So you want to start your own publishing company. Believed it or not it really isn’t that difficult to do. Keeping it going and profitable is the challenge. Starting your own publishing company is not for the faint at heart. Go into it knowing that every decision made is on you. Your company will succeed or fail based on the decisions you make. Also know, you may not see a profit right away. In fact, it will probably be three to five years before you see green. However, the joy and pride you experience every time you put a book on the market is unbelievable. Each book is like your baby, from inception to birth. Here are the steps I took to establish SIRI Enterprises, my publishing company.
1. First I knew I wanted to self-publish. You need to determine if you want to publish just your books or publish other authors work.
2. Once that decision is made, write a business plan. I used, The Ernest & Young Business Plan Guide by Eric S. Siegel, Brian R. Ford and Jay M. Borstein, as my resource.
3. Apply for your business license with your local city or county. Contact the IRS to obtain your EIN (Employer Identification Number @ http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/article/0,,id=98350,00.html). Also, set up with your state tax department.
4. Go to the US Copyright Office @ https://eco.copyright.gov/ to establish an account
5. Do the same with The Library of Congress @ http://pcn.loc.gov/ to establish an account
6. Purchase a set of ISBN @ http://isbn.org/standards/home/index.asp (you can purchase from 1-1000 at a time)
7. Determine if you want a Vanity Press or Print On Demand to handle your packaging (ie: LULU, Smashwords, Create Space, etc…) Or if you want total control you can hire a consultant to handle page design and covers design. I use http://judithwansley.com/default.aspx
8. Research printer and/or distributor for your books. You can use just a book printer or one that does both. I use http://www1.lightningsource.com/
9. Establish a relationship with editors to use when needed.
10. You don’t have to do this, but I did set up an account with Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble to handle eBooks sales.
There are pitfalls in everything you do. It is no different in the publishing world. There are Vanity or Independent presses out there that will promise you the world, but will not tell you the cost until the end. Do your research before you sign up for anything. Take your time to establish your company Do it right the first time. I spent thousands of dollars that was wasted because I did not do my research first. Are you anxious to get your book into print, of course, so was I. And I paid the price. I hope my knowledge will save you time and money. Some things a company will offer you for a price, you can do yourself, such as obtaining Bar Codes, ISBN numbers, or Copyrights for your books. All of these things you can do yourself, for just the cost of the product.
Now, if you still want to start your own publishing company, I have to tell you, it has been a very exciting endeavor. While I still would like to be published the traditional route, doing for myself has been most rewarding. It has prepared me with the knowledge and skills it takes to get a book to print. When I do decided to submit to a traditional publisher, I go in with a little more knowledge about the process than some. By the way, I’ve only submitted to one publisher. I like being in control.
Well, that’s all I have. Good Luck and remember, Believe in yourself and you can accomplish anything.
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