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Visit the active LitNet platform at www.litnet.co.za


 
Nuwe skryfwerk | New writing > Skryfsake | Writing matters > English

Questions to ask if you are considering self-publishing


Centre for the Book - 2006-10-19

 

  1. Can you identify a target market that would be interested in your book?
  2. Have you spent some time looking at books that are similar in some way to your planned book? (Could be similar in format, length, content, etc.)
  3. How will you draw the attention of your target market to your book?
  4. Have you finalised your manuscript?
  5. Have you had your manuscript edited?
  6. Have you had you had your manuscript proof-read?
  7. Who is doing the layout? Remember, the more professional it is the better your book will compete with books that have been published by larger publishers.
  8. Have you put thought into cover design? Once again, the more professional it is the better your book will compete. Consider getting professional advice on this.
  9. Printers’ quotes - have you given different printers the same specs?  (Otherwise you will not be comparing apples with apples.)
  10. Is your print run a sensible one? If you are publishing a book yourself it is much more sensible to use digital printing and to reprint if you find there is a demand. A reasonable print run for a self-published book is about 300 to 400 max. Some titles should even have lower print runs - poetry for example. Attractive per unit costs change into very unattractive per unit costs if you have to store them for 10 years before you throw them away. With digital printing you can even print 50 or 100 copies.
  11. Who will do your distribution?

All of these and other questions are dealt with in more detail in A rough guide to small-scale and self-publishing published by the Centre for the Book and on our South African Small Publishers’ Blog http://thesouthafricansmallpublishersblog.wordpress.com/