Blue Handle Publishing
Let’s first start by recognizing something about Hybrid Publishing, and it used to be called Vanity publishing. Though people don’t like the name “Vanity,” it is where it began. The idea of publishing for yourself is a form of vanity. The industry had become filled with some companies preying on naïve authors, and many bad cases arose. To fix the image, the term HYBRID was born.
Hybrid publishing is like hiring a consultant to help you “self-publish.” There are some options where you share royalties because they feel they can add funds (marketing) to your book. As the author, you will always spend money in this process, as you are paying them to help you do a job. It’s like hiring a professional painter for your house. You can paint a wall, but will it come out as nice or be done as efficiently?
Hybrid Publishing operates with a different revenue model than traditional publishing while retaining much of the traditional publishing practices. However, rather than offering the author an advance the hybrid publisher charges the author a fee to access their publishing services. Hybrid publishing is also known as vanity publishing, or the pay-for-print model. Essentially, you find a company with publishing industry knowledge and experience to help you get your book into the marketplace. Hybrid publishing companies each have their own specific revenue model, where some lower the cost of publishing for a piece of the royalty, while some companies have a higher initial price but the author maintains allroyalty rights. You could almost think of Hybrid Publishing as assisted self-publishing.
Pros of Hybrid Publishing
If you don’t feel comfortable self-publishing on your own, and you’ve failed to get your manuscript picked up by a traditional publishing house, hybrid publishing may be your answer. Hybrid publishing circumvents certain barriers that exist with agents and traditional publishing, while still offering industry expertise and other helpful marketing tools to help you promote your book. Overall, it’s difficult to get your book picked up by a traditional publishing house, so Hybrid Publishing could be your answer. It’s essentially the solution that lies between traditional and self-publishing. But unlike self-publishing, you have help. There is someone there to minimize, if not remove, mistakes or issues that would potentially pop up if you did it independently.
Cons of Hybrid Publishing
A primary con of hybrid publishing is that the author assumes financial risk. You are paying for a service and, as the book industry is often unpredictable, you may or may not get the result you want. There are just as many bad or poor hybrid publishers out there as there are good hybrid publishers, so it requires that you do your research and find one that you feel fits your needs. This does not mean that everyone is out there to get your money, but some will inevitably take the money, do the minimum work and close the deal. Research and making sure you can potentially work well with the company is key.
How to Hybrid Publish
Once again, do your research, and find the right pay-for-print or hybrid publisher. You are spending money, usually more than you would if you self-published. It is an investment on your part if you feel unable to tackle the industry on your own, and it’s important to make the right choice. We always suggest shopping around and asking questions. After all, it’s your money and your manuscript. Two things you worked very hard for.