imagesTechnology has changed the shape of the publishing industry, as it has most other industries. In fact, publishing houses are feeling the tightest cinching in profits with the rise of self-publishing.

So what is self-publishing and why should any serious author even consider it? Because it is the difference between 10% and up to 70% in royalties, and a manuscript that has received proper attention prior to publishing is just as marketable as anything large publishing houses can produce. The key to success is finding the right service to create your book.

1. Make sure you have a vetted manuscript!

Nothing makes a self-published novel look sloppier than poor writing and editing. A savvy author knows that in order to create the best piece of work possible, it is important to have a fresh set of eyes look it over. Make sure this is either a professional editor (which can easily be found online these days), or another writer with experience in revision and publishing. This is a key factor to improving the overall polish of the completed manuscript, and it is often neglected by those who pursue self-publishing.

2. Find out what your market is

While many authors are not terribly knowledgeable in marketing, it is important for them to understand who the target market for the book is. There are a number of determining factors to this, including: genre, age of intended audience, setting (especially if there is a local setting involved), social issue (ex. gay, political, etc), and theme. It is important to understand who your target market is before looking for publishers, because the right publisher can help you tap into that market much more efficiently. It will save you time and resources.

3. Seek out a company to produce the book

Despite the fact that the book is self-published, it still needs to be printed by someone. As mentioned previously, it’s important to find a book publishing company that already understands your target market. It is not terribly difficult to do this. Simply look at the different books the company has produced to see if your book would be a good fit for their production. Some of these book publishing companies work well with self-publishing authors because they have a good understanding of what author needs are. A few even offer marketing packages to make the marketing campaign easier for the writer.

4. Tap into the eBook market

Neglecting every potential market can be the difference between success and failure of your book. Technology has converted books to digital files that can be carried around on smartphones, tablets, and ereaders. A serious writer needs to tap into this market or risk losing more than half of potential sales. Some book publishing companies offer this service as part of their publishing package. Other companies do not. If you choose one that does not convert the book for you, don’t despair. You can create your own eBook easily for distribution, and getting it on major sites like Amazon is easy.

Once you’ve gotten the book edited, found your market and publisher, and converted the book to an eBook, you are ready to hit the shelves and launch your marketing campaign. Self-publishing is more and more common today, and a writer with appropriate knowledge will find a path to success.