If you’re thinking about publishing your book independently, then make sure you bookmark this page. Below is a list of questions designed to help you think about all aspects of your book project upfront. The more answers you can provide in advance, the more holistic and accurate your book publishing quote will be.
Book Publishing Quote Considerations
I am currently:
- thinking about writing a single book or book series
- writing a book (book series)
- done writing a book (book series)
- already a published author
I am looking for help with:
- indexing (for non-fiction and business books)
- graphic design
- book printing (see below for important details)
- distribution (online and/or traditional)
- advertising, sales, marketing, publicity
- project management of every aspect of my book project (Related reading: What Does a Publisher Do for a Writer?)
- step-by-step instructions on how to self-publish a book instead of paying a project manager to do it all for me
I want to produce my book(s) in this format:
- ebook (e.g., Amazon’s .MOBI format, Kobo’s .EPUB format)
- paperback (perfect bound or saddle-stitched)
- case-wrapped hardcover (cloth or laminate)
- dust-jacketed cloth hardcover
- all of the above (Related reading: Book Binding: What Are Your Options?)
I envision my book selling:
- offline (through traditional “bricks and mortar” bookstores)
- offline (direct sales at speaking events, trade shows, my office or store)
- online (through Amazon, Kobo, various other ecommerce sites)
- all of the above
I am clear on how to sell my own book:
- no (Related reading: Sales Coaching for Authors online courses)
Additional Book Publishing Quote Questions
- What is the name of your book?
- Will this be a poetry, fiction, non-fiction, or children’s book? Something else altogether?
- What topic and genre (e.g., what section/category of a bookstore should your book be placed in)?
- Who is your target audience? What gender(s)? What age group(s)?
- Do you plan to sell this book or give it away free of charge?
- If you plan to sell it, have you already obtained your own ISBN? Or do you need the publishing company to obtain one for you?
- Will you require ghostwriting services to produce the content of your book? Or are you writing it yourself?
- If you’ve written it, what is the final word-count of your manuscript? (To clarify, I mean the entire word count including all front matter, body, and back matter plus your back cover copy. By having all this information upfront, you will ensure your custom quote includes proper editing and proofreading of every part of your book for consistency throughout.)
- For physical books (e.g., paperbacks, hardcovers), what final book trim size are you looking for (i.e. the standard 5″ x 8″, 5.5″ x 8.5″, or 6” x 9” trim size, or something a little more unique)?
- How many graphics will be included in the interior of your book? How about on the cover?
- Do you already have possession of those graphics (and the legal right to use them), or do you require the book publishing company to create or source them for you?
- If you require the publisher to create or source any artwork/graphics for you, what specifically are you looking for?
- Will your book’s interior be colour? Or black and white? (If colour, do you want the images to be “floating” on a white background, or will they each be a full bleed image that covers the entire page?)
- What sort of budget do you have in mind for the publication and advertising/publicity/marketing of your book? How about for printing?
- What sort of deadline (if any) do you have in mind for the completion of this book project? (Related reading: Project Timeline Template for Book Publishers)
Read These Tips Before Printing Any Books
Is book printing a good idea for independent authors? That’s a loaded question. There are many things to consider regarding cost, inventory, distribution, and even colour reproduction. How will people know where to buy the books you’ve printed? How are you going to distribute the books you’re storing? Will local bookstores inventory and sell your printed books for you?
Certainly, the above questions are far from the only ones you must answer when considering your book printing options. In 3 Book Printing Tips for Indie Authors, I discuss many more.
It’s also important to understand the role printers and publishers play in helping you design and print your book. Printers and publishers won’t make graphic design decisions on your behalf. Nor will they choose graphics or paper stock for you, without your mindful input.
Here’s one more thing printers and publishers have in common: they want to make you happy. When you’re happy, they’re happy! So, they will gladly discuss all these details with you and make recommendations if you ask them to.
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