For many first-time authors, the dream is to write a book, and then have agents and publishers beat down their door in an effort to sign them to a lucrative, multi-book deal. The reality is, that almost never happens leaving desk drawers and closets cluttered with a forests worth of unpublished pages. For this reason (and to save a few trees), self-publishing is becoming the avenue of choice for a growing number of fledgling scribes.
Self-Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing
Self-Publishing offers a number of advantages over the traditional method:
1. Agents and publishers try to fit new works into an established niche; self-publishers can create their own. Publishing houses pour a lot of money into the publishing and promotion of new titles; they have to think about the bottom line and whether there's an established audience when taking on new authors. When self-publishing, it's a lot easier to try something new.
2. On the subject of the bottom line, self-published authors get to keep a lot more of the money made from sales. In the paper-and-binding process, agents and publishers take their cuts, and then there are all the overhead costs associated with getting a volume on to bookstore shelves. There is very little overhead cost to self-publishing, allowing authors to take home a much higher percentage.
3. Self-publishers have complete creative control. Depending on the site you use, you may get some feedback, but ultimately, which words end up on the page is entirely up to you.
4. It is much, much faster to get a book self-published. Finding an agent, and then a publisher, etc., can take years. By self-publishing an eBook, you can hit open distribution channels in a matter of days or weeks.
It should be said, however, that the traditional route should you be lucky enough to get picked up by a major publishing house has one major advantage over self-publishing: marketing. Publishing houses have their own marketing departments, and will promote your material for you; when you self-publish, that's all on you.
(Continue)...The Five Steps of Self-Publishing