Publishing a decade ago was an entirely different landscape than it is now. Hybrid publishing was a relatively new model for getting a book in front of the public. Many writers and readers were wary of hybrid publishers, thinking the books’ quality would be low. Hybrid publishing was frequently confused with self-publishing or vanity publishing. While this publishing model has been around for years, it has only been in the last decade that its potential has evolved. It now has a reputation as a good alternative to more traditional routes.
Precursors to Hybrid Publishing
Vanity publishing and self-publishing have been around almost since book printing began. In the early days of publishing, many writers yearned for the privilege of seeing their book in print. Vanity publishing usually gives writers the means to print their books, but nothing else. Vanity publishers give writers no input into the printing, cover art, quality, or editing of the book.
Self-publishing services companies are somewhat different. A self-publishing services company may offer services such as editing, cover design, and print-on-demand. A writer has more control over this but is still paying upfront for all costs. They do retain the rights to the book after it is printed. However, the writer has to register the book’s copyright and ISBN and handle all the marketing.
Early Hybrid Publishing
Vanity publishing and self-publishing services companies still thrive. But they are slowly being replaced by a better model – hybrid publishing. In the early days of hybrid publishing, many writers weren’t sure how the hybrid model differed from other non-traditional forms of publishing. However, writers soon learned that working with a hybrid publisher gave them more control and the perks of industry knowledge, marketing, and guidance.
Why It’s So Popular Today
Print-on-demand options and advances that reduce costs have contributed to the rise of hybrid publishers. It lets publishing companies offer a wide range of options to new writers at a reasonable price, opening the door to more writers than ever. The author and the publisher shared the cost of hybrid publishing, giving both sides a powerful incentive to work towards higher sales.
Writers love hybrid publishers because they focus on quality, not popularity. Major publishing houses prefer known authors and mainstream books. Hybrid publishers seek writers with a new story to tell and quality writing. Niche, non-fiction titles are produced and marketed for success by hybrid publishers. While there are upfront costs with today’s hybrid publishing, writers benefit from higher royalties than those offered by traditional publishing houses.
The Status of Hybrid Publishing
Today’s hybrid publishers offer more options than ever for first-time writers. Tailored approaches fit the needs and vision of the writer. At the same time, the writer has access to more marketing reach while keeping some control of the final product during design and printing. Hybrid publishing has established itself as a way to publish on a shorter timeline with help from experts and, with the best of hybrid publishers, access to traditional bookstore distribution. It has become a preferred method of publishing for many writers for a good reason.
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