Jami Lynn Sands
La Jolla Beach
San Diego, California
There is also what is now referred to as a new ‘hybrid’ in the publishing business. It is a combination of traditional and self-publishing. While it used to be true that traditional publishers usually declined a book that had already been published in some form (with minor exceptions), if they see that a book is doing well, they may elect to pick it up for publication to a wider audience.
Most of these companies are usually connected to what is referred to as a ‘vanity’ press. They will charge thousands upfront to self-publish your work along with the option of picking it up for a contract if it sells well. That way, they risk nothing, since you have already paid them, instead of them paying you.
It is my opinion that this is not a good idea. There is no need to ever do that when you can self-publish it. There may be a slight learning curve to use the self-pub software; some are simpler than others, or it can be done for you for a nominal fee, for those who don’t want to do it themselves.
If it then sells well enough, someone will want to pick it up anyway. You will still have that option, or you can choose to remain in control.
For those who choose to bypass all the publishers, self-publishing can be the answer. This works best for those who do not want to deal with the usual waiting for word on the project. Hearing nothing is often an indication that you should go with a Plan B. If they were interested, they would have contacted you. While it would seem that it would be common courtesy for them to respond one way or another, the problem is usually that they don’t have the staff to respond personally to the sheer volume of submissions they get.
While both traditional publishing and self-publishing have advantages and disadvantages, there is a growing trend toward self-publishing, and in many cases, it can be the best option. Self-publishing also works well for those with the goal of getting their message out as soon as possible. Also, publishers will expect the author to do a certain amount of the promotion/marketing anyway, so why not have a say in how it is done.
Once you have decided to self-publish, the next step is to decide how you will market, brand, and promote your book before it is published so that there is a plan already in place. See publishing tab for further information.
In any case, you must choose what will best fit your needs and budget. Your message is important to the world or you wouldn’t have been inspired to write it in the first place.