of the process, guided through it by your self-publishing company – so choose wisely! A good self-publishing house will still review your manuscript and give you feedback before taking on your book; making sure both you – and they – are happy to go ahead and send your manuscript out into the world!
When you decide to self-publish, you take on the roles that a publishing house would typically do – formatting your manuscript, checking your proofs, and, when your book is ready, deciding on the best marketing strategy to get your book noticed.
Print on Demand (POD)
Self-published books are available, post-publication, on a print-on-demand basis. This means that your book’s digital files will be held by the printer until a book order is received and then the book is printed, literally ‘on demand’. No more piles of books sitting in warehouses or in your garage, just order books from us as you need them for your promotions and sales drives.
What type of books do GHP publish?
The genres of books we publish include any subject you can think of including novels, autobiographies and children’s books to cookery, poetry, and academic books to name just a few. Our aim is to publish and produce quality printed books at a very reasonable cost for the self-publishing author.
Publishing Your Book with GHP: Our MD Kim Cross explains how:
Authors who have successfully self-published
There are many reasons to self-publish your book but one of the most compelling has to be the number of literary giants that precede you. Authors such as Virginia Woolf, Charles Dickens and more modern authors such as John Grisham, Tom Clancy and Stephen King have all followed this well-trodden path before being noticed and signed up with traditional publishers.
Self-publishing books are making appearances on bestseller lists across the world. Check out these articles which demonstrate how now-famous authors started out by self-publishing:
All of the authors above (and many more) have published their own works and have gone on to enjoy tremendous successes entertaining literally millions of readers.
Another such success is G. P. Taylor. Graham’s story is interesting in the way he managed to get his first work published by a main-stream publisher. Graham decided to self-publish straight away, by-passing the months of waiting for a possible positive response from a literary agent or publisher. In so doing his book was read by a retired book reviewer from a major Sunday newspaper. The retired gentleman sent Graham’s book to his old employer with a note suggesting they read and review the book. Their subsequent positive review paved the way for a multi million pound publishing deal with Faber and Faber. Imagine if unknown author Graham had followed the conventional route of trying to get his manuscripts read by publishers who are refusing to look at anything that hasn’t come from a literary agent, and literary agents who are swamped with hundreds if not thousands of unsolicited manuscripts each month. He would quite possibly still be waiting to receive a letter of interest or even acceptance!
Why not read the short interview Graham did with GHP and get inspired! Click here to read more...