Recently, I thought I'd share my book publishing journey with you. Being both a publisher and an author, I'm fortunate to see both sides of the journey. With that comes a few insights into how it works and how authors can make the most their journey in the publishing worlds to make their book the best it can be. The journey to publishing a book can be confusing without that extra guidance, and I'd love to give you a few tips that can help, for example finding the right publisher for you and your book.
Have you written a book and now you're ready to publish?
If no, keep writing! You can do it. Over time, I'd love to be able to write more posts to help people with the writing process, too. For now, if you have any questions, please feel free to ask!
If yes, great job! Have you self-edited? It's really important to review your own book and self-edit before you get in touch with a book publisher to ensure you get the absolute best out of the time you're with the pros.
And, when you're ready to publish your book, it's time to find the right publisher for you and your book. Which can be quite hard. There are lots of them, and lots of different types of them! So, how do you know which is best for you? I'll break them down really quickly below.
Different types of book publishers (briefly)
These are the ones everyone still thinks of. The ones you have to submit your manuscripts to and cross your fingers and eyes to hope they say yes. They'll handle the publishing and distribution for you, and you'll get a handy advance. But, it's not all easy and roses. There are plenty of pros and cons, so make sure you do your due diligence and find out all sides of the trade publishing industry. Maybe I'll write a post about it later on ...
Assisted independent publishers
I guess you can think of these as the halfway kind ... sort of. With assisted independent publishers, you get to have a bit more control over the publishing process while working with a team of professionals who'll give you their pro advice and guidance on how to best create and publish your book. It's great if you have a strong idea of where you want to take it, and want a team alongside you, too. Again, do your research and see if this works well for you.
This is where you can do it all your way and publish your book the way you want. With self-publishers, they'll give you advice and support on how your book would do best, but it's all entirely up to you what you do. They'll also offer services to help you with areas you need, for example, formatting or editing. As always, do your research. If you think you want to go at it full throttle on your own, but want a few areas of help, this might be good for you. This is also, usually, the cheaper independent option.
How to find the right publisher for you
Think about how you envision your journey. Do you want to be very independent and do as much as you can on your own, are you working on a smaller budget, do you want it to be guided with a team of pros, or do you want to try trade and see if you can make it in the trade industry? The great thing about there being so many different types of book publishers is that you can choose which suits you and your book, and which you think will help you achieve your goal.
Of course, do your research on each of these, and it'll be a little different for each individual publisher too. One assisted independent publisher might do things completely differently to another, or may have different goals, values, distribution networks. It's important to find out even at such small levels which you'll get along with.
Once upon a time, there were fewer publishing options, and you had to go into trade, submit your manuscript, and hope they'd say yes. These days, we get many more choices and, to some degree, we can pick and choose those that work well for us. Use this to your advantage and find a book publisher that suits you; don't wait around for someone to choose you. Take control of your book publishing journey.
My book publishing journey: which book publisher did I go with?
I'm going to start sharing my book publishing journey with you while I'm going through it. This way, you can see in real-time what happens when you publish a book and what the book publishing journey involves. It can seem a little unknown and confusing, otherwise.
As for which book publisher I chose to work with to publish my book, I'm going through the assisted independent publishing route. Honestly, I'm publishing through the company I work for as a publishing coordinator, but I couldn't think of anyone better to work with. I love my team, I know they're the best at what they do, and I couldn't imagine any other way to publish my books. Besides, if I didn't believe in them enough to publish with them myself, I'd feel dishonest to be working there to help other amazing authors publish their books there. They're the best, and I love working with them on both sides.
To publish your book with an assisted independent publisher (or, at least, with ours! I'm not sure about others), just contact them and let them know a little bit about your book, your vision for it, and ask for a quote. This will depend on what services you want to go for, so have a think about whether you want to go for the full publishing shebang, or pick and choose to do it a little more self-publishing style. Either way is fine! This includes editing, formatting, illustrations if you want them, marketing mentorship (because every book publisher requires you to market your own books, these days. You won't get out of it!), distribution, websites, press release writing ... you name it, they do anything!
Likely you'll start by chatting with the 'sales' team, though they're not really sales, more like 'what do I need to publish my book' help team. Then, they'll pass you on to the appropriate publishing team members to get the exciting part into play.
And remember, if you've chosen the right publisher for you and your book, you'll know it. Find out the support they can offer you and what you need. If you want to pass it to them and they handle it, find that out first. If you want to walk through the whole process with them and have some control over it, ask and find out. It's got to work for you. Publishing a book is creating a legacy, and you've got to make sure it's a legacy you look back on and feel thrilled about.
What's next in the journey to publishing a book?
The next stage in my book publishing journey was editing, and I'm excited to share this stage with you. While I wanted this to be a 'follow me as I go', I've already finished the editing process, so I'll do my best to share what it was like.
My first book to be edited was my children's picture book, My Best Friend is a Dragon. You can read more about it on my home page. Unfortunately, it's not quite ready to publish and share yet, but I'm so excited about going through the publishing journey and sharing that with you.
I do, however, hopefully, have my first new adult book going into editing soon, so maybe I can share that as I go so you can see what it's like with a bigger, longer, adult fiction book. Stay tuned!
Either way, stay tuned to see what it was like in the book editing journey!
Feel free to ask any questions you have about the book publishing journey, below, in the comments section.
See you next time, and good luck on your own publishing adventure.
Want to watch the video of this topic?
On my YouTube channel, I'm filming my book publishing journey and sharing how to find the publisher for you in video.