What does self-publishing cost, and is self-publishing worth it?
One of our most asked questions is, ‘How much does self-publishing cost, and is it worth it?’ It is a common question asked by many new authors or writers considering self-publishing their first book.
It’s not an easy question to answer. It’s easy to break down the costs into numbers, but is that what self-publishing is all about? If you ask, many authors making money through self-publishing their books is a nice by-product. Most of us involved in the publishing industry are happy to see our books go from an idea in our heads to physical books that we can share with people worldwide.
Speaking from personal experience, I have self-published several reasonably successful books. Are they selling millions? No. Are they selling enough to well and truly cover the costs associated with them and my other books? Yes. Would I consider myself a successful self-published author? Yes.
The questions above are very specific and geared toward you. Your reasons for writing and self-publishing a book are entirely different from someone else’s. Whether self-publishing is worth it to you is a different measurement for everyone else. In my case, it’s a resounding yes. It’s allowed me to do many other things which a traditional 9-5 job wouldn’t have allowed. It’s opened doors that I never knew could be opened.
To answer the question, is self-publishing worth it? In my opinion, yes.
What Are The Costs of Self-Publishing A Book?
A lot depends on how much you’re willing to do yourself, how much time you have to invest, how eager you’re to learn, and how professional you want the final book to look.
There are five critical steps in self-publishing a book:
- Cover Design
Writing for most authors involves no cost. On the contrary, it’s one of the most rewarding parts of the entire process. There’s nothing like writing ‘the end’ after an extensive amount of time invested in putting words and thoughts down on paper. However, if you have an idea for a book and no time or writing ability to write it, then hiring a professional ghostwriter is always an option.
How much does hiring a ghostwriter cost? It all depends on the genre, length, and how much work is involved. Most ghostwriters work on a per-word basis and are quoted per project depending on what’s needed.
Believe it or not, there are various types of editing. For example, there is proofreading, copy editing, developmental editing, and manuscript evaluations.
Good editing, like good editors, is priceless. However, the cost of professional editing services will depend on what type of editing you need, the length of your book, the genre, and how much work is involved. Editing could run anywhere from several hundred dollars to several thousand.
Once your book has been written and edited, it’s time for formatting. This is where your document is laid out in a professional format, ready to be read on a tablet or printed as a paperback or hardcover book. Again, there’s a lot of variety in professional formatting prices.
Standard fiction print and ebook formatting package prices usually start at around $350-450 for most fiction books. Non-fiction books begin at the same price but usually involve individual quotes for tables, call-out boxes, graphs, images, photos, and illustrations. Children’s book formatting packages are similar in price to fiction formatting, but it can depend on the length and complexity of the project.
#4 Cover Design
You have a few options with cover design, but my recommendation is don’t go for a budget design with your cover. There is a saying, ‘Don’t judge a book by the cover,’ but many buyers do. A poorly designed cover will turn buyers away faster than you could imagine.
The cost of a book cover could be anywhere from $50-100 to $500-1000, depending on what you’re looking for and how much you are willing to spend.
This is where you can really spend some money. How much you spend on book marketing is entirely up to you. However, there are also a bunch of free methods that you can use cleverly to promote your book. Marketing really offers you a lot of choices, but we warned some of them can be very expensive! You can also focus on your social media and book-related social media accounts such as Goodreads.
How Much Does Self-Publishing A Book Cost? – Conclusion
There you go! Everything that we could tell about the cost of self-publishing and whether self-publishing is worth it. How much you spend as a self-published author is entirely up to you and your budget.
A single book could cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to several thousand. How much you charge for that book and the royalties you receive are also entirely up to you. You could make a few dollars per book or much more.
Self-publishing allows you to open doors that you never realized were even there. It can be enriching but, at the same time, extremely expensive. At the end of the day, you’ll get out of your book what you put into it. We can all only hope that someone appreciates it as much as we do.
If you have any questions about self-publishing or have a book that requires editing or formatting, then don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Author Services Australia. We have an extraordinarily talented and experienced team that would be more than happy to work with you.