Self Publishing or Traditional: Which is Better for You?

I thought this article by editor Lara Willard would be helpful for those of you still trying to decide which publishing way best suits you.

Lara Willard

Are you trying to decide between self-publishing or traditional publishing? Both have pros and cons! Here’s a quick summary of the differences.

Traditional publishing is about collaboration and takes time.

Self publishing is about control and costs money.


Traditional publishing pays you some thousand dollars* at the beginning and some pocket change per book once the advance is paid off.

Self publishing costs some thousand dollars to put together your publishing team, but you earn a bigger percentage of your book.

Either way, you need to market your own book if you want to be successful. Traditional publishers will handle 40–60% of your marketing. The rest is up to you. That’s why people with huge followings are easy deals. Publishers know they’ll sell books.

*The average advance for a first-time novelist is $10,000. See the link to the SFWA post for more information about small presses and vanity publishers.

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3 Responses to Self Publishing or Traditional: Which is Better for You?

  1. The link on Vanity publishing is GREAT!


  2. One of the reasons I chose to reblog this particular article from Lara Willard was the interesting links she provides in it. I’m preparing a poll about this matter (trad and self pub), but since I have yet to publish anything (be it self pub or trad pub) I have a hard time coming up with questions that will be relevant to as many viewers as possible.
    I think the about vanity presses is something we should all have handy.


  3. Pingback: Traditional Publishing, Self Publishing, or Hybrid? A Poll | For my writing journey

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