Posted on April 3, 2014



It’s a different world these days for someone wanting to get published. Some say traditional publishing (repeated efforts to snag a deal with a publishing house) is out of date. Self-publishing, by contrast, is a more approachable way for unknown writers to have their works read and get paid for it.

It used to be that self-publishing was a means to be avoided: Real writers didn’t self-publish.  Today, that is no longer the case. Best-sellers are rising up from the self-publishing sector like never before, signaling writers everywhere that this may be their chance at publication.

Rather than send query after query and face numerous rejections, it is now possible to sidestep all the drudgery. The shortened production process is reason enough for consideration. Don’t want to wait a year or more to see your book in print? Self-publishing can get you there faster.

Increased profit is another factor to weigh. Commercial publishers, once they’ve decided to work with you, will often offer only a small percentage in royalties. If you go the self-publishing route (cut out the middleman), and your book becomes a considerable success, that’s a huge profit for you—because you never had to settle for a measly, fractional percentage.

Another great advantage is having the freedom to choose the direction your book will take. You call the shots. You own all the rights. You get to choose the cover and the title. That kind of liberty is hard to find with traditional publishers.

What if you’ve written a book that doesn’t necessarily fit under any of the popular genres? Mari Selby of the San Francisco Book Review explains, “Traditional publishers may not take an interest in your book if it is topic-specific. They may feel the demand is not great enough to warrant a large press run. However, your book may fill a niche that has not been met, and you can ‘test the waters’ with short-run printing.” She adds that “even without being a huge hit self-published authors can create a springboard to traditional publishing…Once the marketability of your book has been proven, [publishers] may be eager to take it off your hands.”   (

A knowledge of what genres see the most success in self-publishing can be helpful to the writer. The most popular genres are romance, thriller, fantasy, action-adventure, horror, history, science fiction, and biography. From compiled sources, Don Harold of reveals that romance fiction makes up half of the total sales of self-published books. E.L. James’ Fifty Shades is testament to how powerful the romance genre is on the market. He also acknowledges that Douglas Prestons’ horror Relic was one of the top 10 best-selling, self-published books in that genre, and that Matthew Mather’s self-published CyberStorm achieved enormous success in the science fiction arena (

Once the writer has decided that self-publishing is for him/her, it’s time to discover just how it’s done. There is self-publishing in the strictest sense: the writer does everything his or herself. He or she will oversee every step in the publication process. This requires a lot of work, but the pay-off is that the writer has complete control. Another route to take is to choose one of the many available online services and self-publishing houses. These are able to guide a writer through those stages of publication the writer may not be familiar with. One such example of a self-publishing company is Asta Publications, which works with corporations, entrepreneurs, and individuals.

As the writer delves into self-publishing, he or she will find that there are many different formats involved. Aside from traditional printed books, e-books are growing in popularity with readers and authors alike. Kindles and iPads are two very popular reading devices and read certain types of e-book formatting, such as the E-pub. It can be displayed on most eReaders, says Gary Smailes of BubbleCow, including the Apple iPad, Nook, Sony Reader, and others. ( Kindle uses Mobi, a similar format.

Self-publishing is certainly emerging as a more accessible means to publication than traditional means. This accessibility is key for the individual already bogged down by day-to-day living. If you are a busy writer, or simply want a more affordable, faster way to publish and retain control of your book, self-publishing may be worth a shot for you.

Further Reading:

  1. Readers’ Favorite:
  2.  Live Write Thrive
  3. Authority Publishing:
  4. CompletelyNovel:
  5. Kindle Direct Publishing:

Chelsey Edwards, Writer and Editor, Asta Publications

Asta Publications has a long history of helping writers tell their stories and get published. Since 2004, Asta Publications has helped hundreds of authors bring their book concepts to life and we are ready to help you too! Our dedication to our authors is unmatched. We deliver first-class products and services that are accurate, high quality, and exceed our authors’ expectations.


Posted in: Publishing