Traditional Publishing Vs. Self-Publishing

Writing a book is a great achievement, but what do you do when it actually comes to getting your book out there? Nowadays there are many options for authors looking to publish their book that it can become a real minefield.  

We look into the two main ways which are both rather popular with authors of today; Traditional and Self-Publishing. Both have their good and bad points. One may suit one author where the other will suit another. There is no right or wrong way to getting your book out there, all that matters is what you want from it.


Traditional Publishing  

With traditional publishing, the author completes a manuscript, sends a query or proposal and their manuscript to a publishing house or agent. If the manuscript is first sent to an agent they will then send it on to potential publishers for the author, that is if they accept to take on the manuscript. Within a publishing house, an editor will read the manuscript and decide whether or not it is worth publishing.

If a publisher does decide to publish the authors work, they will buy the rights of the author and pay them in advance for any future royalties. Royalties being the percentage the author gets from the retail price of their book.

The publisher will then sort out all elements of the book including design, marketing and price.


  • Gives you the confidence that your writing is good enough to be published 
  • Easier to get your books in stores and shops
  • Have a professional team to back you
  • Literary prizes are more likely


  • Publishers take a percentage of your book sales
  • Slow process
  • Don’t have much control over the process
  • Only take on work that they believe is good enough
  • Low royalty rates


This type of publishing is a little different. With Self-Publishing the author is the publisher. The author has full responsibility for the book from the proofreading, to the design, to the selling. The author is in charge. People/Companies can be employed by the author to do such things with the book but all funding for the book must come from the author or in some cases authors may take part in events such as crowdfunding.


  • Have control over the whole process
  • The possibility to make more money
  • Publishing houses are likely to take more notice of self-published books
  • Higher royalties


  • Difficult
  • Sometimes isolating
  • You may find bookshops won’t accept self-published books.


We posted a poll up on our social media to see what our followers, both authors and publishers, thoughts were on the different routes of publishing. Whether they preferred Traditional or Self. The results showed there to be a 50/50 split.

One of our most loyal and long-standing customers, Goylake Publishing posted an interesting comment: “We think that books published by independent publishers and authors offer readers greater variety in terms of subject matter and story structure. It is argued that traditional publishers act as ‘gatekeepers’, but we would respectfully suggest that readers should be trusted with that role. Self-publishing has a long tradition – Dickens self-published some of his titles while many modern, well established, authors are now choosing the self-published route. As readers, we look for good books, regardless of the publisher, and we believe this trend is common amongst modern readers and will continue.”



Choosing the right publishing route is down to you. If you have the motivation and dedication to create, market and sell your book then great. If time isn’t a big issue and you feel you need more help then that’s fine too.  You just need to get a clear idea of exactly what you want from your book and what you are prepared to do.

We hope this has helped. Please share with fellow authors and give them a helping hand.

Pros & Cons of Paperbacks & Hardbacks

Tip 203- Paperback or Hardback

Paperback or hardback? That’s a question that many people will ask themselves when it comes to printing their book. We thought we would look into the pros and cons of both types to give you a helping hand in making this decision.


Paperbacks are a popular choice for many. They offer a professional finish and provide a high-quality option for reduced weight and cost. Paperbacks are used widely throughout the book industry whether it be a novel, poetry, children’s book or an autobiography; they suit all.


  • Easy to carry around- they are a lot lighter than hardbacks, making them more portable.
  • Cost effective- they are the cheapest book printing and binding option out there.
  • Flexible- they can be made into any sort of vision you have. Whether it’s special paper, a specific effect on the cover or an unusual size. We will try our utmost to produce your paperback as weird and wonderful as you like it.


  • The cover may damage quicker than hardbacks- the covers on paperback are printed on a heavyweight card (not board). This means that the cover can be more prone to damages. However, we take a huge amount of care in your books from production to delivery, so damaged books are unlikely.


The demand for hardbacks has grown rapidly over the past couple of years with many people choosing hardbacks for a more ‘special’ feel. With the number of choices you have with hardbacks you really can make your book your own.


  • Tend to last longer- with the thickness and quality of the cover it gives the book protection that you wouldn’t necessarily get with a paperback.
  • 2 covers in 1- if you choose to have a hardback with cloth and dustjacket it allows you to have two different styles of cover in one book.
  • Looks nicer- even a standard hardback tends to look professional and luxurious. Plus, with the added extras, you can really make it look high end.


  • Expensive- there is a lot of work that goes into making a hardback so they tend to be more expensive than paperbacks.
  • Not very practical- the weight and the extra thickness that hardbacks have makes them a heavy product to carry around.


In all honesty, it really depends on what you want from your book as to what form of book you go for. If you want to reduce spending and have an easily portable book then paperback is what you should go for. However, if you are looking for a more special, high end feel to the book and are not too worried about portability, then hardbacks are the way to go.

Some people decided to print both paperback and hardback. They may go for more paperbacks than hardbacks and then promote the hardbacks as being a special edition. This isn’t difficult to do as generally the text is the same in both, paperback and hardback, the cover just needs slight editing to fit the hardback.

We are happy to give you a quote and advise on paperbacks and hardbacks just get in touch.

We hope this helped if you would like more info take a look at our services page.