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Many self-publishers start their book projects with unrealistic expectations and misunderstandings about how publishing works. A huge industry has arisen to prey on writers who are unsure of the path. This article explains the basics of how publishing scams work and how writers can avoid them.
Publishers must learn the risks inherent to their business. Editorial and Production Costs Production costs are an essential aspect of bringing a well-made book to market.
Every writer pays for quality in the short run or for shortcuts in the long run. Every publisher must pay for ink and paper, and I hope for editing and design.
Editors and designers are part of the essential supply chain that results in ready-to-retail books. The professionals who make their living providing printing, cover design, editing, typesetting, and binding can quite reasonably be expected to earn a profit.
Knowing where that money comes from is important. Distribution and Sales Costs Additional costs include shipping, distribution, and seller commissions which usually run half of cover price.
These costs occur after your book is made available to the public and an order is placed.
Do you know what it costs to sell one copy of your book? Publishers are investors who buy and sell intellectual property for profit.
Your publisher thinks your book will sell and has paid for editing, design, marketing, printing, and distribution on top of your advance. Your publisher is gambling on making enough profit on book sales to cover your production costs and your advance—before they see a dime.
Publishers certainly care that your book is good, but they mostly care whether your book will sell. Many a traditionally published author has wondered why nothing came in after the initial advance.
Your publisher is in business, too. After investing in you, they expect to recover their outlay before they skip merrily down the profit sharing road with you. Read more about returns here. How Publishing Scams Work Vanity publishing scams usually target first-time publishers.
Most have a rough draft manuscript ready and have begun to ask questions about how to publish. They need editing, typesetting, design, and distribution.
A web search soon brings them to xUniverseHouse who offers one-stop shopping for all the needed services and a distribution package. They offer a platinum plan, a gold plan, a silver plan, and a tin plan with services that fit any budget. Most authors have heard all the bad doo doo about self-publishing.
Why should it earn a royalty from it?
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Paying someone to be your publisher is like hiring someone to take a vacation for you so you can stay home and work. The contract says you can get out at any time. But the small print says the cover art and the typesetting and other digital assets belong to xUniverseHouse.
Your publishing partner may be able to invest sweat equity or access outsourced services at a reduced cost, but you should understand the value of those services. Install some quality control measures. Do you retain the right to approve the cover design?
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