If you want to have total control over your book publishing process, then self-publishing may be the best route for your writing project. From concept to completion, self-publishing allows you to have your hand in every decision made. Most traditional publishers will contract your content, and, from that point on, you have very little say in what takes place.
With self-publishing, all the decisions are yours to make. Though it will mean more legwork on your part, you will drive every single step of the process.
You will have the final say on all substantive editing suggestions, which allows you to protect your content, your message, and the story you want to bring to the world. While you should most definitely hire top-notch editors to guide you and make your content shine, ultimately you will approve or deny all content critiques.
Same goes for title, cover design, and back-cover copy—you will be front and center, making all the important decisions that go into bringing a standout book to life.
I do not know many traditional publishing houses that involve the author—especially not first-time authors—in titling, cover design, and back-cover copywriting. These decisions are driven by the marketing teams at publishing houses, and typically you are the last to know what has been decided. You will propose a title; you may weigh-in on cover design and back-cover copy, but ultimately the final decisions are out of your hands. Which—after spending so much time, energy, and often blood, sweat, and tears writing a manuscript—can be a huge letdown.
If you want to have total control and be a part of these creative steps, self-publishing affords you the opportunity to drive these critical decisions. You can craft and create the most engaging title and back-cover copy for your book, and you can interview and hire the editing team and cover designer.
Since you choose the designer, you’ll be there to walk yours through your content and help with the conceptualization of your cover. Getting the cover right is a critical step in the publishing process, but it’s also one of the most rewarding steps. Seeing your story come to life on a book jacket is incomparable.
It’s pretty great to be able to see your project from start to finish. If you’re not ready to deal with the stress of agents, proposals, and the hands-off approach of traditional publishing, self-publishing will be perfect for you.