Traditional publishing is a business agreement that a writer must thoroughly have full knowledge of, prior to opting into such agreement. With this method, writers must create a manuscript and proposal. Once, successfully completed the writer can either have an agent submit it in or they can send in the proposal on their own. Next, the proposal will then be thoroughly examined by an editor to distinguish if it is suitable to be published.

Most times, the proposal can be sent back for alterations and then must be resubmitted to the editor. At this point, the author must wait to hear back from the editor to see if it will be rejected or published. Furthermore, if the publishing company has interest in the proposal and choose to move forward with publishing your novel, they will purchase authority from you and offer you an advance and additional future royalties. The publishing company will finance all expenses for the design and supplies for the novel and will only print enough books that will actually turn over a profit.

Self-Publishing differs from traditional publishing, since the author will have sole proprietorship of their book and does not have to adhere to any contracts with publishers or publishing firms to get their book started. However, the author will be responsible for all expenses that may consist of design, printing, marketing and advertising to get their book out there.

Traditional Publishing Pros

  • Obtaining a professional publisher or publishing firm for your novel can benefit you in a major way. If they agree to offer you a book deal, this confirms you are an extraordinary author and the publishing house clearly has confirmed this as they agree to publish your book!
  • You do not have to worry about finances when choosing traditional publishing as the publishing company will take care of all the expenses for your novel.
  • Authors who choose the traditional publishing method can enhance their book brands in a significant way. Publishing houses offer effective sources for exposure to your book and can not only provide you an advancement, but you will receive future royalties when your book sells consistently.

Traditional Publishing Cons

  • When choosing the traditional publishing method, authors must have patience as it can take years to obtain an agent and publishing firm. Nonetheless, it can take months are years before your novel is finally launched.
  • When you agree to a contract with publishers you sign away your authority and rights of your novel to the publishing firm. You will generally have no control on the design, prints or anything that has to do with your novel, as it will all be up the publishing company.
  • It is important to do research on a quality and effective publishing house to ensure they can get the exposure required to take your book to the next level and bring in profits on sells. It is also essential to ensure you understand what is offered in the agreement before you sign. Most authors sign into contracts that their unaware about and put out a hefty amount of money for traditional publishing, to later find that marketing and advertising was not included in the package.



Self-Publishing Pros


  • The number one reason many authors choose self-publishing is because they are 100 percent in control of their work. They own the rights. They can edit as they see fit. They can format the book as they see fit, and they can design the cover as they see fit. They can also publish or not publish to any platform that allows self-publishing. This is usually Amazon KDP, Kobo and Barnes and Noble.

  • It’s easier to get your book published. There are no gatekeepers standing in your way. No one is going to read your book at the publishing platform and tell you that it’s not good enough to be published or that it’s not what the market wants. You decide if your book is worthy of being published.

  • You can keep a stock of your own print books. Most self-publishing platforms allow you to print author copies of your print book at cost.

  • You do not have to wait years to see your book in print. Once you deem your book worthy of being published, all you have to do is upload your materials to your desired platform, input the necessary information and click the Publish button. Your book will be available for sale in three days or less.

  • If you do find typos after your book is published, you can correct them and upload a new copy of your book without delisting or unpublishing the book. No one is going to tell you that it’s too expensive to make those changes or too much of a hassle.

  • You always have the final draft of your book. You don’t have to ask anyone to send you the file and then wait for them to send it to you or deny your request.

  • You are in control of your advertising campaigns, and you know the metrics of those campaigns instantly. There’s no waiting three to six months before you see how many books you sold.

  • You can see all your book sales as they happen. Each self-publishing platform has a graph that shows you how many books you sold that say, week, month and year, and it tells you which books are selling. there’s no guesswork as to whether or not your books are selling.

  • You will receive more money per book than a traditionally published author. Most self-published books make about $2 per ebook and at least a $1 per book on print books. You also control the amount of royalties per book you receive because you set the prices, so if you wanted to earn more than those amounts per book, you’d just raise the price.

Self-Publishing Cons


  • You have to do all the work. There’s no team of editing, marketing professionals, cover designers and layout designers unless you hire them.

  • You may not sell as many books as a traditionally published author, especially if you are not well-known. In fact, you may not sell any books if you don’t develop a marketing strategy or only rely on your friends and family to purchase your books.

  • You may publish typoed and flawed crap. When you do everything yourself with no professional help, you run the risk of publishing something that isn’t done, it's properly edited and doesn’t make sense. The good news is that you can mostly avoid this one if you edit your book many times, even after you think it’s completely done, and take the time to make sure everything in your book makes sense with the characters, plot and subplots.

  • It’s tedious. The work doesn’t stop once you finish writing, editing and proofreading your manuscript. Once you’re done with the actual book, you have to develop a cover and prepared the manuscript for publication. This can take another two or three weeks, or months if you don’t know how to design a cover and have to research how to layout a book for ebook and print publication.