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Author Topic: Self Publishing and Digital Printing  (Read 1316 times)
Adrian
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« on: August 10, 2003, 20:42:10 »

Greetings everyone,

For those who do not wish to run the gauntlet of super-fickle publishers, this is an excellent website on self-publishing:

http://www.parapub.com/getpage.cfm?file=/homepage.html&user=%%user%%

Dan Poynter has also written a book called "The Self-Publishing Manual, How to Write, Print & Sell Your Own Book"

To quote "by Dan Poynter is a complete course in writing, publishing, marketing, promoting and distributing books. It takes you step-by-step from idea, through manuscript, printing, promotion and sales. Along with an in-depth study of the book publishing industry, the book explains in detail numerous innovative book-marketing techniques. "Whether you sell out to a publisher or publish yourself, the author must do the promotion. This book is about promotion." The Manual is a Bible and a constant reference for publishers. Writer's Digest Book Club selection. Revised edition. ISBN 1-56860-073-9. Softcover book, 5.5 x 8.5, 432 pages $19.95

As this clearly states "the author must do the promotion". Yes, traditional publishers may be fickle and only pay 10% royalty of the net cost of the book - often less than a dollar per copy sold - but they still do not promote your book - the author has to do that! By self publishing or going the 1st Books Library type route you get the book published and make many times more in commission. I reckon the breakeven point would be to sell between 100 and 200 copies.

There have been numerous famous authors who were persistently rejected by publishers and published themselves with huge success. Usually when this happens a large publisher comes along and buys the rights for a very large sum. This is also possible for the print on demand publishers such as 1st Books Library. With these people you retain the full rights to the book, and if a large traditional publisher comes along you can still sell the rights to them for a much larger sum than would have been offered in the first place even if they had accepted.

I should point out that "print on demand" is not second rate, in fact it is the way of the future. It really means digital printing which is hugely more efficient than the archaic typesetting and offset printing methods. It is the cost of production which causes publishers to be so selective; they have to print, stock and sell a large number of books just to breakeven. Re-prints involve printing thousands more for stock with the same risks. This is why titles from traditional publishers go out of print; something that never happens with digital printing. With digital printing, the entire book including the cover is stored on a computer as an Adobe Acrobat PDF file. When a distributor, book store, Amazon, B&N etc. order a copy against a sale, the book is printed to order and shipped directly. No typesetting costs, no inventory costs and no risk. The quality is superior to traditionally printed books. I heard from a very reliable source that even prestigous printers such as the Cambridge University Press are outsourcing to the digital printers now.

With best regards,

Adrian.

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