Comparing Self-Publishing Of a Novel with Seeking a Corporate Publisher


Please kindly follow the assignment instruction and writing guideline in the attached file. Also cite all sources according to the APA format. No specific amount sources is required for this paper. Therefore do not worry about 1000 resource but I advise you to use many sources as possible. Thank you

3 single spaced pages (They are the equivalent of 6double spaced pages. That is why you are required to deliver a word count of 1650)


Comparing Self-Publishing Of a Novel with Seeking a Corporate Publisher




Executive Summary. 2

Introduction. 2

Corporate Publishing: Overview.. 3

Self-Publishing: Overview.. 3

Advantages and Disadvantages of Corporate Publishing. 3

Advantages and Disadvantages of Self-Publishing. 4

Recent Developments in Publishing. 4

Conclusion. 5

Recommendations. 6

References. 7

To: Robert Wamer, Article Acquisition Editor

From: Name of Student

Date: 22 February 2016

Subject: Research report on Comparison between Self-Publishing of a Novel with Seeking a Corporate Publisher.

            Attached is a document in docx format, of a report for a research paper on comparing self-publishing and corporate publishing. The article has analyzed the advantages and disadvantages of both self-publishing and traditional corporate publishing. It also provides a platform on which to choose the preferred method of publishing a novel based on an evaluation of the listed characteristics.

            The topic was extensively researched without any major setbacks. Information from publishing gurus and remarkable published writers was easily accessible. The biggest challenge was distinguishing between evidence-backed information and personal-opinion resources. Overall, the research topic was engaging, a characteristic I hope I successfully translated to the article.

Executive Summary

            The research paper is a deep analysis of the on-going debate in the publishing sector. It is a reflection of the unbalanced publishing decisions that writers and publishers have to make. Self-publishing is faster and has high returns over a short period while traditional publishing is slower but could generate extremely high returns over a longer period. The purpose of the research is not to overrule one over the other but to comprehensively compare the two modes of publishing. The recommendation made is on the improvement of both methods of publishing to ensure continues to perform the role for which it was established.



            This research study provides a comparison between self-publishing a novel and using a traditional corporate publisher. The aim is to determine the most suitable choice for novelists. Writing novels and other works of literature has increasingly become an economical gains in recent years. Publishing is a complex craft that involves formulating a systematic writing, typesetting, and printing processes. It remains relevant even in today’s rapidly changing information age. This article will begin by outlining this process for both procedures of publishing. It will go on to identify the advantages and disadvantages of the modes of publishing, the hierarchies, the returns, and writers’ intentions. In addition, the article will evaluate how authors are diversifying their income streams, and the role publishing plays a role in this area. This report will establish why this situation has remained the same for so long, up until recent years.

Corporate Publishing: Overview

            Authors are in the best position to draw comparisons in the world of publishing because most of them have had their share of experiences with both forms (Greco, 2004). As a result, most information and consulting concerning publishing is handled by former or continuing authors with experience. Corporate publishing simply follows a well-defined structure that involves contractual engagement between the author and the publisher (Bayley, 2010). The author completes his or her manuscript, writes a proposal, and submits both documents to a publisher either directly or through an agent. An in-house editor then reads through the manuscript to decide whether it complies with their standards, expectations on returns, and genres. If it does, then the author and publisher enter into contract and the writer transfers full or otherwise agreed ownership to the publisher for royalty compensation. The publisher then pays a down payment to the author to secure the book deal. The author is expected to start working on the book and complete it within the specified period. Depending on the contract, the advance is deducted from the author’s royalty until the amount is fully settled after which the author begins receiving full royalty amounts. In other cases the author keeps the advance regardless of the book sale outcome. The most important characteristic of this form of publishing is that the publisher is now responsible for the editing, branding, production, and marketing of the book. The author works with a publicist to advertise the book and the writer.

Self-Publishing: Overview

            Self-publishing follows a radically different approach. On completion of the manuscript, the writer is fully responsible for all the steps to be taken in the publishing process (Brewer, 2016). The author is responsible for not just editing, proof-reading, graphic layouts, production, advertising, and marketing but also the financial management of the publishing process. In the past, self-publishing involved keeping a lot of inventory and bulky productions. With the emergence of e-books, books are now printed on demand. A self-publishing author either takes on all the book responsibilities or outsources professionals to edit, cover graphics, print and advertise the book.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Corporate Publishing

            Owing to the aforementioned differences, there are several advantages and disadvantages to be contended with regardless of the publishing method a novelist uses. To begin with, corporate publishing is advantageous because it has been continuously tested and proven to be a viable publishing strategy for centuries. Most of its advantages revolve around almost guaranteed financial returns. Most traditional publishing houses are established literary brands that can sway the masses towards a certain readership trend (Sedwick, 2014). This factor contributes to efficiency in the marketing and advertising of a novel. Publishers have formed vast networks in media and content industries, and therefore take advantage of these avenues to promote their works (Hass, 2011; Boeri & Martin, 1996). An added advantage is the fact that the writer also receives instant branding that goes a long way in popularizing his novel. Moreover, the burdensome responsibility of transforming a manuscript to a ready-to sell novel is transferred from the writer to professional service providers. Most importantly is the quality regulation emphasized by the thorough editing and negotiations and the publicity that publishers can create for the authors and the book

            On the other hand, corporate publishing also carries many limitations for the novelist. Firstly, it may take two to three years to get a book published owing to the long selection criteria used to pick out books. After the submission of a manuscript, sorting through the many manuscripts could take as long as one year. If the book is accepted, then the publishing process may be spread out over another year. The second limitation is the loss of control or ownership over a novel. In some extreme situations, the writer may lose his or her personal brand and be forced to comply with the brand recommended by the publisher. Even worse, the publisher may re-direct a writer’s creative focus towards another course that is more suitable to the publisher (Herman, 2014). Finally, publishers expect authors to perform roles that were traditionally the publisher’s. These publishers also seem to strictly be following trends and will only promote books that could be bestsellers.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Self-Publishing

            Self-publishing capitalizes on the pitfalls of corporate publishing, but fails where traditional publishing succeeds (Carolan, 2013). Self-publishing can be very fast in the absence of monetary restrictions. The writer can work at their own pace whether slow, moderate, or fast to get their work published. The second advantage that has greatly popularized self-publishing is the control and rights retained over the book. The writer is the sole owner of the novel: he or she retains full rights, brand, and creative direction. As a result, financial returns are primarily the author’s. In addition, marketing has become easier because of the internet and global connectivity. At the same time, self-publishing is not without limitations, the most profound being that it is a risky path that involves tremendous efforts on the part of the novelist. Moreover, novelists who choose to self-publish may miss out on industry networks that are essential in marketing literary works (Levine, 2011). The publishers also present competition since they are already well-established. Another disadvantage is the large amounts of e-books that make it difficult to sort through relevant information.

Recent Developments in Publishing

            The Internet has been very instrumental in the emergence of a tipping point from corporate publishing to a serious consideration for self-publishing. It offers whole publishing package ranging from online editorship and online copyright companies to publishing platforms. With improved access to the Internet, research has been made simple and easily accessible (Arielle, 2010). Once publishing is done, social networks are then used to market and advertise the literary works to the targeted readers. These new possibilities have especially helped new and upcoming writers, some of whom have proceeded to achieve overnight literary success and recognition.


            Besides, the publishing industry has also developed due to growing co-dependence with the movie production industry. Many novelists have had their literary works turned into movies and television shows. Movie production companies simply buy rights to the novels they are interested in before adapting them into movies. For some novelists, this phenomenon emerges unintentionally; for others, the entire writing and publishing process is effected in a manner that makes it adaptable to film and television. It is important to identify this as a point of focus when choosing between self-publishing and corporate publishing. Unlike traditional publishing, self-publishing reduces the chances and exposure that may culminate in having a novel into a movie (Herman, 2014). Corporate publishing employs media avenues that create publicity for a novel, thereby increasing chances of attracting the attention of movie producers.

            Finally, a paradigm shift in terms of a shift from print to online publications has occurred in the publishing industry due to the emergence of the Internet. This development has created great benefits to the publishing industry since copies are produced on demand as opposed to hardcopies whose supply might be higher or lower than the demand, causing losses or dissatisfaction. The most popular form of online publishing is kindle books. Today, the number of kindle books being sold in the market has by far surpassed that of physical books (See figure 1 below). Thus, it is impossible for novelists who have embraced traditional publishing to ignore online publishing.

Figure 1: The graph shows sales of physical books against online kindle books (Source:  Quantarelli, 2012)


            It is obvious that corporate publishing still enjoys a dominant position among established novelists. Well-renown authors of our times still rely on this form of publishing. These writers are backed by established publishers, and they are in turn expected to write best-selling novels. Unfortunately, this method is very prohibitive for new writers who have no recognition. It has created a situation where old and recognized authors are retained at the expense of younger, more promising writers. These forgotten class of writers, comprising mostly young people, has turn to the Internet for self-publishing. However, this does not signify the death of corporate publishing, but instead shows that a new trend is emerging courtesy of young writers’ efforts to capitalize on current technological developments. Future projection and forecast create the impression that a new form of publishing that combines aspects of both self- and corporate publishing is emerging. The rationale of this move is to capitalize on the advantages of each method. Ultimate, the publishing method that a novelist chooses should be informed by personal choice, current strategy, and long-term goals.


            Based on the analysis made, this research report recommends the following.

  1. Self-publishing should be embraced and regulated to offer the much-needed flexibility while maintaining high quality of literary works since it has proved to be an excellent platform for giving industry exposure to emerging novelists (Auletta, 2010).
  2. Novelists who seek to retain complete control over their creative works and are ready to put in the required financial outlay and personal effort should opt for self-publishing.
  3. Self-publishing should be enhanced in terms of the system of procedures and references used in order to facilitate the creation of industry networks (Levine, (2011).
  4. Flexibility should be promoted in corporate publishing in order to enhance its appeal to both established writers and those launching their careers in today’s information age.


On the other hand, this report makes the following predictions for the publishing industry:

  1. Contrary to conventional view, corporate publishing is not about to be phased out in favor of self-publishing, reason being that traditional corporate publishers are turning to online publishing to reach more readers (Herman, 2014).
  2. Corporate publishers will continue using the Internet as a vehicle of distribution while still maintaining their traditional editorial and selection procedures.
  3. Novels published through the corporate method will continue to appeal to a larger section of the market due to brand recognition, and higher credibility.
  4. Both methods of publishing will continue undergoing adjustment to adapt to today’s dynamic Internet age.
  5. As more novelists seek newer ways of publishing, the popularity of self-publishing will continue surpassing that of corporate publishing.
  6. The resulting changes will benefit novelists and readers alike because they will produce new practices in terms of how creative works are produced and consumed at a time when most people prefer reading web versions of those works to their print counterparts.


Arielle, E. (2010). The essential guide to getting your book published. New York, NY: Workman Publishing Company.

Auletta, K. (2010). Publish or Perish. The New Yorker, 5, 1-12.

Bayley, S. (2010). Beautiful, perfect, supreme chunk of paper. BBC, April 6, 2010.

Brewer, R. (2016). Writer’s market 2016. Columbus, OH: Writer’s Digest Books.

Greco, A (2004). The book publishing industry. London: Routledge.

Herman, J. (2014). Jeff Heman’s guide to book publishers, editors and literary agents. San Francisco, CA: New World Library.

Levine, M. (2011). The fine print of self-publishing. Saint Paul, MN: Bascom Hill Publishing,

Quantarelli, S. (2012). Internet and publishing. 5 July, 2012. Web.

Sedwick, H. (2014). Self-publisher’s legal handbook. New York, NY: Ten Gallon Press.

Boeri, R., & Martin, H. (1996). Corporate online/ CD-ROM Publishing: The design and tactical issues. 3.

Carolan, S. E. (2013). Self-publishing: Opportunities and threats in a new age of Mass culture. Academic Journal UMUC , 5.

Hass, B. H. (2011). Intrapreneurship and corporate Venturing in the media business: A theoretical framework and examples from the german publishingindustry. Media Business Studies , 22.

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