What hybrid publishing can do that other publishing models can’t.
When I hear the word hybrid publishing, I am often reminded of the tale “Goldilocks and the Three Bears.” In the modern telling, Goldilocks stumbles across a house in the forest. In the kitchen she finds three bowls of porridge. She tries the first bowl, but it is too hot. Then she tries the second bowl, but this time it is too cold. Finally, she tries the third bowl. It is neither too hot nor too cold; it is just the right temperature – and it’s delicious!
The book industry used to have just a few models: traditional publishing, self-publishing and vanity publishing. But like the old tale, the book industry has changed over the years and adapted to new times, new authors and new audiences. Hybrid publishing, as its name suggests, combines the characteristics of different publishing models. For authors wishing to publish in 2018 and beyond, this has created a new and exciting way forward.
As more and more authors find the old publishing models unsuitable, they are discovering that hybrid publishing is just right for them. So let’s talk about some of the advantages of hybrid publishing for authors today.
A Chance to Be Heard
Traditional publishing these days isn’t very inclusive and inviting. In fact, it acts more like a walled fortress and keeps many worthwhile voices out.
To be considered for publication by a traditional publisher, an author must first secure an agent, who then submits the manuscript to the publishing company for review. However, even if the traditional publisher likes the book, many companies these days won’t consider publishing it unless the author has a previous track record of publishing success or celebrity status of some kind that will guarantee sales.
Hybrid publishers, on the other hand, don’t require agents or other middlemen. They consider manuscripts on their merits and authors for their expertise. As a result, this type of submission process allows more voices to be heard and recognized for their contributions.
That said, unlike vanity presses who will print anything that an author pays for, hybrid publishers don’t accept every manuscript that walks in the door. Each hybrid publisher has their own established criteria for what they’re looking for in a book and in an author. After all, hybrid publishing is a partnership that both parties should enter into with both eyes open.
Hybrid publishers are determined to maintain their quality standards, but at the same time, to give a wider variety of authors a voice.
You Don’t Need to Go it Alone
An author may choose to write a book in a room of their own, but that doesn’t mean their only choices are handing over their book to a traditional publisher to do as the company pleases or walking the publishing road alone.
In self-publishing, the author must become an expert on everything, including book sizes, book formats, ISBNs, file production, metadata, pricing, distribution and marketing.
But in hybrid publishing, you’re not alone, you’re supported. The author and the publisher both draw upon their strengths to create a book that is worth reading and worth sharing.
With hybrid publishing, authors retain more creative control over their book and how it is presented in the marketplace than they do with traditional publishers, who will make almost all of the decisions. For example, a traditionally-published book might go to print with a book cover that the author hates, but this wouldn’t usually happen at a hybrid publisher.
As a partner in the publishing process, the author who works with a hybrid publisher is involved in how the finished book will look, feel and be perceived by the wider world.
In traditional publishing, the publisher assumes all of the financial the risk and so keeps the lion’s share of the financial reward. Traditional author royalties may be as low as 5%. But in hybrid publishing, the author receives significantly higher royalties, which can be as high as 50% or more, and shares in the success of their book’s sales.
Better Distribution, Better Exposure
Traditional publishers distribute books through a number of different channels and have established relationships with other industry professionals in order to get the books they publish the widest distribution and exposure possible.
In self-publishing, authors don’t have the built-in infrastructure that traditional publishers do. Like with other aspects of the publishing process, self-publishing authors must learn to handle everything on their own, including distribution. While their efforts are admirable, the results aren’t typically what the author had hoped for.
Vanity presses make their money from authors and not from book sales, so their distribution efforts are typically quite limited.
Hybrid publishers though, like traditional publishers, are publishing professionals who want to sell books. They’ve made it their business to distribute books and approach audiences in the right way. Hybrid publishers have established distribution channels and industry relationships that get the books they publish the widest distribution and exposure possible.
A Trusted Hybrid Publisher
Dudley Court Press is a hybrid publisher who works with authors to publish meaningful books. For more information about hybrid publishing, what we do for authors and their books, and our publishing process, please get in touch at publisher@DudleyCourtPress.com or check out our newest online coaching programs: Writer’s Sprint, Memoir Writing Made Easy and Aspiring Author to Published Pro.