The Four-Thousand-Dollar Question

I received a message from a writer who wanted to talk about publishing.

She had received a quote from a publisher (there is a lot to navigate in today’s world of publishing in terms of the word publisher).

A popular publishing category has grown in the market and it’s what is termed hybrid publishing. This is different from traditional publishing and self-publishing (and enough food for another post).

The quote she received was to edit and publish her book, giving her 5 printed copies in return.

She emailed me because after receiving the invoice for $4000 to submit her manuscript, she had disconcerting dreams that night and wanted a second opinion.

We met for tea to answer her question about whether the $4000 was a good deal.

As a book coach, I serve both book and writer.

I make sure the book is great and puts its best face out into the world.

AND I work with the writer to select the best path for their purpose, budget, timeline and vision. We find the method of publishing that makes the most sense.

Here’s why hybrid publishing doesn’t make sense to me:

I have published 7 books of my own in the past 18 months. None of those books have cost $4000 to produce.

Anna and the Earth Angel came in just over $2500 – INCLUDING paying my illustrator, editors (yes, I used 2), interior and cover designer, hard copy proof and 500 copies of my book – printed on recycled paper (a pricier but more sustainable option, and a choice that was important to me).

In the process, I built a tribe of people who I continue to work with as I publish more books.

The Anna books are available worldwide through Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Indigo/Chapters.

Even better! I ran a crowdfunding campaign, which I support my coaching clients in doing, that covered the cost of producing the book.

A recent client of mine, earned over $14,000 in the crowdfunding campaign for his book. That’s a rarity. But it happens. And it’s what can unfold during the coaching process.

Another client self-published her book, opting for 35 print copies to start and worldwide distribution on Amazon. Her costs were less than $4000 and that included the coaching fees paid to me over 4 months. In the process, we expanded her book, secured her website, engaged beta readers, procured endorsements, 2 speaking engagements and a book launch in Sedona (because that was her dream).

In the case of the $4000-quote, the writer chose not to proceed with hybrid publishing and elected to work with me through the process of self-publishing.

Am I biased? Certainly. Because I was that writer. I had a book and searched for publishing options. And the one that made the most sense to me was self-publishing.

And I used a coach.

What I learned during the process (about writing, editing, publishing and myself) was priceless.

But it still cost me less than $4000. 😉


Is self-publishing right for you? I don’t know. It’s a conversation we’d have to have.

And I’m happy to have it.




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