Episode 50 – The Great Debate!
Traditional Publishing Vs Self Publishing.
Featuring: Tweep Nation (arguing on the side of Self Publishing) and Ciara Ballintyne as moderator (to keep Damien in line)
Outline of terms and back ground, then each team can give their opinion because, after all, this is a debate!
Once Upon A Time, publishing a book conjured up a happy vision of success achieved: the advance! The book signings! A devoted editor who possessed the magic to make your book perfect and desirable! No work for the author! The siren song of publication was strong. And deceptive.
During the last twenty years, the fantasy has altered into a universe of change in an Amazonian rivers of options followed by electric possibilities.
What can you expect of publishing? What has changed? Are their bad options? Better procedures? Who is a good witch? Who is a bad Witch?
According to Publisher’s Weekly, the average book published in the US sells only 500 copies, and the average book self published in the US sells only 50 copies.
Trade Publisher – Random House
Best for fiction
Have all your fantasies come true
Whole game has changed.
Yes, you need an agent
Publishers have always sold to bookstores not readers.
The new model is to sell to readers, which is what an author is now able to do using all the social media available.
Every author needs a marketing plan, which should be in motion long before the book is in print. Agents and editors look for authors with a “platform,” which means that the author should come to the party with a built-in audience of people who are ready to buy the book. A platform can include speaking to thousands of people each year, running a high-traffic blog or website, maintaining a large mailing list (thousands of people) or having other networks that can generate impressive book sales.
Another important consideration is that agents don’t want to see what you will do, they want to see what are doing–the marketing efforts you’re making long before the book becomes reality. And remember, even if you’re self-publishing, there is an important lesson here. If you want your books to sell, you should begin building your audience early. Book marketing requires ongoing effort. Some tactics to consider for your marketing plan include blogging, social media engagement, professional speaking, writing articles, working with joint venture partners, building a mailing list, conducting media interviews, and spending time in communities where your target audience can be found.
Stephanie Chandler – Authority Publishing
“In fact, going with a traditional publisher can be extremely expensive. Authors are generally expected to pick up costs for their book’s website, a book’s outside publicist, marketing materials like postcards, and any costs associated with readings or tours. All of this can run into the tens of thousands of dollars. Trust me, I know.”
Kiri Blakeley writes about pop culture, women, and media. Her traditionally published book, Can’t Think Straight, is in stores now—probably behind an information terminal.
Small Press –
Best for niche or genre market
Cool factor as well as association with the publisher to help promote your book
Lyle Perez from Rainstrom Press was our guest.
Query letters are important to publishers as well as agents.
Question is can I invest in this work and person?
Advance for a smaller publisher $25 to $50 in advance more in royalties
Usually takes about a month to get back to an author
There are a million small publishers in the world – so a writer CAN find them and find the right fit.
Small Publishers have followings so that readers really do read “everything” that Rainstorm press puts out.
Author Assist Publishing – Authority Press
Best for non fiction
Start up costs born by the author
Typically you buy your books in lots of 500 to 5,000
High royalties per book
Have many marketing services in house. But you pay.
Stephanie Chandler has been a guest on our show and discussed some of her options for books.
Self Publishing- Author House
Best for masochists
One of the highest costs per book.
Marketing help is marginal
Independent publishing – Lulu
Best for fiction, poetry, mom
Easy and fast
Medium cost per book
Beginners and those with only one or two books
Best for fiction or non fiction
If you don’t care who your publisher is
Second lowest cost per book after Lightning Source
Easy to work with, and linked to Amazon
POD direct press – Lightning Source
Best for non-fiction
Creating your own imprint for your business books.
You become a publisher
One of the lowest cost per book.
Crowdsourcing – PubSlush.com
Brand new idea
Willing to take on anyone who can promote themselves
Must pre-sell 1,000 books before publication.
The new, new thing.
Jesse Potash has been a guest on our show twice now.
Espresso Book Machine
Best for fiction or non fiction
Immediate if you are standing by a machine.
Closest machine is in Sacramento
this is the future for academics and more obscure books or extreme niche markets.
e-books – Smashwords
Best for e-publishing
Great way to test the market
Amanda Hocking in Forbes Magazine
On her blog, Hocking says she’s sold 900,000 copies (mostly electronic) of nine different books since April 2010.
And just so we’re clear – ebooks make up at best 20% of the market. Print books make up the other 80%. Traditional publishers still control the largest part of the market, and they will – for a long time, maybe forever. Ebooks will continue to gain ground, but I would say that we have at least 5-10 years before ebooks make up the majority.
Saying traditional publishing is dead right now is like declaring yourself the winner in the sixth inning of a baseball game when you have 2 runs and the other team has 8 just because you scored all your runs this inning, and they haven’t scored any since the first.
The bottom line is to consider about what you want from a published book. Consider the costs (anywhere from free – e-publishing to $7,000 with an Author Assist publisher). Consider the book’s platform, your platform and the marketing efforts it takes to keep the book prominent. Consider all this – and then go ahead, take the plunge and get your book out into the world!
Tweep Nation Hosts:
Amber Norrgard: http://amberjeromenorrgard.com/
Dionne Lister: http://dionnelisterwriter.wordpress.com/
Ciara Ballintyne our tolerant moderator: http://ciaraballintyne.com/
My amazing cohost Catharine for all the hard work of putting together the notes and organising the guests week in, week out for a year. Without her this podcast would NEVER have happened. So a big thanks to you Catharine! Http://www.yourbookstartshere.com
And to all those people who follow us, listen to us, a big thanks! Love to see all the Newbies in the chat room each week. A special shout out to Stauroylla who stays awake to join us in the chat room! That’s dedication. @staury88 is her twitter. Follow her.
So who do you think won the day? Love to hear your feedback. firstname.lastname@example.org