Self-Publishing Primer: Part 6 – What are the pros and cons of self-publishing?

You will find links to the other posts in the series at Self-Publishing Primer.

The pros and cons of self-publishing may seem self-evident from the description in the previous post. However, let’s break down the characteristics of self-publishing into benefits and disadvantages.

Advantages of self-publishing include:

  • You, the author, are in complete control. Your book cannot be rejected or changed by a publisher who may not have the same vision for the book that you do.
  • You can bring your book to market much faster than a commercial publisher would.
  • You own all the rights to the book and all the books that are printed. You make all the profit.
  • You set your own price and marketing strategies.
  • You can take advantage of your personal platform, your niche market, your target audience that a publisher might not be able to reach. You can use your book to build your credibility as a professional, to promote other products, or to supplement a speaking career.

Disadvantages of self-publishing include:

  • You must become a businessperson as well as a writer.
  • You must pay all the costs of publishing and marketing.
  • You must either learn how to do every task involved in publishing your book or find and hire competent people. Either way you will have to learn new skills and spend time on production and marketing in addition to writing your book.
  • You must learn to treat your book as a product, not just as your creation, and to make decisions based on business and marketing considerations.
  • Self-publishing lacks the prestige of commercial publishing, and you will find it challenging to get reviews and distribution in bookstores.

For other views of the pros and cons of self-publishing, read the following articles:

Next, we’ll look at who should self-publish. Is self-publishing right for you and your book?

[tags]publishing, self-publishing, writing[/tags]

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