After writing a book, you may be wondering: how do I get this onto shelves and into the hands of readers? Should I choose self publishing or traditional publishing? Publishing, once a very formal and distant process, has changed forever with the rise of the Internet, and traditional publishing is no longer the only route available to writers.

What is traditional publishing?

Traditional publishing houses, most notably the Big Four (Harper Collins, Macmillan, Penguin Random House, and Hachette), dominate the publishing world. An author hoping to get published by one of these houses, or their imprints, must first query literary agents with their manuscript. This is one of the main differences when choosing self publishing or traditional publishing. Once signed, the literary agent will then represent their author’s manuscript to publishing houses and negotiate a deal for their book.

While publishing houses have the most resources for editing, marketing, publicity, and distribution, it can take years for your book to grace store shelves even once you’ve secured a deal, and it’s an uncertain process at the best of times. As the author, you make money via advances and royalties, but you also surrender some rights to the story as well as creative control over things like your book cover. Your projected timeline for your book is something to consider when choosing self publishing or traditional publishing.

What is the alternative to traditional publishing?

Again, with the advent of the Internet, it’s become easier than ever to take control of your own writing career. With the ability to self-publish digitally and the power of social media, self-publishing can be both a rewarding and lucrative process. A self-published author has complete creative control over their content, marketing, and distribution—but they also take the financial risk, as self-publishing is entirely self-funded and self-organized.

Self-publishing alone takes an enormous amount of work, organization, and dedication. Without a corporate marketing team to draw up a strategy for your book, it falls on you to find early reviewers, place ads, design the cover, and more. The complete freedom of self-publishing comes at a cost.

Is there a middle ground?

Happily, there is a way to get the best of both worlds. Hybrid publishing is a new, innovative way of publishing that combines the collaborative support of traditional publishing with the creative control of self-publishing.

Hybrid publishing houses, such as Central Park South Publishing, help authors to edit their books, coordinate cover art, and design market strategies. The turnaround rates, from submission to publication, are much faster and more streamlined than in traditional publishing.

But the best part of hybrid publishing is that these houses offer much higher royalty rates than traditional publishing houses, at much lower personal risk than self-publishing.

Two heads work better than one—in this case, a collaborative, supportive approach to publishing, without the red tape or the stress. Central Park South Publishing is here to help jumpstart authors into their careers as painlessly and seamlessly as possible, and we ensure that you get what every writer wants: their book in readers’ hands.