How much does indie publishing cost?

For a list of ballpark prices for developmental editing, copyediting, proofreading, book formatting etc., check out Reedsy’s price calculator. Editorial can cost anything from hundreds to several thousand pounds.

What are all the services I need when publishing an indie book?

Besides editorial, which can include developmental editing before preparing your book for publication (copyediting and proofreading), you will need to work with a book formatter and cover designer. I highly advise you work with a marketing/publishing consultant to draw up a detailed marketing plan too.

Please be aware that even if you hire a marketing consultant, indie publishing still requires you to put in many hours of marketing yourself. You need to build an audience on social media and set up a newsletter for starters. If you hate the idea of marketing, traditional publishing may suit you better.

Indie publishing vs trad publishing is like the difference between being self-employed and employed. If self-employed, you have to wear many hats if you want to be commercially successful.

Should I go with a packager (one-stop shop)?

In short, self-publishing packagers (one-stop shops) suit people who are short on time but are prepared to pay a premium for the convenience.

Authors I know who have worked with them have typically paid significantly more than they would have done had they had hired the different services independently – but that convenience suits them.

I’ve worked with a few authors who have gone with a packager for their first book and then assembled a team independently.

If your aim is to just publish one book and you are both busy and prepared significant extra expenses for the same (or in some cases poorer) quality, while losing some creative control over your schedule etc., then packagers can be a good choice.

Some take a percentage of your royalties, so that’s something to consider when you sign a contract with them.

With indie publishing, you really have to put in the hours building your audience on social media and through a newsletter and website yourself, even if you work with a publishing consultant. If you’re serious about marketing and able to put in the hours, then indie publishing can be great! I highly recommend joining ALLi.

Where can I find a book formatter, cover designer, and publishing consultant?

I am very happy to recommend formatters and cover designers in my network. If you are a first-time author new to marketing, then I offer marketing consultations to come up with a plan for marketing your book. If you are looking for someone who exclusively offers this service and has their pulse on new marketing trends in the indie scene, then I am also happy to recommend specialist publishing consultants for you.