How to Publish with BookBaby

by CJ McDaniel // August 28  

As self-publishing services continue to become increasing popular, there’s no doubt that other companies would hit the scene. Competing with Amazon might not be a possibility, but companies that help indie authors are growing in popularity. BookBaby is one of them.

If you’re not too keen on designing and distributing your own books, BookBaby does that for you. They will print physical copies as well as design eBooks, whatever fits your need. BookBaby really does all the work a traditional publisher would do, but for a price.

Do-It-Yourself Book Publishing?

You might just ask yourself why you don’t do all the work yourself. Amazon has all the tools to allow you to upload a cover image and format your book. Yes, saving money is important, but if you want your book to be successful, you should consider this option. No one is an expert at everything, so having a professional look over your work isn’t a bad idea.

In a lot of ways, BookBaby takes what Amazon does, but pushes it a few steps further. Once you upload your document, the services you get depend on what package you pay for. Here’s what they offer:

• Professional editing.
• Cover design services.
• Book Printing (Printing-on-Demand).
• eBook conversion.
• eBook and printed book distribution.
• Book marketing.
• Single book printing.

Is it Worth the Cost?

Of course, you’re ultimately the one who gets to decide if a service is worth the cost you pay. If you hope to be successful as an indie author, you need all the help you can get. You can definitely do all of these things yourself, but it’s probably worth the cost in the end to have professional services.

Even if you can do part of the process well, you can choose individual packages to suit your needs. Maybe you’re an excellent graphic artist and have no problem with the front cover, but you want a good editor to look it over? Perfect! They offer relatively cheap editing services and promise an 8-10 business day turnaround.

BookBaby offers a full self-publishing package for around $1,500 that offers most of their non-editing services. It will cost around $3,000 (depending on the length of your book), to have your work professionally detailed and distributed like a publisher would do.

It’s All On-Demand

The only downside to using BookBaby instead of Amazon is you will pay a little more for each individual printed book. You can decide if it’s worth it depending on your need. If you want to buy a lot of extra copies to give away, it would be cheaper to use Amazon. The problem is, Amazon doesn’t offer all the same services you’ll find with BookBaby.

Just like Amazon, the process is on-demand. As soon as someone orders a book, it’s printed, which is a major cost saver. Traditional publishers eat the cost of publishing a small number of books they believe will sell, which is why it’s so difficult to get in with them. That’s why investing money into these services might be worth it for you.

You get everything a traditional publisher would do, but for a price. The risk is still in your hands. You may never sell enough copies to justify paying that kind of money. At the end of the day, if you have the ability, all of these services come free using Amazon and CreateSpace. But if you want a good-looking book with a traditional feel, BookBaby is for you.

About the Author

CJ grew up admiring books. His family owned a small bookstore throughout his early childhood, and he would spend weekends flipping through book after book, always sure to read the ones that looked the most interesting. Not much has changed since then, except now some of those interesting books he picks off the shelf were designed by his company!