With the explosion in eBook readers such as the Kindle, Nook and iPad I‘ve been intrigued on how things in the publishing world are changing. Katy Valentine has a good number of books in print and also available electronically. Not only that, Kat has helped local authors self publish their own books like Melissa Abbott. So to say that Kat can speak to the subject would be an understatement.
So Kat is doing a series on her blog-Parlez-Moi Press about the different ways that people go about bringing their books to the marketplace and she is Guest posting here on GMG.
So here is the first in her series-
How To Publish Your Book (or Not)
Innovations in digital technology mean that publishing today is very different than it was even a few years ago. Also the growth and popularity of ebooks has changed the entire industry. In December 2010 Barnes & Noble announced that their web site sold more ebooks than print books. This trend is just beginning.
Since I have five books currently in paperback and six ebooks (plus 2 in production) I have learned a lot about the publishing industry. In 2010 I sold a little over a thousand books in a combination of paperback and eformat. Along the way I’ve learned a lot about publishing and I am writing this to provide information for other authors who wish to publish. What I write here is purely from my own experience and I will be adding to this as time permits in the hope it will help. So let me begin with a few words about conventional publishing:
Part 1 – Conventional Publishing & How It Works
The ideal for most aspiring authors is to sell their manuscript to a big publisher, get a hefty advance, and have their book edited, designed, printed and distributed. Once the book is in print authors dream of book signing tours set up and paid for by their publisher where they are wined and dined, meet their fans, sell and sign lots of books, and the money starts rolling in. The ultimate ideal is for the book to be optioned by Hollywood, a movie made with top name stars, and merchandising rights for everything from t-shirts to video games. This is a nice dream and it does happen for some lucky people but they are very much in the minority.
The truth is a publisher has to consider a lot of factors before even considering to publish a book, the top ones being a.) how much will they have to invest to produce it, and b.) how much market appeal does it have. Producing a book is very, very costly. The process of editing, working with the author through rewrites, designing, printing, distributing and promoting is expensive and publishers have to make sure their investment will yield a profit to justify their expenses. One of the things they need to consider is how marketable the author is, as well as the book. Like it or not, we live in a personality-driven society. New authors are tough to promote and an author who has a certain measure of “star” power has an advantage. Sad to say, but a lot of readers are more interested in the authors than in their books.