So you want to be a book publisher. Here are a few things you need to know first.
Patience is a virtue – so you need to be virtuous in this pursuit.
Printing books can be expensive (per book cost) especially when ordering fewer than 750 books.
Ordering too many books can be hazardous to your health and your wealth if you can’t sell them.
Picking winning books – that is to say profitable books, is harder than picking winners at the horse races.
Every author has their own peculiarities, so you need to excel in human relations skills to keep all of them happy.
Finding the right title is one of the toughest parts of the publishing process. Be ready to suffer through 100 - 250 titles before a great title is born. It is an important part of the marketing process.
Have at least three front covers designed by your graphic designer before the best one is chosen. Some books sink or fly off the shelves because of the visual appeal of the front cover.
Check printer prices before committing to one printer. Prices can vary by as much as 100 per cent.
If profit is important to you, publish only books that are commissioned. In other words, win publishing book tenders based on a profitable submission. If you win, you can’t lose (money that is).
Have your head examined before you get into book publishing; then if everything is sound, start making sound decisions. You’ll be entering an industry where big publishers and big distributors in a rapidly changing book world make every effort to keep you off your game. If you’re still game, make sure you can find a good distributor – even if there aren’t many to choose from in Canada.