So I’m editing a manuscript for a woman who wants to self-publish her book. She signed on with a self-publishing company and has been considering their various packages.
This outfit quoted her rates for their services—including $5,000 to edit her manuscript. And $150 more just to make the book available on Kindle. These are just two of the large array of services offered.
$5,000 is an exorbitant rate for editing a manuscript of fewer than 300 pages. I know for a fact that there are great freelance editors out there who charge far less. And $150 to upload the book to Kindle—that is just ridiculous. Anyone can—for free—upload a manuscript to sell on Kindle.
To follow up on yesterday’s post about self-publishing options, a big part of the problem I have with self-pub companies is this outrageous up-selling, particularly for things you can do on your own without much trouble or expense.
Here’s a list of services I don’t recommend paying for:
• Copyright registration: Easy to do yourself at U.S. Copyright Office
• Obtain an ISBN: Via ISBN.org
• Website Set-up: Create your own simple WordPress site, which can be a blog or a full-fledged website, for little to no money.
What is worth paying for?
• Editing: With all of the money you didn’t pay for the above services, if you can afford it I recommend professional editing. Of course, I’m biased on this point. If you have an alternative to share feel free to do so in the comments.
• Design: A good cover is essential. Unless you have amazing design skills, a good freelance designer is worth the investment.
More tips, advice and caveats for DIY authors? Please share here.