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How to Publish a Book

How to Publish a Book: The Ultimate Guide

So you’ve finished writing your book—perhaps a lifelong dream—and now you want to get it published.

Where do you go from here?

You poured your heart and soul into the writing, and I hope you also spent countless hours editing and revising.

Any seasoned expert will tell you: All writing is rewriting.

Certainly the writing alone took months, maybe years. But you did something few people ever do: You finished writing your book .

Maybe you’ve done your homework on the do’s and don’ts of publishing a book, but you’ve found so much conflicting advice that you’re overwhelmed.

How do you decide your next step?

I’ll give you my best advice from 40+ years in the publishing business.In this post, you’ll learn:

In simple terms, you have two options:

1—Traditional publishing


Which is best for you?

As one who has written and had published nearly 200 books since the 1970s, let me try to help you decide.

I’ll start with definitions so you know what you’re actually choosing.

How to self-publish a book

In this scenario, a book publishing company offers you a contract for the right to publish your book. The publisher owns the copyright and you earn royalties from sales.In exchange, they pay for everything from editing, proofreading, typesetting, printing, binding, cover art and design, promotion, advertising, warehousing, shipping, billing, and more.Traditional publishers take all the risks.

If a “publisher” requires any money from you—even a minimum number of copies purchased—they are not a traditional publisher.

They might refer to themself as a co-op or a hybrid publisher, and they might even insist that they accept some manuscripts and reject others , but they are not traditional publishers.

Note that even if you get a publishing deal, it’s never hands-off. You will still have to share in marketing and promotional activities.

The Pros of Traditional Publishing

The Cons of Traditional Publishing

Regardless what services or suppliers you use to have your book printed, this option is rightly referred to as self-publishing.

Why? Because everything is on you. You are the publisher, the financier, the decision-maker, and the creator.Everything listed above under Traditional publishing falls to you. You decide who does it, you approve or reject their work, and you pay for it.

The term self-publishing is a bit of a misnomer, however, because what you’re paying for is not publishing, but printing. So, the question becomes, why pay to be printed if you could be paid to be published ?

The Pros of Self-Publishing

The Cons of Self-Publishing

Whichever method you choose, there are a few steps that every author must take to get published.

 Finish your first draft

Obvious? Yes — but few people ever achieve this .

 Come up with a great title

Start with a working title, but don’t finalize it until your first draft is complete.

 Get feedback and editing

Separate yourself from the competition and make sure your book is the best it can be . Agents and publishers reject manuscripts that need too much work.

 Get a great cover

Your book’s cover is your most important marketing tool. Your publisher knows what sells. If you’re self-publishing, invest in a professional designer.

 Write a strong book description

A good cover makes readers curious enough to pick up your book. Your book’s description will seal the deal.

 Format your manuscript

Poor formatting makes you look like an amateur, so do this right. Check out the recommendations in my guide, How to Write a Book .

 Create a launch plan

Your launch plan helps to build excitement and sell as many books as possible once it’s released. Your publisher will help with this, but they won’t do everything. Prepare Advance Reader Copies (ARCs) and reach out to your email list, your colleagues, and any influencers you know to ask them to submit reviews to Amazon or Apple Books during launch week.

 Market your book

Your work doesn’t stop after your book is published – it’s only just begun. Have a plan that will help you promote your books on an ongoing basis. Need help writing your novel? Click here to download my ultimate 12-step guide.

How much does it cost to publish a book

Some say writers can make a lot more money by self-publishing. They argue that rather than settling for just a 15% or so royalty of the sales by a traditional publisher, they enjoy all the profits.

The problem with this logic is that it too often underestimates what it costs to self-publish.

The likelihood is that the “profit” per sold book, often at best, equals about the same as a traditional royalty.

The drawback then is that as a self-publisher, you have vastly less experience promoting, advertising, marketing, selling, delivering, and billing than traditional publishers do.

Besides the fact that this is a full-time job that will likely rule out your having the time to write another book, with rare exceptions, traditional publishers sell many more copies than self-publishers do.

That said, self-publishing may be your choice under certain circumstances. Such as:

In truth, there are many reasons you might opt to self-publish, so the issue becomes whom you can trust as a supplier for all the services you’ll be paying for.

That’s where you need to do your homework. Talk to others who have self-published to see whether they felt ripped off, over-promised, over-charged, etc.

Many vanity or subsidy or hybrid self-publishing suppliers have beautiful websites, rave reviews, and examples of beautifully produced books that will make your mouth water.

They’ll use terms like, “If we accept your manuscript…” when the truth is, many such firms would print anything you sent them as long as your check was attached.

They’ll offer all the services I listed above, but if you decide not to take advantage of those, you’ll pay less but also wind up with an inferior final product.

That’s why too many self-published books look self-published:

But those are the least of the potential issues.

With careful planning, studying, and comparing, you should be able to self-publish your book for much less than the $10,000 or more that many of these companies charge for their “premium” packages.

How Much Does it Cost to Publish a Book?

As mentioned above, if you go the traditional route, your publisher will cover all related costs.

You’ll save time and energy — and also avoid a steep learning curve.

If you’re self-publishing, you’ll pay out of pocket. Your costs can vary widely depending on the types of services you need, your genre, and more.

Plan to set aside at least $3,000-$5,000 for everything.

You can find estimates for professional services here , as well as four authors’ actual book publishing costs .

How To Publish a Children’s Book

If you dream of becoming a children’s author — or of publishing children’s versions of your adult books — the process is similar.

But there are enough differences to make it worthwhile to learn specifically about the children’s book market and how to publish a children’s book. It’s highly competitive, largely because four-color illustrations are the most expensive printing there is.

However, the market is growing quickly and it’s highly rewarding. Learn how to write a children’s book and submit it to publishers .

Are the Odds Against Traditional Publishing too Great?

Few traditional publishers accept unsolicited manuscripts, but that doesn’t mean they don’t consider new writers and their work.

They accept submissions from agents — who are always on the lookout for the next great book or author — or from writers recommended to them by one of their current authors .

I’ve been coaching writers for decades, so I’m well aware of the confusion, the desperation, and the frustration you may be feeling.

Pursuing a traditional book deal takes:

Which is why I wrote this roadmap to the publishing process.

By the end, I want you confident and clear about which route to choose when publishing your book—and you’ll know the steps to take.

Deciding your publishing path

We’re in the busiest and noisiest era in publishing history. It has never been easier to get printed , and never harder to be traditionally published .

But don’t let that discourage you.

Getting a literary agent or a publisher to take a chance on you or your manuscript does not happen by accident. It requires time, focus, and excellence.

Begin by considering:

Picthing to a Traditional Publisher

If you’re a nonfiction writer you’ll want to submit a book proposal that includes a brief, one- or two-sentence synopsis (summary) of each chapter, plus three sample chapters.

A first time fiction writer is expected to submit a complete manuscript for consideration.

1. Edit Like Your Writing Life Depends On It, Because It Does

The most important step as you begin is to become a ferocious self-editor. Even if you choose to self-publish, the quality of your writing is determined by this.

Acquisition editors (first readers at publishing houses who decide whether your manuscript is worth showing to their bosses) and literary agents tell me they know within two minutes or as few as two pages whether your manuscript is worth pursuing.

That may not sound fair, but it’s the hard truth. If you wished they would have stuck with it till you got to the good part, next time start with the good part. 😊

All writing is rewriting. Put your best foot forward by learning to aggressively self-edit until you’re happy with every word.

If an agent decides to take you on and/or your manuscript is accepted by a publishing house, it will still go through editing there.

But your goal is to make it the best you know how so it will get past those first readers—potential agents or acquisition editors.

2. Determine your genre

You need to know where your book will sit on bookstore shelves and how it will be categorized in online marketplaces like Amazon. This lets your ideal readers find you and tells Amazon how to promote you.

Knowing your genre is also critical when you start pitching agents, because not all agents represent all genres. If you send your memoir to an agent who’s only interested in business topics or romance, you’ll get an automatic rejection.

3. Find An Agent

Landing an agent can be just as difficult as landing a publishing deal, because they are every bit as discerning regarding a manuscript’s (or an author’s) potential.

The advantage of an agent (which makes them worth their 15% of whatever you make) is that they serve as your manuscript’s cheerleader.

Agents know the business, the industry, the players—who’s publishing what and who might like what you’ve written.

They shop your manuscript to publishers and advocate on your behalf. Having landed an agent is a credit in itself.

It shows that you and your writing have already survived serious vetting.

Some (but not many) traditional publishers consider unsolicited or unagented manuscripts, but if you can land an agent, that’s your best bet.

Having an agent can make your life a lot easier. They can:

Once you’ve researched and compiled a list of agents who seem to be a good fit, follow their submission guidelines to a T. (Google literary agents.)

4. Write A Query Letter

A query (question) letter is designed to determine whether an agent or publisher might be interested in your manuscript. It’s your first impression—your initial sales call.

Make it stimulating and intriguing.

You’re not selling your writing just yet; you’re merely asking to get in the door.

Position yourself as a colleague, not a fan. Make it short and to the point, preferably one page, and send electronically.

Before you hit Send, proofread your letter. Then proofread it again.

While up to a half dozen typos in a 300-400-page manuscript are of little consequence, any typo in such a short document will make you look like an amateur.

Have a friend or relative proofread it with fresh eyes.

5. Write your proposal or send your manuscript

These are the documents agents want.

If you’re writing nonfiction, your proposal is often the only document they require before asking to see your manuscript.

If you’re writing fiction, agents will request either a partial or a full manuscript.

Every word should pique an agent’s interest—your goal is an invitation to send your entire manuscript.

Briefly but completely describe the details of your manuscript. Leave nothing out.

For nonfiction, include every issue you cover and the basics of what you’ve said about each.

For fiction, synopsize every chapter.

Proposals can contain any number of components, including:

The average proposal can range from between 10 to 25 pages. Keep it as tight as you can without leaving out anything crucial.

Which is best, a query or a proposal?

As a rule, a query letter precedes sending either a proposal or a full or partial manuscript. But check potential agents’ submissions guidelines on their websites

Some want to start with your proposal. Show them you’re thorough and willing to work.

Getting Self-Published

The biggest mistake many self-published authors make is spending more on design and marketing than on professional editing and proofreading.

A great looking book with a terrific cover and lots of promotion will die a quick death in the market unless the editing and proofreading are also evident.

Resist the urge to hire a relative who majored in English or even teaches English; book editing is a unique discipline.

The last thing you want is a handsome product that reads like the manuscript made the rounds of the traditional publishing houses, was rejected, and had to be self-published.

Writing quality sets you apart in a saturated marketplace. Amazon is by far the biggest player for self-publishers, so it’s worth your while to learn how to publish a book on Amazon .

Engaging a Self-Publishing Company vs. Doing It Yourself

Many companies offer all the services you need to self-publish, but some are more trustworthy than others. It takes a lot of success—and sales—to recoup the costs of such services.

You may run across the term “hybrid publishing,” referring to different pay-to-publish methods, but the bottom line is that it’s still self-publishing.

As I’ve said, you are the publisher. You pay the bills.

My friend Jane Friedman’s helpful article, What is a Hybrid Publisher? , explains this in detail.

In short, hybrid publishing companies claim to combine the best of a traditional publishing house with a self-publishing model. But beware.

Many of these are wolves in sheep’s clothing. Again, do your homework, get references, compare pricing. The more popular platforms to “publish” online:

Other considerations for self-published titles (unless you’ve hired someone to navigate this process):

But hear me: Please exhaust all efforts to be traditionally published before resorting to self-publishing.

If you are fortunate enough to have your manuscript accepted by a traditional publishing house, they assume all the financial risk, so it costs you nothing.

Should you choose self-publishing, the cost varies greatly. You can “publish” virtually free online if you don’t engage an editor, proofreader, or designer.

Self-publishing actual books can range from between $1,500 and more than $10,000, depending on how many services you require or which company you hire.

I’ve made it my life’s work to coach writers to get their work to a level where they can market it to traditional publishers. Even if you choose self-publishing, you want your writing up to that standard.

A great starting point? My 21 Ferocious Self-Editing Tips Checklist can turn you into an aggressive self-editor and give your writing the best chance to impress industry gatekeepers.

Regardless whether you choose to compete for a traditional publishing deal or self-publish, give everything you have to your writing.

Hone your skills . Read everything you can get your hands on about the craft.

Your reader deserves it.

And so do you.

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Just tell me where to send it:

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Last updated on Feb 07, 2023

The 17 BEST Self-Publishing Companies of 2023

Deciding to self-publish your book is both exciting and nerve-wracking. Once your book has been edited , designed , and you have a marketing plan in place, you still have to figure out how you'll publish and distribute your work — the number of options available is so large that it can be a bit overwhelming.

There are a lot of companies out there advertising their services to self-publishing authors. Some of them are reputable but many of them are vanity presses looking to take advantage of aspiring authors . 

In this article, we’ll guide you through the 17 best self-publishing companies in the industry to see which ones you might want to work with — depending on the book you’ve written. And don't forget to grab a free book launch checklist while you're at it to make sure that you're checking off all  of the boxes before the big day!

publishing books


Reedsy’s Book Launch Checklist

Launch your book successfully with our tried-and-true strategies.

Ebook Distributors

The beauty of ebook publishing is that any author can upload and launch their books without any outside help. Broadly speaking you can take two approaches to this process:

When you’re publishing an ebook, regardless of the approach, you’ll get to keep the lion’s share of the profits. Most retailers and aggregators will only take a cut of the royalties once a copy of your book is sold.

But what’s best for your book will depend on your personal situation. So, first, we recommend taking this quick 1-minute quiz that will help point you towards the best self-publishing company for you.

Which self-publishing company is right for you?

Find out here! Takes one minute.

That said, if you want to get an overview of the ebook publishing landscape then read on! 

Let's start with the four most prominent book retailers . Book retailers are the stores through which you’ll actually sell your book to the public — which means that they’re pretty important as far as your self-publishing ambitions are concerned! Like we mentioned before, each retailer offers its own ebook publishing platform for authors to upload their books. Where they differ is in the cut that they take of your royalties and their exclusivity programs.

1. Amazon KDP

Amazon KDP self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: Free to upload 💸 Royalties: 70% on ebooks priced between $2.99 and $9.99 OR 35% if priced below $2.99

Amazon is the titan of online bookstores — accounting for 74% of U.S. ebook sales in 2015 — it is the world's biggest seller of digital volumes. It's no wonder Amazon is often the first retailer authors consider to sell their titles.

Kindle Direct Publishing ( KDP ) is Amazon’s self-publishing platform (not to be confused with " Amazon Publishing " — their division that operates like a traditional publisher). Any author can self-publish using KDP, though you’ll need to do it manually yourself.

Note that Amazon KDP is not the same as Amazon KDP Select. KDP Select is Amazon’s exclusivity program — meaning that, if you choose to enroll in it, you can only sell your book on Amazon. In exchange for this, Amazon will give you:

If you’ve researched these perks and decided that KDP Select is the route for you, then there’s no need to read the rest of this post, as you’ve essentially agreed not to use any other self-publishing company 🙂 Instead, you can familiarize yourself with the KDP Select program with these resources:

2. Apple Books

Apple Books self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: Free to upload 💸 Royalties: 70% on most books

Another big name that everyone should know, Apple founded its self-publishing arm in 2010. In 2012, Apple announced that 400 million books were downloaded on Apple Books (though it’s important to note that the number of downloads differs from the number of books sold , as The Digital Reader clarifies in this post ). Though Amazon has far eclipsed it as the foremost ebook reading platform since then, Apple Books still gets a fair amount of eyes.

While figuring out ways to monetize a book on Apple Books might be a challenge, it’s much easier to actually publish one. Using iBooks Author, self-publishing authors can quite easily upload their titles onto Apple Books, all without having to pay a fee!

publishing books


How to Self-Publish a Book

Learn to set yourself up for success as an indie author.

3. Barnes & Noble Press

Barnes and Noble Press self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: Free to upload 💸 Royalties: 70% on ebooks priced above $0.99

As you might expect, Barnes & Noble Press (formerly known as NOOK Press) is the self-publishing platform belonging to the big box bookseller. It has pretty infamously struggled for market share against Amazon. However, as far as interfaces are concerned, B&N Press is easy to use — and, similar to the other big retailers, it’s free to upload your book. Exclusivity is not required to publish with B&N Press.

It’s important to note that you can set your book for free on this platform. What’s more, Barnes & Noble is still working on innovating and adding new features for self-published writers. In January 2021, B&N Press introduced an ad portal to help new authors to create marketing campaigns on the Barnes & Noble website for their books. Check out this page for more information on self-publishing on B&N Press.

4. Rakuten Kobo

Kobo self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: Free to upload 💸 Royalties: 70% on ebooks priced more than $2.99 in the U.S. OR 45% for books priced below $2.99

Rakuten Kobo is the last big retailer that you should know. It’s a Canadian company (that’s a subsidiary of the Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten) — as such, it’s got a strong reach in the international ebook market. Kobo is only the #5 store in terms of market share in the U.S., though it’s growing year by year.

If you're hoping to reach readers outside of the U.S., Kobo is a strong candidate. Kobo's self-publishing arm, Kobo Writing Life, is simple and free to use. It also comes with several perks, including exclusive promotion opportunities, if you choose to distribute through Kobo and not an aggregator.

Speaking of aggregators… if you’re getting a migraine just thinking about uploading your book onto all of these different book retailers by yourself, then perhaps aggregators are what you’re looking for.

Aggregators collect and manage all of these markets: pushing your book to each retailer and centralizing it all into one sales report. With a single upload to, say, Draft2Digital, your book would be on sale on Amazon, B&N Press, Apple Books, Kobo — and even smaller retailers.

Then you’ll be able to track your sales across all of these retailers through the aggregator’s interface, receiving monthly royalty checks. In exchange for this service, an aggregator will take an additional cut of your royalties — which means that this route is for anyone who wants to quickly save on time and doesn’t mind paying extra.

How much will it cost you to self-publish?

Find out here! Takes 30 seconds.

5. Draft2Digital

Draft2Digital self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: 10% of the book’s retail price per copy sold 📇 Distributes to: Amazon, Apple Books, Barnes & Noble, Google Play Books , Kobo, Playster, Tolino, OverDrive, Scribd, Bibliotheca — more info here

If you decide to use an aggregator, Draft2Digital is the one that we recommend at Reedsy. Why’s that? Lots of factors, including excellent customer support, a user-friendly dashboard, and a sleek website design. Not to mention the extra perks that D2D packs into the deal: they do the formatting for you . D2D also:

Add the fact that it distributes to all of the major ebook stores, and you’ve pretty much got the whole package in Draft2Digital.

6. Smashwords

Smashwords self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: 15% of the retail price on Smashwords and 10% on other platforms per copy sold 📇 Distributes to: Apple Books, Barnes & Noble, Scribd, Kobo, Blio, the Smashwords store — more info here

The original aggregator, Smashwords was the undisputed king in town until Draft2Digial entered the picture. However, Smashwords is still very popular today.

On a simple side-by-side comparison, Smashwords and Draft2Digital offer similar pricing structures and royalties. Where Smashwords falls short is in terms of its user experience — you need to do the formatting yourself on Smashwords, which definitely isn’t a piece of cake. Smashwords also does not distribute books to Amazon . That said, outside of Amazon, it’s got a slightly more extensive distribution network than Draft2Digital, so if you want to sell your book to smaller retailers, this might work. Kindlepreneur's Dave Chesson wrote an in-depth take on the differences between Smashwords and Draft2Digital, which you can read here .

7. PublishDrive

PublishDrive self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: 10% of the retail price per copy sold OR subscription pricing 📇 Distributes to: Amazon, Apple Books, Google Play, Barnes & Noble, Scribd, OverDrive, Playster, Odilo, Bookmate — more info here

PublishDrive might be the new kid on the block, but it’s definitely made the most of its time. Founded in 2015, it works with over 4,500 publishers and can now connect you to over 400 stores. It’s got all the workings of the other aggregators: a modern interface and regular sales reports to keep you up-to-date on your profits. What sets PublishDrive apart from the pack are:

8. StreetLib

Streetlib self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: 10% of the retail price per copy sold 📇 Distributes to: Amazon, Google Play, Apple Books, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Scribd, OverDrive, Indigo, Baker & Taylor — more info here

Another international distributor, StreetLib gives you even more options if you’re aiming to reach an international audience. It’s got a strong presence in Latin America and Europe, to the extent that its dashboard can be configured in English, Italian, Spanish, Hindi — and more! One other case in point for its international strength: in January 2019, it began offering its services for authors in Egypt.

Originally founded in Europe, StreetLib is certainly great for international distribution, but if your plan is to include the U.S. and U.K. as well, it's also got your back. As of April 2019, it distributes books to all major Western stores.

XinXii self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: 30% of net sales for books priced more than $2.49 OR 60% for works between below $2.48 📇 Distributes to: Amazon, Hugendubel, Angus & Robertson, Thalia, Buecher, Whitcoulls, Indigo, Kobo, Livraria Cultura, Kobo, Scribd — more info here

XinXii isn’t actually Chinese — it’s based in Berlin. (Surprise!) As such, it offers authors foreign distribution channels that might not be readily available elsewhere. Note that it’s got a particularly strong presence in Germany, Switzerland, and Austria. However, its customer support could be found wanting, and its user interface is a bit on the clunky side: trade-offs that the author will need to make to conduct business with XinXii.

Author Services for Self-Publishing Authors

Now, if you haven’t gotten as far in the publishing process as the actual publishing bit, and you’re still concerned with the editing, design, and formatting of your book, then perhaps the companies above don’t quite match what you’re looking for. Thankfully, there’s one place where you can access world-class talent to take care of all three — and you’re already there 😉.

publishing books

💰 Pricing: Average costs here 🖋️Services: Editing, interior design, cover design, illustrations, and more.

A marketplace for freelance publishing professionals, Reedsy is where authors can connect with editors and designers with years of relevant experience in traditional publishing. Each professional sets their own rate — you can get quotes from up to five of them a time and find the ones that best suit your needs and budget. 

In addition to the marketplace, Reedsy has a book formatting tool that allows any author to quickly create a professional-grade ebook and print book file — at no cost whatsoever. 

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The Reedsy Book Editor

Format your manuscript for print or EPUB with a single click.

Print-on-Demand Services for Self-Publishing Authors

While most self-publishing authors will rely on the ebook market for most of their sales, that doesn’t mean they should overlook the printed book. After all, there’s nothing quite like holding a beautifully designed paperback in your hand! And with print-on-demand technology that allows for copies to be produced only when they’re purchased, almost any indie author can put a paperback up for sale — without breaking the bank.

If that sounds good to you, then here’s a quick look at some of the major players in POD.

11. KDP Print

💰 Pricing: Learn more here 📇 Distributes to: Amazon (naturally), others through Expanded Distribution .

Formerly known as CreateSpace , Amazon’s own print-on-demand service has the benefit of sharing Kindle Direct Publishing’s platform. Authors already selling ebooks on KDP can easily launch a print edition by uploading a formatted PDF and cover design with a spine and a back. With KDP’s Expanded Distribution option, authors can sell to shops and libraries across the globe — though it’s important to note many booksellers are inclined to order through Amazon.

12. IngramSpark

IngramSpark self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: Learn more here 📇 Distributes to: Amazon, Apple Books, Barnes & Noble, Follett, EBSCO, Booktopia, Kobo, Zola Books, 24Symbols, Bookmate

IngramSpark, owned by Ingram, the biggest book wholesaler in the world. If your focus is on getting your book into brick-and-mortar stores, it’s worth setting your book up with this company (perhaps in addition to KDP Print, which you can use to sell your book on Amazon). For more info, read our IngramSpark review .

publishing books

Book Marketing 101

Learn seven tried-and-true strategies for boosting book sales.

Blurb self-publishing company

💰 Pricing: Learn more here

📇 Distributes to: Amazon, Apple Books, the Blurb bookstore

Blurb is one of the most well-known and trusted print-on-demand services out there. We particularly recommend it for visual works — such as magazines and photo books. For an in-depth evaluation of its user-friendliness and pictures of the quality of its printed books, go to this review .

14. BookBaby

💰 Pricing: Learn more here 📇 Distributes to: Amazon, Google Play, Vearsa, Apple Books, Kobo, Bookshop, Barnes & Noble, Powell’s Books, Books-A-Million

Boasting an easy-to-use interface and reliable customer service, BookBaby is an option for many first-time self-publishing authors. To learn more about BookBaby, go to this review .

Marketing Services for Self-Publishing Authors

Getting your book published is only half the battle, of course. You’ve created a wonderful book and launched it on the world’s biggest retailer platforms — but you still need to find a way to make people buy it. To help your book reach its potential, there are few companies you can turn to for assistance.

15. Reedsy Discovery

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💰 Pricing: $50

Reedsy Discovery helps thousands of self-publishing authors get the boost they need every month. When you submit your book, you get an editorial review in time for your launch date — as well as a chance to be featured in our weekly newsletter, sent out to over 200,000 eager readers.

In addition to reviews, Reedsy’s marketplace has dozens of experienced book marketers who can help you optimize your book’s product page, plan an ad campaign, and perfect your email marketing strategy.

16. BookBub

publishing books

💰 Pricing: Varies among genres

Perhaps the single biggest promotional platform in publishing, BookBub offers self-publishing authors a powerful way to publicize their discount deals. Through BookBub’s Featured Deals and self-serve ads , an author can tap into their subscriber-base and access devoted fans of almost any genre.

However, these days, it’s incredibly hard for self-publishing authors to secure one of their featured deals. Thankfully, BookBub has more than a little competition.

17. Written Word Media

publishing books

💰 Pricing: Varies between platforms

With a range of platforms catering to free and discounted books (the most prominent of which is their newsletters), Written Word Media provides authors with another way to connect with thousands of readers. Together with FreeBooksy and BargainBooksy (which promote free and bargain books, naturally), WMM has other sites devoted to steamy romances, new releases, and even audiobooks .

And if that isn’t enough, you can find more services over on Reedsy’s directory of book promotion sites .

Whichever options you choose, understand that it may take a bit of trial and error until you realize your perfect self-publishing system. There's no right or wrong way to go about it — which is all a part of learning how to self-publish a book in the first place.

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Book Marketing for Self-Publishing Authors

Home / Book Publishing / 29 Book Publishing Companies For Authors Without Agents

29 Book Publishing Companies For Authors Without Agents

Ten years ago, you never would have dreamed of getting your book traditionally published without an agent. But these days, the sky's the limit for authors.

The pros and cons of traditional vs. self-publishing have been hashed out a number of times.

So you know even though there are plenty of pros to self-publishing a book , there’s something validating about writing a book that’s so good a publishing company wants to claim and sell it as one of their own. Maybe you’re one of the many writers who'd like to have a book published through the traditional route, or you're looking to branch out and try it alongside independent publishing.

You’re not alone.

If you’ve ever considered seeking publishing companies to take a look at one of your books, you could find a literary agent, or there are plenty of legitimate publishing companies that accept proposals from authors without agents too!

Table of contents

Traditional publishing & literary agents–what’s the deal.

Caveat : As you all know, I've never traditionally published.  So I want to be upfront and let you know that the below is purely research-based and does not imply that I have used the below publishers. You can search for publishers and agents on websites like , , or .

When you think of traditional publishers, the Big 5 might be your first thought:

These are the big dogs — the Holy Grail of publishing accolades and prestige.

These companies are extremely selective and will only accept proposals through an agent. In order for the slightest hope that big publishing houses will show interest, fiction authors must have impressive writing skills and their work must fit the commercial mold of genre fiction, while nonfiction authors must have a compelling hook, a marketable idea, and a substantial author platform.

If you think your work is Big 5 material, you have to find an agent who’s interested in your book. They (if they’re any good) will help you make your book even better, then work their tail off to find you a great deal. They’re a lot like a business manager, and they can contact otherwise unreachable editors and negotiate all the important contract details on your behalf–but it's not all roses.

First, you have to do a ton of research on each agent before you contact them. The internet is full of scammers looking to prey on someone desperate for a book deal, or amateurs who will be a waste of your time (and possibly money) because they call themselves “agents” but don't really know what they're doing.

Then, after you do careful research to find a legitimate agent, the next step is finding one who thinks you have an amazing book. Even then, there's no guarantee of a publishing contract. Just like authors, agents typically get a number of rejections before they find a publisher who shows interest in your book.

If they do get your book accepted by a publisher and get you an advance for your book sales, it comes at a cost–15% of all your earnings.

So if you aren't set on getting published by a company that REQUIRES an agent, a better option might be getting published without an agent. There are tons of reputable medium and small publishing companies out there, and more and more publishers are loosening their grip on the reins to allow un-agented authors to contact them directly–cutting out the middleman. Even big companies dabble with submission periods of bypassing literary agents to find talented writers .

Although small publishing houses don't have the same clout with retailers or the same resources for marketing and publicity , most still have talented  editors , designers, and passionate professionals for publishing great books.

One of the book publishing companies on our list is even an imprint of Penguin Random House, and yes, they accept contacts from authors directly. Plus, here's an example of a brand new author who got a contract with Baen Books, another publisher on our list, and his novel has great reviews on Amazon.

Below is a list of 30 book publishing companies that authors can contact directly. For each publishing house, you'll find:

When you find one that sounds interesting or like it might be a fit for your goals as an author, bookmark it. This could bring you one step closer to becoming a (traditionally) published author.

Note:  Be sure to check each of the publishing companies' websites and submission requirements carefully. You'll make a great first impression by applying only to those publishing houses that carry books like yours.

How to Find Other Publishing Companies

One of the best ways to find successful publishing companies is to analyze the genre for your book and see what other companies are publishing books in that genre.

If you're doing this manually, this can take a very long time, and you'll end up finding a lot of other companies that aren't really great.

Thankfully, there's a tool that makes it easy to see all of the major publishers for the bestsellers of any genre.

That tool is Publisher Rocket .

With Rocket's category analysis tool, you can easily find a list of publishers for any genre by doing the following:

A lot of these publishing companies will be traditional publishers, so you can reach out to them if you want a traditional publishing deal. Or you might find some hidden gems, like lesser known but successful small publishers.

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30 Book Publishing Companies That Accept Proposals Directly From Authors

1. self-publishing school.

3. Chronicle Books

5. Flashlight Press

6. Skyhorse Publishing

7. Free Spirit Publishing

8. Five Star

9. Kensington Publishing Corp.

  • Known as “America’s Independent Publisher,” they have a bunch of imprints
  • Publish over 600 fiction and nonfiction titles each year, including a range of popular genres such as romance, women’s fiction, African American, young adult and nonfiction, true-crime, western, and mystery titles
  • Published some New York Times bestselling authors
  • You should review their editors’ interests and submit to the one you think is the best fit for your book
  • They will only respond if they are interested.
  • You can browse their book categories and titles here

10. Beacon Press

  • Publish serious nonfiction of deep fundamental issues, such as respect for diversity, religious pluralism, anti-racism, justice, equity, and compassion for all humans
  • At the time of this writing, they are not accepting self-help, new poetry, or fiction books
  • Submissions
  • They only accept electronic submissions.
  • They will contact you within 3 weeks if interested in seeing a full proposal after considering your query
  • Boston, Massachusetts

11. Black Inc.

  • Publish a variety of fiction and nonfiction, but not poetry or children’s books
  • Open to submissions from Australian writers only and via email only
  • If they are interested in your manuscript, they will contact you within 8 weeks.
  • Explore their website
  • Carlton, Victoria, Australia

12. Persea Books

  • Fiction and nonfiction.
  • They accept literary novels, creative nonfiction, memoirs, essays, biographies, books on contemporary issues, anthologies, and limited poetry and young adult titles.
  • They do not publish genre fiction, self-help, textbooks, or children’s books
  • You should submit your submissions package through the mail

13. BelleBooks/Bell Bridge

  • BelleBooks originated to publish Southern fiction before creating the substantial imprint Bell Bridge, which publishes a wide variety of genres
  • Publish everything from anthology to young adult, including children’s books, fantasy, nonfiction, romance, mystery, and women’s fiction.
  • Submission guidelines – CURRENTLY CLOSED TO SUBMISSIONS
  • This page includes to-the-point answers to questions like What do editors want? Why was your book rejected? And specific submission instructions, editor to contact, and word count by genre.
  • They do not accept simultaneous submissions unless you’re agented.
  • Typical response is 3-6 months
  • Browse their books
  • Memphis, Tennessee

14. Seven Stories Press

  • Publish fiction and nonfiction, and the occasional book of poetry
  • Books are distributed by Random House
  • You should submit the requested materials through mail only.
  • Check out their titles . You’ll notice their subjects include feminism, LGBTQ, environmentalism, human rights, and journalism.

15. Jollyfish Press

  • Publish a variety of commercial and literary fiction, fantasy, science fiction, mystery, thrillers, young adult, humor, romance, and women’s fiction.
  • A newer publisher started in 2012, was acquired by North Star Editions, Inc. in October 2016
  • Should submit through email only
  • Their About Us page tells what their editors are looking for , which can be helpful for authors seeking publication
  • Book titles
  • Provo, Utah

16. Oneworld Publishing

  • Nonfiction and literary fiction. Categories include self-help, biographies, religion, history, business, and more.
  • Approximately 100 books per year internationally.
  • They have a submission form for authors to download and complete
  • Make sure your book fits in with their previously published titles
  • London, United Kingdom

17. Black & White Publishing

  • Fiction and nonfiction, including women’s fiction (chick lit, saga, and romance), crime and psychological thrillers, contemporary YA and new adult crossovers, children’s fiction … and nonfiction: memoirs, sport (the UK and Ireland especially), humor, food and drink, and activity books
  • A leading independent Scottish publisher open to work by authors from UK, Ireland, and beyond
  • They prefer you use their online submission form, but they will accept mail
  • You should hear back within 3 months if they are interested
  • United Kingdom

18. Angry Robot

  • A respected adult science fiction and fantasy publisher, who occasionally publishes horror too
  • British-based but has great distribution in the US, Australia, New Zealand, and the UK. Part of Watkins Media Ltd
  • They have “open door” periods periodically (like every 18 months or so) when they accept manuscripts from authors without agents. Check their website to find out if it’s currently an open door period
  • You can submit to them anytime if you have a literary agent or if you’ve been recommended to them by an author already on their list
  • Submissions are only accepted electronically
  • They prefer books targeted to adults rather than junior or young adults. You can browse their books here

19. Evernight Publishing

  • They seek complete manuscripts between 10,000-100,000 words in sub-genres of romance and erotic romance.
  • Your submission should be exclusive to this publishing house
  • They will make a decision on your proposal within 12 weeks
  • Browse their website to see if yours fits

20. Felony & Mayhem

  • A print and digital literary mystery fiction book publisher
  • They only accept electronic submissions, preferably in Word docs
  • Word count must be at least 80,000 words. 85,000 is preferred.
  • They prefer mysteries with plots related to literature, philosophy, religion, academia, history, music, art, politics, food and wine, theatre, magic, anthropology, and settings outside the U.S.
  • Their book titles are here

21. Chicago Review Press

  • A variety of both fiction and nonfiction. They have several imprints, including an award-winning line of children’s and young adult nonfiction books
  • Carefully review submission guidelines relevant for you
  • You can even learn more about the acquisition editors you’ll be contacting
  • Here are their book titles
  • Chicago, Illinois

22. Albert Whitman & Company

  • Children’s books from 0-15, from board books to young adult
  • Picture books, middle-grade fiction, and young adult fiction each have their own submission details to follow
  • You should hear from them within 6 months if they are interested
  • Browse their catalog
  • Park Ridge, Illinois

23. Charlesbridge

  • Publishes primarily books for children , but also adult nonfiction and puzzle books. Their submission guidelines also state they are accepting young-adult novels.
  • Submit through mail
  • They will respond if they are interested only.
  • Here are their children’s books
  • Watertown, Massachusetts

24. Peachtree

  • Specialize in children’s books, from board books to picture books to young adult fiction and nonfiction. They also maintain a line of adult backlist titles covering consumer references in health, education, and parenting; regional guide books about Southern US; adult fiction, biography, and memoirs with a focus on Southern authors.
  • Send through mail
  • Their review process typically takes 6-9 months
  • Check out their books
  • Atlanta, Georgia

25. Turner Publishing

  • Little bit of everything – children’s, health & fitness, cookbooks, literary fiction, thriller/suspense, family & relationships/religion, juvenile fiction, history, humor, science, sports, romance, and nonfiction
  • Their submissions don’t provide a lot of guidelines except where to email your materials
  • They will contact if interested
  • Nashville, Tennessee

26. Koehler Books

  • Two publishing models : 1) Traditional model for experienced and agented authors with good sales. 2) Hybrid/co-publishing for new and emerging authors who need help and coaching.
  • A wide array of genres, including memoirs, military, Business, Fiction, self-help mystery, thriller young adult and women
  • They do not accept previously published books
  • Fill out their submissions form and expect to hear back within 1-2 weeks
  • View their home page
  • Virginia Beach, VA

27. TCK Publishing

  • They publish a wide range of nonfiction and fiction (but not poetry or children's picture books)
  • They only accept digital submissions of completed manuscripts or book proposals on their website or via email
  • Different guidelines if you're submitting fiction or nonfiction, so read carefully
  • They respond to all submissions with a yes or no within 21 days
  • Browse their titles here
  • Granger, Indiana
  • They publish poetry, memoirs, essays, fiction, and nonfiction
  • Submissions are opened and closed at different times
  • Publishes only about 30 books annually
  • Minneapolis, Minnesota

29. Union Square & Co. (Formerly Sterling Publishing)

  • They publish a massive variety of adult, young adult, and children’s books
  • They have over 60 years in business and over 5,000 titles in print
  • They have several imprints, including one for food, wine, and spirits; another for body, mind & spirit; another for crafting, decorating, and outdoor living; yet another for puzzles and games.
  • For children’s books, they publish both fiction and nonfiction. They even have an imprint that publishes workbooks and flashcards for students in preschool through middle school.
  • They accept submissions from authors through mail.
  • It sounds like they respond to all submissions via mail or phone within several months.
  • Browse their catalogs here

How To Get Noticed by Publishers

Once you've decided you want one of your books published, it's time to put in the work to get noticed and stay out of the slush pile.

Here are the strategies we'll take a look at:

  • Follow the guidelines
  • Be polite and professional
  • Build connections at conferences
  • Make it your best work
  • Be open to feedback
  • Build your author platform

Read and follow the stinkin’ guidelines.

Then read and follow them again.

Provide the publisher with exactly what they request in the method requested. If they say strongly prefer electronic submissions, give yourself a bonus point and submit your materials electronically.

Do not send your full manuscript unless they explicitly ask for it in their submission guidelines, or after they’ve expressed interested in your query letter.

Write an amazing query letter. This is like the cover letter you write when you’re applying for job, hoping for an interview. You need to write your best pitch to sell your book in a one-page letter, hoping the editor or agent picks your book to “interview” further.

Many publishers also request a synopsis or a brief summary of your entire story. Sample chapters are another common request for publishing companies. Most guidelines specify if they want one, two, or your first five. Give them what they ask for.

Nonfiction authors need to write a killer book proposal to show your book idea will sell, and that you have the credibility to give the advice. Among other things, your book proposal will include a detailed analysis of similar books already on the market, how your book is different, who will buy the book (your target audience), and why they need it, your author bio, a detailed chapter-by-chapter outline, and sample chapters. You’ll want to spend a fair amount of time researching and preparing your book proposal, which will probably end up being between 10 and 25 pages long.

Ultimately, send them quality work of what they ask for — nothing more, nothing less.

In all of your interactions as an author, you’ll be noticed for being polite and professional. In your letters, emails, social media, phone calls, and in-person conversations, show courtesy and professionalism and people will be more likely to want to do business with you.

If you come across as rude and unprofessional, people are not going to want to work with you. Editors receive an unbelievable number of submissions every month, so be patient and humble as you’re pursuing a publisher.

Good old fashioned one-on-one networking with people who work at publishing companies is another way to increase your chances of getting your foot in the door.

Publishers are more likely to at least carefully consider queries from someone they recognize, so bust out of your comfort zone and introduce yourself to people at conferences and summits. You never know where a connection may lead.

This is another “should go without saying,” but before you start pitching editors or agents, make sure your work is your best work. This goes for your manuscript as well as all of your submission materials. Read them out loud. Have someone else edit them. This is part of being professional. Don’t waste the publisher's time or yours by submitting sloppy materials.

Another tough one for some authors is being open to feedback. If your editor, your agent, and your beta readers give you feedback, have an open mind to it. Consider their point of view and seek more opinions or information if you’re unsure.

You probably won’t follow every piece of advice given (sometimes they're contradictory), but as authors, we are so blind to our passionate work that we miss the flashing red lights only outsiders can see. Tweak what’s necessary to create a more compelling book.

Finally, and this is especially important for nonfiction authors but doesn’t hurt for fiction authors either, build your author platform.

Design a professional author website that showcases your previous work if you have any and have your social media author accounts ready to go.

Showing the publishing companies that you have established a place in the world as an author by building a big email list will certainly help. This sends the message that you’ll be more like a partner to them in marketing your book — something they’ll love to see.

An Important Note About Vanity Presses

Apart from the 30 publishing companies on this list, not every company out there has your best interests at heart. Much like in the indie world, there are people out there who are more than happy to use you as a means of earning themselves money. Vanity presses are publishing companies that charge you a fee to publish your book, and do nothing to market it or professionally edit it. Be wary of any company that wants you to pay them to publish your story. If this happens, run for the hills.

If you're unsure of the difference between legitimate publishing houses and these ‘vanity presses,' check out this helpful guide that will clear things up for you.

Get After It

If the prestige, validation, greater potential of having your very own book on bookstore shelves, and the potential for literary awards is exciting to you, then researching and contacting publishing houses that seem the best fit for your writing may now be on your to-do list.

If reading about these publishing companies is exciting to you, or you've always known getting a publishing contract would mean the world to you, then why not go after it?

One thing I do know is if you never try, you’ll never know.

Side note: if you're interested, I also have an article to help you find the best self-publishing company here .

And as you’ve learned, you don’t even have to have an agent. You'll probably get a rejection or five, but don't get discouraged. There are plenty of legitimate book publishing companies out there just waiting to find the next talented author.

Why not you?

Dave Chesson

When I’m not sipping tea with princesses or lightsaber dueling with little Jedi, I’m a book marketing nut. Having consulted multiple publishing companies and NYT best-selling authors, I created Kindlepreneur to help authors sell more books. I’ve even been called “The Kindlepreneur” by Amazon publicly, and I’m here to help you with your author journey.

  • Traditional Publishing & Literary Agents--What’s The Deal?

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5 thoughts on “ 29 Book Publishing Companies For Authors Without Agents ”

I found your site terribly informative. As a rank amateur, many of my questions were answered. Permit me one dumb question – is it considered improper to submit a work to more than one publisher at a time? Told you i was an amateur.

Glad you’re liking it. As for your question, no, no it isn’t.

What about Bookouture, they accept manuscripts without an agent. They do not pay advances but pay higher royalties

Excellent, informative article. Thanks for sharing.

Glad you liked it.

Comments are closed.

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TCK Publishing

List of 100+ Reputable Book Publishing Companies

by Tom Corson-Knowles | 94 comments

100+ Reputable Book Publishers image

Here’s our list of reputable book publishing companies you might consider working with.

We’ve organized the list in an easily searchable table so you can quickly find the publishers that publish the type of book you’re looking to get published.

For example, if you’re looking for a romance publisher, just type “romance” in the search box, and you’ll only see the listings for romance publishers.

Company NameWebsiteSubmission GuidelinesGenre
TCK, Non fiction eBooks, print books, Audiobooks in all major genres and niches
Reed, Learning
Penguin Random, Non fiction, Poetry, mystery, Western, romance, science fiction, fantasy
Harper, Children, Christian
Simon & fiction, fantasy, Adult, Children
Phoenix Publishing and Media, Literary Non fiction, Anthologies
Phoenix Yard, Children, Fiction, Non fiction
Pan, Non fiction, Children Fiction & Non fiction, Academic, Children's Fiction & Non fiction, Military History, Nautical & Sport, Natural History
Arbordale fiction, Science, Math, Folklore
Arcade, Non fiction
Arkham Fiction
Armida, Non fiction
B & W, Non fiction, Children
Beacon, Fiction, Non fiction
John Blake fiction, Fiction, Health, History, Humour, Military, Mind, Body & Sprit, Music, Science & Natire, Sport, Travel, True Crime, True Life Stories
Capstone fiction, Children's Books, Educational Books
Flame Tree, Science fiction, Horror fiction
Morgan James, Non fiction, Faith, Kids
Mother Tongue, Fiction, Regional Art History, Photography, Anthologies
Medknow, Medicines
Tuttle Languages, Asian Food & Cooking, Gardening & Flower Arranging, Crafts & Origami, Children’s Books, Martial Arts, Asian Literature, Games & Graphic Novels, Asian History & Culture, Health & Fitness, Self-Help & Eastern Religion, Asian Art & Collectibles, Interior Design & Architecture, Travel Guides, Maps, and Business Books
Tachyon, Science Fiction, Fantasy
City Lights's Books
Dover Books
Graywolf fiction
Dorrance Publishing, Non-fiction, Poetry, Children's literature, Coffee table book
Gantec Publishing Solutionswww.gantecpublishing.comChildren's Books
Kensington Publishing, romance, women’s fiction, African American, young adult, nonfiction, true-crime, western, mystery
Ripple Grove's books
North Atlantic fiction, Beat Generation, Raw Foodism, Yoga, Martial arts, Capioera, Spirituality, Religion, Holistic Health, Sustainability, Nutrition, Occult, Esotericism, Mediumship, Parapsychology, New Age, Fitness, Baseball, Science, technology, medicine, professional development, higher education
Balboa, children's, photography, fiction, poetry, cookbooks
BookPress Publishingbookpresspublishing.comNon fiction, Fiction, Children's Book
Anchor Book fiction, Educational, Parenting, Christian, Children's Book
Lee & Low's Books
The Open Book, Non fiction, Academic, Humanities, Social Science, Adult, YA, Children's
Hidden Brook, Non fiction, Poetry, Children and YA, Anthologies, Memoir, Photography & Art
Little Book's Books, Baby Books
Lakewater, Adult, New Adult, Yung Adult
Stormbird (including short stories, essays, reviews, commentary), Genre Fiction (romance, fantasy/sci-fi, crime), Genre non-fiction (including mind/body/spirit, true crime, self-help), Narrative non-fiction (including memoirs, biographies, histories)
Autumn House, Non fiction
Inkwater, Poetry
TouchPoint, Non fiction
Alchemy Press Book of
Tradewind, Children's Literature
Blossom Spring, commercial women’s fiction, including historical romance and saga, crime and psychological thrillers, paranormal and mystery, children’s fiction, non fiction, memoirs, humour, health & well-being, food and drink
Queer fiction, Anthology
Coffeetown, Non fiction, Academic, Memoirs and theological studies, philosophy, history, art, literature, ethics, and contemporary social and cultural issues, Christian, spirituality, YA fiction, non fiction
Grey Book
Conundrum, Non fiction, Poetry
Chelsea Green fiction, progressive politics and sustainable living
House of Anansi Fiction, Non fiction, Poetry, graphic novels, crime fiction
August House, Children's literature, folktale anthologies
blue manatee's Book, Mindfulness, Psychology, Health & Yoga
Green Frog fiction, erotica, crime/mystery, history, science, math, fractals(!), travel, art, cookbooks, health and well-being, psychology, philosophy, spiritual, Tantra, Tarot, psychic, current events, industry news, politics, ecology, the environment, income inequality, cultural
Brick Cave fiction, Fantasy, Science fiction, urban fantasy, paranormal, poetry
Living Springs Publishers, Non fiction, Children's Books
Korero culture, street art, erotica and horror
City Lights Romance, Historical Romance, Humor, Mystery and Thrillers, Paranormal Romance, Science Fiction and Fantasy, Young Adult
eLectio, Non-Fiction, Poetry, Action/adventure Horror, Historical Fiction Romance, Mystery Sci-Fi/Fantasy,
Weasel, Non-Fiction, Poetry
Alfresco, History
Native Ink fiction, Children's Books
Torquere romance, paranormal, contemporary, western, suspense
Pants On Fire Grade Books, Young Adult Books, Fiction
Figroot, Fiction
CKN Christian
Wordpool fiction
Ink Smith, Non fiction, Children's Books
Wolfpack Publishingwolfpackpublishing.comwolfpackpublishing.comNon fiction
Moonshine Cove Publishing,, Non fiction
WiDo, Non fiction, Autobiography/Memoir, Commercial Fiction, Cross-genre, Historical, Humor, Literary Fiction, Love, Narrative Nonfiction, Regional, Religious/Spiritual
Mason J. fiction, Fiction, Poetry
Neverland Publishing, historical fiction, fantasy, children's books
The Key Publishing House & Culture, Creative Thinking, Novels & Short Stories, Politics & Contemporary, Young Adults & Children
Divertir, Romance, Young Adult
John Hunt & Young Adult, Christianity, Culture & Politics, Fiction, History, Non fiction, Paganism
White Knuckle, Horror
Anthem, Classics, Aesthetics
Writerists, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Mystery, Horror
Lore Lush Adult, Novels, Anthology
Tiny Fox, Non fiction, Commercial, Sci-Fi/Fantasy (LitRPG included), MG/YA (all genres), Military, Bizarre, Magical Realism, Historical, Memoir, science, religion/spirituality, humor, and skydiving
Echoic Mobile e-book, comics, multiple path stories, text games
Blue Swan, Thrillers, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
Regal House, Poetry, Memoirs
Ink Smith, Non fiction
Tirgearr Adult, Thriller, Romance, Sci-Fi, Mystery, Fantasy
Triplicity, intrigue, crime, murder/mystery, suspense, action/adventure, history, horror,sci-fi, fantasy
Coventry House fiction, business & economics, sports & recreation, education & social science, and entertainment & pop culture
Sleepytown's Books, Teen, and Adult Novels, Non fiction, Poetry and Short Stories
Leo Publishing, fiction, Science fiction, Thriller, Mystery and Crime, Poetry, Short-story collection, Children's Books and Young Adult Books
Biblio, Mystery, Young Adult, Children's Books, Comics and Graphic Novels, Contemporary Non fiction, Historical, LGBT
The Wild Rose, Women's Fiction, Mystery, Thriller, Historical Fiction, Erotica
Eden Stories, Children's Books, YA, Poetry, Memoirs
Unhinged Publishing and, Romance, YA, New Adult, Mystery, Fiction, Fantasy, Science Fiction

How to Get Your Book Published

If you’re not sure how to go about getting your book published by a reputable publisher, make sure to follow these steps.

1. Know Your Genre

You need to know the specific genre and subgenre of your book. Some publishers only publish romance novels, while others may only publish nonfiction business books. By understanding your genre, you’ll know which publishers to pursue and which to ignore.

2. Find an Appropriate Publisher for Your Book

Different publishers focus on different genres, so you should only create your own personal list of publishers who are actively publishing books in your genre. Otherwise, you’re just wasting your time.

3. Research and Prepare

Once you’ve got your own personal list of potential publishers, visit their websites, check out their submission guidelines , read reviews about them online and on author forums, and find out as much as you can to make sure they’ll be a good fit for you to work with.

Some publishing companies accept open submissions from any author, while others only accept submissions from literary agents. If you need or want to work with a literary agent, you should browse our list of literary agents to find one that will be a good fit for you.

4. Submit Your Manuscript

After you identified a specific publishing house that accepts open submissions from authors, make sure you read their submission guidelines and follow their process exactly. If you don’t follow their guidelines, chances are your submission will be automatically rejected or ignored.

If the publisher only accepts submissions from literary agents, you’ll need to speak with your agent about submitting your book to them.

Other Book Publishers

Are there any other publishing companies you think we should add to the list?

Let us know in the comments below or feel free to contact us.

Tom Corson-Knowles

Tom Corson-Knowles is the founder of TCK Publishing, and the bestselling author of 27 books including Secrets of the Six-Figure author. He is also the host of the Publishing Profits Podcast show where we interview successful authors and publishing industry experts to share their tips for creating a successful writing career.


Manuel A Lopez

Hi Kaelyn, I published my first book in 2014 called ‘A Guide to Winning Mind Games’ on how to improve human health through a self-publishing company. I have now written a second book and I am ready to publish the second book, which is also on the same topic on how to improve human health. I would like to try a different approach to publishing the second book. The book is technical in nature and uses engineering principles to explain health conditions. I would like to choose a publishing company that would help the author. Any suggestions.

Karen Alexander

I just found a new publishing company that says it does traditional publishing. It is called Creativejuicesbooks. Is it reputable? Says they do editing proofing, but are now doing publishing. I am looking at publishing a children’s series. Just wanting to be sure

E LaBranche

I wrote a wonderful, sweet fictional story( with a lesson for children) and I can’t, for my life, get it published. Years go by and I am getting discouraged. Help

Jeanne Sanner

I have a solution for you.

delia okafor

my dad wrote the history of our family, I want to edit and publish this history as a book to surprise him and to keep our family history alive for the future generation. which of these companies do you suggest I contact? thank you

Kaleema Overton

After reading countless articles I am thoroughly confused and frustrated. It seems traditional publishers are looking for established writers; vanity press is seen as a scam/unreliable and self-publication often comes with the stigma of not be legitimate not to mention the huge learning curve to publishing on your own. How can a new writer get published?

I may have a solution for you.

Joseph Parent

Kaelyn Barron

I have written a book and it is my first book. I have published poetry books in the past with Amazon. My book is a fiction piece and the subject matter is mediumship and some paranormal entries. I know this is a tough sale.

Cole Salao

Hey Joseph, I think the paranormal is a subject that’s always caught people’s imaginations. As for being a tough sell, finding a publisher that specifically works stories on mediumship and the paranormal definitely helps.

Mark L. Hopkins

Ms. Barron, I have what may be a unique query. I am a former history professor who became a syndicated columnist, writing for more than 500 newspapers across 37 states. In between I wrote thirteen books, virtually all history related. All are self published and most have sold between 800 and 1200 copies with limited promotion. I am interested in working with a publisher who can take the books I have and put them in the marketplace.

Titles of books include, “Journey to Gettysburg,” “The Wounds of War,” “Pirates, Privateers, and the U.S. Navy,” “Chicago’s 9/11”, “The World as it was when Jesus Came,” “On the Road with Paul the Apostle,” and several others.

Do you have some help/suggestions for me?

Kaelyn Barron

Hi Mark! I would check out these nonfiction publishers . You can also submit your manuscript to us, we accept nonfiction history books :)


I Hope Readersmagnet will include it in your list…

Thanks Jessah, we’ll check it out!


Hi Penny, i have published an academic work on literary criticism for our schools. Am currently reviewing the work and is in a larger volume. The book examines the genres of literature in details with revision exercises as well as other aspects of Literary Appreciation. It enjoyed massive reception in the first edition and thats why am carrying out a review. Pls, which publishing house can publish it for me with good loyalty consideration and online/off line marketing?

Hi Godwin, since your work is academic, I would recommend narrowing your search to this list of academic publishers :)

Alicia Marie Maddox

Hi Kaelyn, my name is Alicia Maddox. I’m an amateur writer and I’m looking to get my first book published. Its for the teen/young adult audience and the genre is fantasy. The title is called The Misfits. Without going into a lot of detail, it’ll remind you of James and the Giant Peach and Inkheart. I have the first 3 chapters written and I would love to know if there are publishing companies who might be interested in that kind of a story. Any help would be great.

Hi Alicia, thanks for your comment! So I would begin by checking out these lists of YA and Sci-fi/fantasy publishers (choose which one you think your book is more of). Check out the kinds of books they publish, review their guidelines, and since the book isn’t done you can send a proposal and see if any would be interested in a story like that :)

Thank you so much for the info. I’ll look in to these.

you’re very welcome, we hope you find the list helpful! :)

Edie Johnson

I wrote a book called “Lady Rags” about a bag lady and I paid Page Publishing to publish it, not knowing how well it would be received. I am astounded by the positive comments I’ve received about my book. (And they aren’t all friends and relatives. Folks seemed to be impressed. Anyhow, I paid Page a fortune and didn’t see much in royalties. I have another book on my computer, ready for someone to read it, but I’m 85 years old and don’t want to look for publishers. I did that in my early years without much success and I’m nervous about trying it again. Any suggestions?

Hi Edie, thanks for your questions! If you’ve gotten good feedback from readers, I would definitely suggest trying a traditional publisher, or even self-publishing, which would allow you to keep the royalties. We have a step-by-step guide to self-publishing that breaks down the process. If you want to pursue a traditional publisher, I would recommend working with a literary agent who will help you get a publishing deal. We have many posts on literary agents as well. :) I hope this helps! Please let me know if you have any questions or if I can send you links to more specific topics.


I am African and reside in Africa. I write books on a new genre that mixes science and theology. The majority of traditional publishers are not prepared to understand both of these two languages: scientific language and biblical language, and my books are not selected for publication. What to do ? My books are part of cosmogony and cosmology with scientific-religious literature. Am I doomed to publish only in self-published editions because I am the creator of a new genre?

Hi Flavien, thanks for your comment. It’s a tricky situation when you create/blend new genres. Self-publishing is an option and doesn’t have to be a bad thing, but if you’re determined to find a traditional publisher, I’m sure there are some out there that are looking for cutting-edge literature like yours.


Thank you very much Kaelyn Barron for this encouragement.

you’re very welcome! :)

Jan Williams

Looking to get published help!

Hi Jan! Can you tell us a little about your book so I can point you to some helpful resources? What genre is your book? Are you looking for a literary agent? Are you considering self-publishing?


Can you add Black Opal Books to your list? We are a legitimate publisher for Fiction and non-fiction of both paperback, hardback, and ebooks with over 10 years experience in the publishing industry.

Thanks Gibby, I’ll check out your site and update this post!


Is Landaff Media a reputable publisher?

Hi Glen, I can’t figure out much from their website. It looks like they specialize in advertising and book marketing. As far as actually publishing they might be a vanity press. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but just get as much info from them as you can and make sure you understand exactly what you’ll be getting before you sign or pay anything.

Catherine Ferguson

A publishing company to add – Bitterroot Mountain Publishing House LLC based in Hayden, Idaho A small publishing company that selects meaningful and well-written manuscripts which are not necessarily conventional but represent diverse genres, fiction, and non-fiction. Website:

Thanks Catherine, we’ll check it out!

Jacqueline Williams

Have anyone heard of Authors Ghostwriting before? I have been contacted by a representative to publish my book for a fee of $800, which is a drop due to holiday prices. It is limited and will go back to the original price after the New Year.

Hi Jacqueline, I don’t really know anything about them, but they seem to have decent reviews. I would always be cautious of vanity publishers though, and make sure you understand what they’re going to actually give you before you sign or pay anything. It also depends on what you’re looking for. Are you paying them to just publish your book, or to do editing or any ghostwriting?

paul mcdowell

HI,, I have written a book about my travel adventures Would that be regarded as a ‘travel’ genre? I have been thoroughly shocked finding the amount of ‘publishers’ that are total scams. Almost sent one $3000 before I read their reviews. By reading some answers here, I think a small publisher would be my best choice. I STRUGGLED for 5 years getting my adventures on paper, so I’m reasonably sure I won’t be writing another book. An agent likely not necessary and I don’t mind paying a company to check my book out, and if accepted, for them to handle the distribution and sales. I’m not so concerned with how much $ I will make, but I don’t want to spend much time afterwards. Thought/suggestions?

Hi Paul, thanks for your comment! Regarding your first question, it sounds like your book could be considered ‘travel,’ since most travel categories online and in stores include travel memoirs in addition to travel guide books. I would recommend going with a smaller, traditional publisher (meaning you don’t pay for them to check it out or to publish it). The reason I suggest avoid vanity publishers is that they mainly make their money from the high publishing fees they charge, but they don’t often put much time or effort into helping you make your book the best it can be.

Cheryl Lauzon

Hello Penny, do you have any information on Xlibris Publishing?

Hi Cheryl, Xlibris is a self-publishing company (vanity press) which means you pay them to publish your book. That’s not inherently a bad thing, but you do need to have a clear understanding of what you’re getting in exchange for your money before you sign a contract. Here’s a more comprehensive review


Hi Kaelyn My book was published once and was on Amazon for a while.I would like to re publish it but not pay any fees and am looking for a non vanity publisher .any suggestions .The book is fiction sci fi

Hi Adamo, you can check out these sci fi publishers :)


I have submitted my first book to Dorrance Publishing, they have replied with a proposal that seems fair. However, I fall into that category of scared of being scammed. They are on your list. I have researched them and get positive feedback, but still seem a bit antsy Any info you can give me about them would be greatly appreciated.

Hi Jerry, thanks for your comment. They have a pretty good rating with the BBB. The important thing is that you understand they are a self-publishing company, which means you pay them to put your book together and publish it. This doesn’t necessarily make them a scam, it’s just how that business model works. There’s no guarantee that they’ll help you sell a lot of books just because you paid them to put it together. If you’re okay with paying for their self-publishing help, just make sure you carefully read any contracts to understand what exactly you’re paying them to do.

Art Anders

Hi Kaelyn, do you know any publishers that would be interested in a book of 550 pages about the White Goddess who was thought to be have been known in a handful of European places but after extensive research has been found to be known all over the world from ancient times? Thanks Art

Hi Art, if it’s nonfiction, you may want to check out some of these publishers here .


Hi I have been working with a publisher for my children’s book since early this year. Their response has been slow, reciting COVID as the reason. I fear I may have been taken by this publishing company. Just received illustrations this week after submitting the descriptions, etc. in June. Is this reasonable, I still do not have an edit on the manuscript copy. This is my first book and I am beginning to regret my choice of publisher., LifeRich Publishing. Do you have any information on this publisher?

Hi Carol, thanks for your comment. It sounds like they are a vanity press, which means anyone can pay for their services, so it’s possible that they are very busy. They have some mixed but overall positive reviews on Trust Pilot. I definitely wouldn’t pay for any more services until you get what you already paid for.


I’m preparing to publish my cookbook, and just got an email from a publishing co. called Newman Springs, saying they remember discussing my book a while ago (I don’t) and might just be interested in publishing my book. They need the manuscript and will accept or reject within about a week. Has anyone heard of this company? I can’t find it online.

Hi Judi, I found their website here . It sounds like they’re a hybrid publisher, so you’ll pay for some services.

Paul Brunsberg

I am lost at sea in regards to finding a publisher for my book. The title is “How To Raise An All-American Child.” The subtitle is “In Less Than 50 Pages.”

I have no money to contribute. I am a retired counselor, trained in psychiatry, behavior modification, family systems, and addiction

Can you give some suggestions? Please. Thanks.

Paul Brunsberg

Hi Paul, I would start by looking at nonfiction publishers and reviewing our tips on how to submit a manuscript or proposal .



Can i trust them?

Hey Helena! I checked out their website and it looks like they’re accredited by the BBB. Their website also looks well made and legit. I still advise being cautious though, just on principle.

Alexander Robertson

I am looking to publish my collection of Urban Ballads, which in my description is poetry narrative in form, and dealing with aspects of living rather than country life. Where should I be looking to find a publisher interested in the popular and the profound?

Hi Alexander, you might want to check out some of these poetry publishers:

Ihar Kazak

NB: I might add that I’m an interpreter-turned-literary translator for a number of reasons. One of them is the dearth of translated foreign language literature in the U.S. Thus, I might, just might alleviate this unusual phenomenon somewhat…

Hello, Kaelyn Barron: Perhaps you might know some publishers of short stories in translation? I have had reasonable success with this author (a Russian émigré after the 1917 Revolution) who has written some as-yet-undiscovered humorous short stories of a rather intriguing and unusual sort, which might be even of interest to most readers. The reason I’m stating this is that I’ve already had initial success and had a solid collection published by an academic press, but now I wish to give this genre a wider exposure… Most of the stories are no longer than 5K words and quite digestible and humorous, but they all have a universal message! Thank you for your suggestions. Best, Ihar

Hi Ihar, unfortunately I don’t know of any specifically, but we are working on a series of posts on foreign language publishers and academic publishers. For now, you might check out this list .

Chris Glover

Hi Kaelyn, My name is Chris and I have written two books sharing my 30 plus year journey as a stepparent from two different relationships. I am struggling with targeted audience and which publishing company would be a better fit for my story. I have been burned by a publishing company in past and trying to avoid failing in the pitfall again. My first book needs some serious editing and I really want to work with a publishing company who will help my readers to feel all of the emotions, good and bad, associated with step parenting. Any suggestions? Thank You

Hi Chris, it’s hard to name specific ones from this huge list, but I would suggest that you look into small- to medium-sized traditional publishers. They tend to be more invested in helping their authors. Sounds like you’re writing a memoir? Or self-help? So look to ones focused on nonfiction and those types of genres, and make sure they include editing services and have decent reviews from other authors.

David A Caldarola

Hello, Kaelyn I am considering publishers for a children’s book series I am preparing. I have been considering Covenant Books. Do you have any information on them good or bad? Thanks.

Hi David, I don’t know much about them, but they have a very good rating with the BBB and many positive reviews. I can’t tell how selective they are, but they do have a submission process and you have to be selected for publication, which is usually a good sign. Also looks like they don’t charge fees.

Mark Renshaw

It’s a worrying state of the publishing industry to note how many of those publishers no longer seem to operate, but thanks for the list as it gave me a few more query options.

Hi Mark, thanks for letting me know, I’ll work on updating this post soon.

Tammy M Moses

do all publishing houses charge you to publish your book?

Hi Tammy, not at all! Traditional publishers do not charge to publish your book; they pay you in royalties if they choose to take on your project. Vanity presses are publishing companies that charge or take publication rights.


hi Kaelyn how are you which publisher did you think best for the author and pay a royalty more than any other publisher?

Hi Samson, it’s really hard to name specific ones from this huge list, but I would suggest that you look into small- to medium-sized traditional publishers. They tend to be more invested in helping their authors, and might also offer better royalties.

Karen Bailey

I am looking for a book publisher that will not pose as a reputable publisher only to set out being a scam artist. I wrote a book about my personal ordeal of being diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer while also going through the hardship and difficulty of my husband being diagnosed with cancer. Unfortunately, he lost his battle with the disease. I wrote the book as a dedication to him and as a source of encouragement to all breast cancer survivors. What genre would my book fall under in your opinion and how can I place such trust in my next publisher without losing my money and having my dreams almost destroyed. Professionalism comes with deceit. Lesson learned, but I do not want to be put through all steps of publication completion only to have a publishing company fall off the face of the earth and end all communication where you are no longer connected. Loss of money, no book published, and the wind taken out of one’s sails.

Hi Karen, thank you for your comment. I’m very sorry for the loss of your husband, and for your negative publishing experience. To answer your first question, it sounds like your book would be a memoir within the health/illness recovery genre. While the publishers on this list were well researched before being selected, I would recommend doing your own homework before signing a deal. For example, asking for references (past clients) might help you to trust more easily.


Which publisher(s) accept poetry manuscripts and do not require an agent. Thanks.

Hi Jenny, you can find a list of poetry publishers here

richard phillips

Hello I am a musician that has been professional for over 4O years I have appeared with many celebrities and I have just written a book about them and my exploits over the years. could you advise me on which publishers would be interested in my stories.

Hi Richard, I can’t really recommend a specific one, but I would start by looking at those interested in memoirs.

Rhonda Hardy

I am looking for a publisher who will publish a “How To” book. I am in process of writing a book, How to Choose an Assisted Living. Baby Boomers will be coming of age for ALFs and it is a daunting task. I give them all the inside details, as I was an Administrator of an Assisted Living for 15 years. My hope is that this book will also encourage ALFs to step up their game and provide better care as people begin to ask them the tough questions.

Hi Rhonda, for a more focused selection, I would check out these nonfiction publishers . TCK also publishes how-to books, you can review our submission guidelines here :)

Valorita Salaam

Can you please tell me what genre an autobiography about a woman who overcomes various traumas would fall under?

Hi Valorita, sounds like it would be a memoir.

Valorita Salaam

Thank you. I published my Memoirs under “From Trauma to Sanity: Perseverance is Key”

Matthew DuSault

To Kaelyn Barron, Which of the bigger publishing companies do not require a Literary Agent ? Also what publishing houses have the most integrity, and are very reputable..

Hi Matthew, thanks for your comment! Most of the “big” traditional publishing companies require an agent, but you’ll find many smaller or medium-sized ones on this list who don’t (including TCK Publishing). Everyone on this list is considered reputable and fair to our knowledge.

Sayeed S Rahman

I do not find New Generation Publishing, 51 Gower Street, London, wciE6HJ, Phone: 001234711956. I have been in touch withis publisher. I like to know whether this publishing house exists or not. Their email is : [email protected] will somebody respond soon to this query. My email: [email protected] cell phone: +307-o951123 +3222949928

Hi Sayeed, I checked them out and they look like a legitimate company and do exist, however you should note that they are a self-publishing service, so you basically pay them to help you through the self-publishing process.

Scarlett Kool

Please add Unhinged Publishing and Consulting to your list. They are accepting unsolicited manuscript submissions for Erotica, romance, young adult, new adult, Mystery, Fiction, Fantasy, Paranormal, and Science Fiction

Thanks for sharing, Scarlett! I’ve added them to the list


will yo be in touch about your services, I have two novels and wish you would help me. they are drama- romance, fiction young adult. thanks, [email protected] scarlett

Hi Scarlett, if you’re interested in publishing with us, please check out our submission guidelines

patty laplante

women’s interest…is that a genre or considered a sub category of something else? It is two words and that is not acceptable. The book is nonfiction. It is a memoir.

Hi Patty, women’s fiction is an umbrella term for books that focus on women’s life experiences and are marketed to female readers. Women’s interest books are books that are marketed to women, but could be fiction or nonfiction.

Stephen Faulkner

Add Eden Stories Press to your list. They’re looking for submissions and seem to have a very open and liberal sense of what they want.

Hi Stephen, thanks for sharing! I’ve added them to the list


I was looking for the book publisher in has ” Star ” in it..I cant seem to find it..Thanks

Hi Penny, I’ve tried researching publishers in Colorado but can’t find any with “Star” in the name… If you remember any more details please let me know and I’ll do my best to help :)

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Book Publishing Process: What is it?

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Understanding the steps within the book publishing process is essential for any author. You may have an idea for a book, or maybe even a manuscript, but without the publishing process your thoughts and words remain unreached.

While publishing standards exist, the process of publishing a book may vary depending on your chosen publishing house or publishing method. This guide outlines the key steps for independent publishing . 

Publishing a Book with an Independent Publisher

To create a flawless book, a detailed process is required to ensure your book can compete against top-selling titles. 

  • Brainstorming session 
  • Ghostwriting pairing
  • Manuscript and book title creation
  • Editing process
  • Book cover design
  • Typesetting
  • Proofreading
  • Social Media and PR 
  • eBook and book launch 
  • Best-selling author campaigns 
  • Book promotion

1. Book Brainstorming Session

The first step of publishing with an independent publisher, such as Forbes Books , is the brainstorming session. Traditional publishers require you to come to the table with an existing manuscript, but that isn’t required for Forbes Books authors. 

You can bring a manuscript for editing, but you can start with your ideas and goals. During the brainstorming stage, you will bring your ideas, areas of expertise, and goals. By the end of the session, you’ll clearly see what your plan will be. This will be further detailed after the session with the creation of a Master Book Plan. This will serve as the guiding plan throughout your publishing process. 

2. Ghostwriting Pairing

The ghostwriting service is one benefit of working with an independent publisher. If you so choose, you can elect to use a ghostwriter to transform your ideas into pages and chapters. A rigorous matching process helps evaluate the best candidates to ghostwrite your book. 

During this process, you will meet with three potential ghostwriters and sample their writing. This collaborative time allows you to evaluate your compatibility and talk about tone and style. 

3. Manuscript Creation

If you’ve elected a ghostwriter to create your manuscript, you’ll receive the manuscript in three sections. This allows you to provide edits or guidance along the way. If you choose to write the book yourself, you will move to the next step after completing the manuscript. During this stage, our team will also help develop an eye catching title for your book. 

4.  Book Editing

The book editing process is essential for taking a strong manuscript and polishing it to perfection. The edits may vary depending on the manuscript. However, this process generally includes a developmental edit, line edit and a copy edit. 

The developmental edit takes place as the book is being created in sections. The line edit stage looks for improvements to the book’s structure and flow, whereas the copy edit stage looks for grammar. 

5. Book Cover Design

Now that your book is written and edited, you need an attractive book cover design to stand out. With a team of graphic designers at your disposal, you can achieve a professional-level cover design to draw potential readers. 

Having graphic designers at your disposal is one of the significant advantages of publishing with an independent publisher instead of self publishing. Instead of trying to create a cover yourself, you have a team of seasoned designers to help your cover compete with the other top books on the market. 

6. Typesetting

The typesetting process includes arranging the texts and images of your book so it is ready for print or for ebook publication. This ensures that each page contains the right information and is visually appealing and easy to read. 

7. Proofreading

Accuracy is everything when it comes to establishing your credibility as an author. Our Forbes Books publishers ensure that your book is thoroughly proofread, even after the editing stage. Our publishing team reads your book three times, in addition to reviewing it section by section during the developmental editing phase. 

8. Social Media and PR 

When you publish with an independent publisher, you can gain access to additional features that traditional publishers don’t offer to every author. We build momentum leading up to your book launch through targeted PR efforts . This helps you grow visibility and promote your book at the same time. 

These PR efforts include:

  • Crafting of unique messaging and pitch angles
  • Media outreach
  • Content creation
  • Media monitoring
  • Coaching for all media opportunities 

With a veteran PR team at your side, you can gain spots on local and national TV, radio shows, digital and print outlets, and more. 

9. eBook and Book Launch 

Now that your book has been thoroughly reviewed and laid out, there’s nothing left but to launch and distribute your book ! Your ebook will live on mainstream platforms, such as Amazon. We will distribute your book for online retail with major bookstores, such as Barnes and Nobles and Books-A-Million. 

Depending on your chosen publishing program, your book may also be distributed to brick-and-mortar bookstores and sold as a paperback or hardback copy. 

10. Best-selling Author Campaigns 

Now that your book has officially hit the physical or digital shelves, you have a chance at becoming a bestselling author. At Forbes Books, our best seller campaigns guarantee your book will receive the sales needed to become a bestseller on Amazon, The Wall Street Journal and/or USA Today. 

11. Book Promotion

Book promotion is an essential component of a successful book launch. Promotional services provide more opportunities to gain greater visibility for your book. 

These services may include:

  • Book seeding campaign
  • Reader reviews 
  • 4-Month Book Launch Publicity Campaign
  • Amazon Optimization & Targeted Advertising
  • Hudson Booksellers airport front table displays
  • Book Launch at Forbes on Fifth in NYC

Question and answer hands

Independent Book Publishing Process FAQs

Even after understanding the steps within the book publishing process, you may have some unanswered questions. Here are a few commonly asked questions on publishing. 

How Long is the Book Publishing Process?

The duration of the book publishing process heavily depends on the author’s chosen involvement, and the complexity of their book or topic. However, it is common for the publishing process to take between a year and a year and a half to complete.

Traditional Publishing vs. Independent Publishing 

The publishing process with a traditional publishing house differs from the independent book publishing process. Both can produce high quality print books. 

Depending on your vision, traditional publishing may be right for you. However, independent publishing offers greater control over your book and allows you to remain the owner of the book – unlike traditional publishing.

Traditional Publishing benefits include:

  • Marketing support for premiere titles only
  • Distribution support
  • No publishing costs
  • No rights to your book
  • Low manuscript acceptance rate

Independent Publishing benefits include:

  • Fast completion, about one year
  • Dedicated marketing support
  • PR and distribution support
  • Author maintains rights to the book
  • Higher publishing cost involved

View additional FAQs on book publishing with Forbes Books.

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