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Self Publishing Services

 

There are a number of publishers who offer self publishing services. The most commonly used are:

BookSurge

BookSurge was launched in 2000 to support authors to not only publish their work, but to also retain their content rights and sales profits. It was acquired by Amazon.com in April 2005, and is now a brand of On-Demand Publishing LLC.

BookSurge offers various fee-based services:

Publishing fees - for fiction books - start at $500 and range upward to $3600. The high-end package includes the talents of a professional editor who reviews your manuscript.

Royalty rates - range from 25 percent of the list price for trade paperbacks purchased via retail channels to a 10 percent for those sold via wholesale. This is pretty low, considering you are the one paying to publish and market your work. The plus side is you don't have to buy copies of your publication up front, and BookSurge handles the printing and distribution. They do offer marketing advice, but its up to you to action it and pay for it. From there, Amazon and other online retailers will offer your title.

 

iUniverse

iUniverse offers:

Premier Pro package - [$1300 to $1400]. They offer guidelines on polishing your manuscript, a custom hard cover plus marketing assistance.

If you book is commercial enough, it may even appear in Barnes & Noble bookstores for eight weeks--or longer, if it's selling.

Bargain Fast Track service - [$400] publishes your work without editorial guidance, cover graphics, or illustrations.

Different royalty rates are offered:

Standard - 20 percent

iUniverse's Premier Pro and Premier packages - 10 percent if they agree to sell their books to wholesalers at a 50 percent discount. If your book is a low price, wholesalers will show more interest, leading to more sales, and more revenue.

 

Xlibris

Xlibris is a very difficult offering to work your way through, but the basic information is:

Advantage Package - $300 includes printing a paperback version of your masterwork,

Platinum Package - $13,000 Platinum includes marketing assistance, with an ad in the New York Review of Books' Independent Press Listing. You can set your own book price for an additional $249 and/or set your own royalty rate [boosts the cover price].

 

LuLu

Lulu offers on demand publishing using a simple process, and no up front fees:

  1. Upload your manuscript
  2. Select a book size, binding, cover art, and other features.
  3. Obtain an ISBN [opt] - costs $50.
  4. Set the book's price
  5. Print and ships each item

The author-royalty rate is very generous at 80 percent.

Lulu probably offers to best overall service for self-starters who have marketing skills but light on cash. Lulu also sells its authors' books at its site.

 

CafePress

CafePress.com does not require any up front fees, and offers no marketing assistance. The process is simple:

  1. Choose the size and binding - bindings are really only suited for training manuals, rather than literary works
  2. Upload your manuscript
  3. Set the price - determines your royalty payment.

CafePress.com gets $10 for each book you sell, so if you set the price at $15, you make nearly $5 per sale. CafePress.com's online shop will even sell your book for you. But no sales, no cost!!

Next: Directory of Self Publishing / POD Service Providers

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