Congratulations! You have finished writing your nonfiction book. Now, it is time to have it published. Publishing makes your book “real.” Yet, this is the part of the process that so often derails even the most passionate and determined author. For a novice author, it may seem mysterious and confusing, but a book coach can help dispel the mystery by clarifying available publishing options. Here are five ways to publish:
1. Conventional or traditional
There are two choices here. (1) You submit a proposal to a recognized publishing company, and it is accepted; (2) The publisher assigns the book to you as a writer for hire and pays you a set fee. In both cases, the publisher assumes all publishing responsibilities. Publishers are in business to make money, and they look at your book as a commodity. They ask one question: will it sell?
You take on these responsibilities by forming your own publishing company. For detailed advice on self-publishing, check out Dan Poynter’s website www.parapublishing.com, and his book, The Self-Publishing Manual: How to Write, Print and Sell Your Book. As a self-publisher, you are responsible for printing, warehousing, marketing, and distributing your books.
3. Independent publishers
These are generally small houses that handle from ten to twenty titles a year, usually in few selected genres, such as African American literature, spirituality, inspiration, and religion. An “indy” publisher must put out at least ten ISBNs a year in order to be accepted by a major distributor, such as Ingram or Baker & Taylor. This a growing segment of the publishing world. Most independent publishers belong to the Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA).
Your book is published as an electronic or eBOOK through an e-publisher, on your own Website, or on CD-ROMs. Or, it can be self-published and distributed through other appropriate Websites, listserves, or social networking sites. E-publishing languished for a while; but, due to new technology and renewed interest, it is making a comeback.
5. Print on demand (POD)
POD publishers use digital technology to print anywhere from one to 1,000 books at a time. The rest of the time your book is stored as a digital file on a large server. This eliminates the need for large press runs and storage space. POD printing companies and/or publishers may be found on line at Google or any search engine. The best-known POD publishers include iUniverse, CreateSpace.com, Lulu, Xlibrus, and Lightning Source.
Publishing is a big step, but remember that you have choices, depending on your needs and circumstances. Your book writing coach will not only help you make the most informed and appropriate choice but can also guide you through the entire publishing process.