What Does Self-Publishing Mean? – Choosing Between Traditional vs Self-Publishing

Learn what does self publishing mean and Choosing Between Traditional vs Self-Publishing

Being a writer has never been as easy as it is now; the digital era provides hundreds of options to publish a book. And self-publishing is the best among all. 

Self-Publishing a book could be the most lucrative, affordable, and easiest way for writers to start their author journey successfully. It is literally taking the world and the publishing industry by storm after the pandemic. Why? Because it is digital, centralised, and cost-effective, you can publish a book in less than 30 minutes. 

If you are a writer wondering how to publish a book cost-effectively and if self-publishing is worth it, this blog will put your worries to rest. We will tell you everything about the term “self-publishing” so that you can make an informed decision before you take the plunge. 

What is Self-Publishing a Book?

Self-publishing is the method of book publishing online using a free digital platform, like Writat. Self-publishing is like a Do-it-Yourself toolkit for book publishing and selling where the author takes care of everything – writing, editing, formatting, cover designing, price setting, publishing, and marketing – without the assistance of publishing houses, agents, or traditional publishing companies. 

Self-publishing comes with several benefits, such as:

  • It offers you maximum creative control.
  • You can take home a greater share of the profits.
  • Book sellable time is less than a week.
  • Print on Demand technology reduces inventory costs. 
  • You can maintain full rights to your book. 
  • It is hassle-free – you can publish in 3 easy steps. 
  • You can distribute your book to anyone, anywhere. 

Most popular self-publishing companies offer free services. But don’t get confused or judgmental with the word ‘Free’. Many misled people judge it as a waste of money since it is cheap. But just because it is free doesn’t mean it’s of no value. Self-publishing allows writers to sell their work without being pressured in return for a small percentage of the author’s compensation. 

While Writat is the cheapest self-publishing agency in India, it provides 16+ book publishing benefits for global writers. They include;

  • Publish your book in any language
  • eBook, paperback, and hardcover publishing options
  • No hidden costs or terms
  • Publish fiction, non-fiction, academic, photobook, poetry, and children’s book
  • Sell globally, across 80+ countries
  • Print on Demand in local printers 
  • Sell your book directly to your readers
  • No gatekeepers
  • No upfront cost for inventory and large print runs
  • Take home 80% of the profits
  • Different templates for different book genres
  • Publish using a smartphone
  • Dedicated dashboard to track sales 
  • Library of 500+ cover designs
  • Expert guidance and interactive knowledge base

Choosing Between Self-Publishing vs. Traditional Publishing in 2022

It is important to understand the difference between Self-Publishing and Traditional Publishing as you decide on your best career path. As we have already established knowledge about self-publishing, let us learn a little bit about traditional publishing. 

What is Traditional Publishing?

In traditional book publishing, authors first find a reliable book publication agency and submit their manuscripts for screening. The publisher then screens the book for quality, sales potential, and value to the niche reader. Once the book passes the screening test, the author and publishing company sign a contract, after which the company takes over the financial, creative, and ownership rights from the writer and completes the publishing process. The company then prints, promotes, distributes, and markets the book. In return, the author receives a small percentage of the book sales as a royalty. 

However, since the publishing company owns the rights to the book, they can distribute the book wherever they want or take it down whenever they wish without consulting the author.

Traditional Book Publishing Self-Publishing
Takes 3 to 6 months for a book to be published and distributed.Publish in less than 30 minutes and start earning in 6 weeks.
Need to hire an agent to complete the process.You can publish on your own, right from your smartphone. 
While you may get an upfront advance, it has to be paid back in full with book sales before you start earning new income.You start earning from the very first sale of your book.
Lengthy and time-consuming process.It’s a 3-step process.
The publishing house will create the book cover, professionally edit, format, and market the book.You will have to do the pre-publishing duties yourself or hire experts. 
Publishers are choosy when it comes to screening books, particularly those of the new authors.You can publish whatever you want, wherever you want, to whomever you want, anytime. 
Depending upon the publishing company, you may have to pay for certain services to publish your book.Self-publishing is FREE.
Royalty is 5% to 10%.Royalty is 60% to 80%.
Minimum authoar’s involvement.Maximum author’s involvement.
Creative and financial control go to the company or agent.Creative, copyright, and financial control go to the writer. 
Books are distributed across specific platforms and regions only. Books are distributed across 40K offline and online network channels in 80+ countries. 
Publishers might reject books that are unique (in language, genre, or subject). You can publish your book in 15+ world languages, including English, Hindi, Spanish, Turkish, French, German, Urdu, Tamil, Chinese, etc.  You can also publish uniquely-themed books that cater to a smaller or specific group of readers. 
Bulk printing (Vanity printing) can increase production costs.Print on Demand (PoD) eliminates large print runs or inventory costs.
Slow to market (>2 years).Fast to market 6 to 8 months.
The publisher will make sure your book is great in all aspects. You must make sure your book is worth it in all aspects. 
More opportunities to get your book to physical bookstores. Less flexibility in getting your books to physical bookstores.

The key takeaway is that self-publishing requires grit, determination, and hardwork, just like writing a book or launching a start-up. But it can be rewarding both financially and creatively. All you need to do is execute a perfect publishing strategy and invest in only one thing – writing your book.

If you are ready to publish your book digitally, check the steps to self-publish a book with

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