How Much Money (and Time) Can You Spend Self-Publishing?

When it comes to your self-publishing budget, you’ll need to budget money and budget time. Although money is the first thought that springs to mind with budget, time is just as important. Publishing is a complex process, and even if you hire a self-publishing company to help, there are still parts of the process you’ll have to do yourself.

Marketing is a prime example. Inexpensive or free options, like using social media, promoting your book on Goodreads, or blogging, often require a larger time investment. These options help you build your author platform, but the process isn’t immediate. Budgeting your time is crucial for success.

While you can (and in many cases should), for example, hire a publicist to pitch and market your book, some of the tasks simply have to come from you—such as updating your social media accounts. Other parts of the publishing process (editing, for example) are a collaborative undertaking.

Budgeting money is less a question of how much you’re willing to spend and more a question of how best to spend that money. Where are you now, and what’s most important to you? For example, the cleaner your manuscript is, the less you’ll have to spend on editing. Want to have the opportunity to get your book into bookstores? You’ll want to invest in a stellar cover design. See how that works?

Here’s a list of some of the main expenses you’ll want to budget for:

  • Editing
  • Book design
  • Printing and distribution
  • Marketing

It’s important to plan ahead and make sure you have enough money for the entire publishing process. You don’t want to hit your release date only to realize you have no money (or time) for marketing—when marketing is key to spreading the word about your book.

If you have to wait to save up money, that’s okay. It’s better to push your release date back rather than rush through. When you create, publish, and market the best book you can, your book’s chances for success will increase, too.

How Mill City Press Helps

With the Author Learning Center, Mill City Press provides the information you’ll need to make informed decisions about where you want to spend your money. Our Publishing Consultants are always available to talk to you about the cost of our self-publishing services.

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