Another Publishing Model – A Community of Authors

Creating an Author’s Community.

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned I would be introducing some Christian publishers I believe are trustworthy and have valuable approaches to offer authors for their books.

So here’s some information about another one of those hybrid publishers who provides authors with a wide range of services, even before they’ve finished writing their book.

They start from this statement about their company: “Your message is our mission.”

To me the distinctive of this publisher is that as their company grew, they realized there were many more people who wanted to write, so they also started writing conferences and sponsoring author training at industry events. As a mere observer, I could see a supportive and collegial atmosphere as the publisher began creating a community where new authors feel encouraged and supported.

When a client contacts them with a book idea, a book draft, or a polished manuscript, they are able to work with the author and help encourage them and provide the services they need. Other publishers do similar things. There are fees involved with these services, but they are not exorbitant and authors with whom I’ve spoken are grateful to have a publisher recommend a reputable service provider for things like editing, manuscript development, even various marketing services.

Recently I spoke with one of their authors who was happy to recommend them. She said: “You want someone you can trust.”

She also praised their approach.

“I didn’t need them to do everything for me,” the author explained, “because I know a lot of people who work in the industry and could handle, for example, my cover design. They gave me the option to say, ‘This is what I need.’

“They also show exactly what they do and I can know what it’s going to cost.”

And that’s part of the description of a hybrid publisher.

A hybrid publisher provides a wide range of services and above all guidance to help an author decide what services they need.

The way I understand it, hybrid publishing is somewhere between traditional publishing, and self-publishing.

In self-publishing, the author controls everything but also has to figure out everything in a complicated process they probably have never been through before. And typically find expensive. As you can imagine, sometimes the efforts aren’t as successful as the author had hoped. The author realizes with regret that some of those seemingly unneeded and costly steps would have been a good idea.

In traditional publishing, you may have heard it called royalty publishing, the company pays the author an advance and pays for everything else to get the book published (editing, design, printing, distribution), but in return gets the rights to the book. If you sell enough you are paid a royalty, or a percentage beyond your advance.

Some of you may be wondering about traditional publishing. You no doubt have heard it’s hard to get noticed, and at the recent book industry trade show I attended I chatted with some folks involved in acquisition (that’s acquiring new books) for a traditional publisher. They confirmed they will generally not accept a manuscript without it being presented by an agent, with one exception. Representatives of publishers attend writers conferences sponsored by independent writers organizations and they do this to find new authors. It’s possible at some writers conferences to get appointments with publishers and authors agents to present your book idea. From there, that may lead to a contract with a traditional publisher.

But if you are sure you want to get your book published and can invest in this yourself, hybrid publishing may be the right route for you and your book project.

In hybrid publishing, each author has a custom-designed contract that suits their needs.

As I mentioned before, I don’t name the publishers I’m profiling because I’m not speaking for their company. But I’m happy to tell you more about them if you contact me. By the way, the company I have been writing about started their publishing company to serve women, who still make up the majority of their authors, but increasingly now also serve men.

Let me know if I can help you connect with them or be of other assistance to you.

Joni Sullivan Baker
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