The health crisis is probably the time to devote yourself to long-term activities and to rethink your career. In this regard, publishing a book is a promising idea. Over the past twenty years, the digital book has developed and platforms such as Amazon Kindle have become established, facilitating access to the world of publishing for authors.
In this article, we come back to the different options available to you to start an author activity by editing your book, in particular by presenting self-publishing platforms.
How to have your book edited?
In this part we discuss 3 options for editing your book.
Contact a publishing house
It’s the traditional way. You sign a publishing contract with a publishing house. By doing so, you are assigning some of your rights to your work, including rewriting, layout, adaptation, promotion, distribution and sale.
Contracts generally grant authors around 10% of the sale price, and advances are rare. Getting a contract and being published can take time, but if you do it, you will have the support of a company with its editorial know-how, promotion system and distribution network. In addition, you do not take any financial risk: the publishing house commits its own funds.
There are many publishing houses. Gallimard, Hachette, Actes Sud, for example, are among the best known, but there are a number of smaller publishing houses that need to be the focus of your attention.
Festivals and competitions are a springboard to make yourself known. Try to focus your efforts on publishers and collections that match your style and genre. For example, if you write in the fantasy or science fiction genre, take an interest in the Bragelonne publishing house, or Éditions du Bélial, as well as the Utopiales festival in Nantes, dedicated to science fiction.
Get edited with an author account
Publishing your book to an author’s account means that you yourself commit the funds necessary for the layout, printing, distribution and promotion of your works. This is an expensive option for you, but it allows you to control important points to realize your literary project: you decide on the cover, the print, and you benefit from a higher royalty on the sale of your books. In summary, you gain independence but your chances of reaching a wider audience are much less than with a conventional contract with a publishing house.
Self-edit your book
This is the option that appeals most to entrepreneurs, as it offers the most flexibility and variety. You have control over the layout, distribution, design of your cover, marketing around your book.
Self-publishing is now within the reach of serious authors, eager to publicize their book without leaving feathers. The advantage of self-publishing is that publishing an ebook is usually free. Many turnkey creation tools allow you to launch your book on the web. In terms of printing, the platforms offer different packages or simulations depending on your project. The platforms are also distinguished by the access they offer to distributors or to the referencing of your online work, and by their promotional offers.
Focus on 6 online self-publishing platforms
# 1 Publishroom Factory
Created a few years ago, Publishroom Factory has everything of a traditional publishing house. The company has extensive know-how in all aspects of online publishing. The service includes formatting the book, creating a paper book. Distribution takes place on numerous online platforms (Amazon, Kobo, Apple Books, Google Play, Fnac, etc.) as well as in physical bookstores. Finally, Publishroom Factory promotes your books through press releases, buying inserts and creating a Facebook page. You get a half-yearly report on your sales.
- A complete publishing service
- Author site included
- No commission on your sales
- A high entry price
- Proofreading is not part of the starting package
from 480 € to 590 € for the pro formula
Discover Publishroom Factory
Website creation – Personalized price estimation
Websites Are Us has developed a recommendation engine which allows you to obtain a free detailed price estimate as well as a selection of software and providers adapted to your website creation needs.
# 2 Librinova
Librinova aims to get you noticed by traditional publishers. The company prides itself on obtaining a publishing contract for 1 author in 50, thanks to its network in the book trades, from 200 online bookstores and 5000 physical bookstores. To get Librinova’s services, you need an annual subscription.
- No commission on your sales
- A moderate price for advanced service
- An author site
- Offers in stages, according to your sales objectives
- Difficult to reach sales targets
- Book formatting is extra
€ 50 / year or € 75 / year (> 45,000 words), proofreading on estimate, literary agent partnership according to your sales
# 3 Iggybook
Iggybook is a self-publishing house offering the full range of essential services at an attractive entry price. Distribution is possible on Amazon, Kobo, Cultura, Google Play, Apple Books, Fnac, and physical distribution mainly via the Hachette network. The firm offers a quarterly sales report for your printed books, and in real time for your ebooks.
- Professional and tailor-made service
- Good value for money for authors selling little
- A high commission amount compared to other platforms
Free ebook publication, € 150 for a printed book, correction and promotion extra, commission on sales 50%
# 4 Lulu
Company based in the United States, Lulu offers to publish your ebook for free from a word file. The printing is paid and made to measure. However, distribution in bookstores is not offered. The main strength of the Lulu service is its ease of use for printed books: with a few clicks on the same form, you can select the characteristics of your book (format, number of pages, type of cover, etc.) and obtain a unit price.
- Easy to use service
- The price of the ebook is free
- No author site
- SEO possibilities are limited
- No presence on the London printed book market
Free ebook, from $ 5 to $ 10 / printed book, 20% commission on sales
# 5 Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing
Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing is the Silicon Valley giant’s platform for digital publishing. With a simple and effective service, which provides digital publication on the Kindle platform, but bears the burden of promoting and distributing your ebook.
- A reference for many customers in the digital book
- Sales reporting updated every 30 minutes
- Minimum service: no proofreading, no personalized promotion
- No printing service or physical distribution
Free ebook publication, 30% commission on each sale
Discover Kindle Direct Publishing
# 6 Bookelis
Created in 2013, Bookelis offers a complete service: design of your ebook and printing of your paper book, promotion and distribution via a network of more than 5,000 bookstores, and digitally on the Fnac, Amazon, Kobo, Apple Books, Chapter and Decitre. Bookelis collects 50% of your sales but does not charge entry fees.
- A clear and tailor-made offer
- No entry fee for the ebook
- You receive 15% on physical sales, a good score compared to traditional publishers
- Promotion offers that are less extensive than on other platforms
Printing around € 5 / book, decreasing for larger orders, € 8 per month for physical distribution
In conclusion, we note that there is a wide variety of platforms. They sometimes offer the whole range of services in the book industry, sometimes only the publication and promotion of an ebook. We recommend using a hybrid approach including a printed book and an ebook.
But be careful not to be too greedy: it is wise to measure how and how many books you can sell, in a word, define your editorial project. Complete turnkey solutions like Publishroom seem interesting for an ambitious author. However, we recommend that you first publish your ebook on Kindle to estimate the engagement and purchase potential on your book.