How to Start Your Own Book Publishing Business

10 Apr




Where to find all these publishing business information – including lots of links:

95% of all authors have to do the marketing for their books – even if they are the “lucky” ones who found a major, traditional publisher. Only celebrities and star-authors, such as James Patterson or Danielle Steel get publicity from their publishers.  The question for authors is now: Why should they sell their manuscripts for a pittance to publishing houses at all, if these publishers are sending out a mass-press-release only and are otherwise not involved in the marketing part? What are they good for?

Authors are smart and able to start their own publishing business, REAL publishing, not POD and not Vanity Publishing: Finding and getting quotes or referrals for an editor, a book lay-out company or book designer, cover artist, e-book formatting company and a printer is not difficult.

Setting up their own company
can be done online – in minutes. Find all the necessary information here:

Writing a business plan
is the work of a couple of days, researching all aspects of the publishing enterprise.

Finding distributors / fulfillment company
for your print-version of the book is not a problem, distributors mostly require just three books to be listed as a publishing business, and if authors have not written three books yet, they can band together with other authors to reach this minimum.

Books available for future publishers
Aaron Shepard has written two books about the topic of book distribution: POD for Profit and Aiming at Amazon, both contain very detailed information for small publishers.
Another great source is Dan Poynter’s Self-Publishing Manual, a classic publishing guide book

Learning how to market your book and getting lots of publicity support
is offered in a variety of on- and off-line classes by

How to create a business plan
for your book publishing company was the topic of our former blog post

Business name
Be careful when choosing a name for your book publishing company. Keep the name neutrally and usable in a variety of languages. Avoid your or your books name and survey several professionals for their input. Last but not least do a name check before your spend money on registering or using the name.

Start-up financing and crowd funding
for your book publishing business is preferable through your own savings. Try to find the most economical way to start your publishing business. Don’t order any print runs before you have substantial orders, rather go in the beginning with a recommendable POD, such as CreateSpace. In several countries, such as USA or Germany for example, financing the creation of books has become main stream. Kickstarter, IndiGoGo or STARTNEXT  (German) are crowd funding sources, writers can use.

ISBN and bar codes 
In a former blog post we explained how to get an International Standard Book Number (ISBN) and bar codes in several countries.

How to copyright your books and what’s the benefit can be found in this article

Most countries require publishers to submit one copy of each book for cataloging in a government archives. In the USA for sample it is done by registering with a Library of Congress number.

How to get into the “Books in Print”, the worldwide database and to register your book for FREE! with Bowker was the topic of other blog posts.

There is no world or national organization that determines a clear-cut genre or category for each book written.
However it is extremely important to choose the right genre (or several) in order for your books ranking, e.g. on Amazon.

Books you publish, should be available in other countries / languages too!  Not always easy to find a literary agent who is specialized in foreign rights, get lists here:  or in this article:
and how to work with literary agents is covered in several previous blog posts.

A great article, how to develop a publication timeline can be found in this article.

Check out a variety of online retailers to “put your eggs in many baskets”.

Setting up a website for your book publishing company, establish good practices in Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

and how to get relevant links are the topic of several former blog posts.
To read them all just click on Website & SEO (28 articles!) on the right hand side of our blog.

More resources and advice are the topics of blog articles for the next days, including:

  • Pricing your books and standard book industry discounts
  • Advice and useful links for book layout, printing etc.
  • Financial management / accounting for book publishers
  • Finding freelancers for editing, design, proofreading, webdesign etc.
  • Marketing strategies for book publishing companies
  • professional associations for book publishers
  • educational programs in book publishing
  • Information about book awards and contests

With 30 year experience in both, print and now e-publishing, we can provide you with many more tips, background information and support for setting up your own publishing enterprise – additional to the huge amount of promotion you get in our online and off-line seminars.



Re-blogging this article is encouraged, just use the tiny re-blog button on top of this page!

If you enjoyed this blog post, please feel free to check out all previous posts of this blog (there are more than 720 of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter,, Facebook, Tumblr and StumpleUpon.
If you would like to get help in all things publishing, have your book heavily promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites: We offer all this and more for only a “token” of $1 / day for 3 months. Learn more about this individual book marketing help:

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@111publishing 111Publishing @ Google+


Hyper Smash



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7 responses to “How to Start Your Own Book Publishing Business

  1. business plan outline

    August 1, 2013 at 4:47 pm

    I was suggested this website by my cousin. I am not sure
    whether this post is written by him as nobody else know such detailed about my trouble.
    You’re amazing! Thanks!

  2. Ashlee

    November 22, 2013 at 3:37 pm

    This was a great blog. Thank you for your input.

    • ebooksinternational

      November 23, 2013 at 9:44 am

      Thanks Ashlee,
      it is a series that includes tips on how to actually set up your publishing business, about book production, book distribution etc. and will continue Monday, November 25th, stay tuned.
      Have a lovely weekend,


    November 27, 2013 at 11:19 pm

    Fantastic post however I was wanting to know if you could write a litte more on
    this topic? I’d be very grateful if you could elaborate a little bit
    further. Appreciate it!

  4. I.Vicente

    January 13, 2014 at 2:22 pm

    Great bog and most helpful! Thanks. I have one question: If I already have a company that is in a different field, IT, can I rebrand that company as a Publisher, or create a division for the publishing of my own ebooks, PODs?

  5. mkmcfarlane

    February 9, 2014 at 1:05 am

    Absolutely fantastic! Exactly what I was looking for without knowing it!

  6. Gina

    May 2, 2014 at 10:13 pm

    Extremely helpful. Thank you.


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