Self published or traditional publishing?


Many people ask how I published my book, so I thought it would be useful to share my experiences with you.

The route I used was self publishing – which now has many advantages over traditional publishing. Some people still think of self publishing as when you used to order a few thousand copies from a printer and they usually ended up in your garage while you tried to sell them yourself.

Things have really moved on, one of the great advantages with self publishing is speed – once you have a completed and edited manuscript it can become the printed book in your hand in under a week, and also available for people to buy on Amazon within two weeks! The traditional publishing world has long lead times, with many stores planning their promotions months in advance.

There is no physical difference between my book and a traditionally published one – they are both of the same quality and have ISBN numbers so that they can be ordered through any bookstore.

One of the other great advantages with self publishing is the development of ‘print on demand’ – if someone orders my book it may not actually physically exist at that time. When the order is received the book is individually printed and bound, then delivered. This means that the garage full of books can be avoided, and the self publishing house I use deal with all the orders for me.

The book is also available in the US and the UK as well as Europe – it is printed at a location nearest to the order and delivered from there, avoiding the time and expense of delivery from one location.

Where the difference does arise at the moment is in the promotion of the book – traditional publishers have staff and experience in this, whereas with the self publishing route it is the author who needs to do this themselves.

For my own book I have been featured in several magazines so far, and last week was interviewed on the radio as well. I also have a website set up for the book, and have been featured on BNI.com and SuccessNet.

I have been working away at promotion myself and am currently investigating crowdsourcing as a way forward.

There is a great opportunity for a leader to emerge in this area and help self published authors promote their work – I know that several of the top book stores in the UK won’t deal with an author themselves.

Seth Godin is working on ‘The Domino Project’ which looks very interesting.

With the continued growth in the self published authors market, it is an area of great potential.

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