As most of you know, I’ve finished writing the third book in the Forever Avalon series, The Outlander War. After almost six months of editing, I started sending it out to various publishers, trying to see if someone will take a chance on me. One rejection, and one offer, of sorts. Austin Macauley, a hybrid publisher from London, England, liked my story, my characters, and was interested in having me as one of their authors. However, since I don’t have a great track record of sales with my first two books, they offered me a “contributor contract” to pay for my novel to be published. The cost is about $3000.
I’ve spoken with many other authors I associate with online and they warned me against this. They said you shouldn’t pay to be published, it’s a scam, etc. They all say there are plenty of ways to publish for free, and that’s true. Amazon has a great site called CreateSpace that will let you put together a book as a paperback and ebook for free; but in the realm of “freebies” you’ll find that everything is not free.
You must pay an artist to design a cover, and that cost can range from $200-$400 and as high as $1,000 for an eye-catching cover. Then there’s inventory… You need to buy copies of your book to sell at book signings, etc. Then there’s marketing for your book. That costs money too. All in all, you may publish your book for free, but there are so many other costs associated with it, then why not pay someone to do it all for you.
There’s also time management issue. I have a full-time job which I must do, until my writing takes off (at least that’s what I want). I would love to be able to stay home, write, and do everything myself; but that’s not possible right now. I must work to support my family, so that means paying someone to do it all for me.
There are many negative things being said about Austin Macauley, but some positive things too. Publisher’s Weekly named them one of the fastest growing publishers in 2018. This is not something to ignore. I know that the Science Fiction Writers of America have them on their
There are too many variables to consider and, maybe I’m making the right choice, maybe not. It’s a decision that many self-published, independent authors must make each and every day. The one thing that keeps popping into my mind is that old saying: “You have to spend money to make money.”
Mark Piggott is the author of the Forever Avalon book series. Forever Avalon is available for purchase as a book/ebook at Amazon. The Dark Tides is available for purchase as a book/ebook at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iUniverse publishing. The Outlander War, Book Three of the Forever Avalon series is coming soon.
2 thoughts on “To publish or self-publish, that is the question?”
Congratulations on being picked up by a publisher. I can only imagine your struggle to go with traditional publishing. However, the book market is flooded with so many new authors with good books that the cost to be noticed can break an indie author’s bank account. Good luck I hope your new partnership brings you greater visibility and book sales. Keep your fans aware of how your book partnership is working for you.
I understand completely. I spent nearly $10,000 on my first two books on publishing and marketing, especially marketing and it didn’t pay off. Its sad when you get good reviews but not the sales. Still, I have to try to keep things moving. I’m not gonna stop writing so I’ve got to keep moving forward. Thanks for your support!