In my previous post, I talked about eBook publishing for beginners. Self-publishing an eBook is a great way to make side income. Then again, so is going through the traditional publishing process.

To help you decide which platform is right for you, I’ve compiled a brief list of reasons to go with one or the other.

Here are the pros and cons of tradional and self-publishing.

Traditional Publishing

Traditional publishing has been around for a long time, meaning its methods are tried and true. Yet there are definitely aspects of this process that can be a turn off for some people. 

Here are the pros and cons of traditional publishing.

The Pros

No money upfront

From the editing to the cover art to the marketing, you won’t have to spend a dime out of pocket if you don’t want to.

Bookstore shelves

Most authors who are traditionally published will see their novels hit shelves at some time or another. This is especially true of the Big Five Publishers.

Perceived credibility

Many book consumers automatically associate the traditional publishing platform with higher quality novels.

The Cons

Extra marketing

If your novel or book is not projected to do well, the publisher may not do as much marketing as you want them to. In that case, the task will fall to you.

Lower royalties

Traditionally published authors earn from 5% – 10% royalties on hard copies and only 20% on eBooks.

No control

When you take the traditional publishing route, you will have very little control over the book cover, the synopsis, and the way the publisher wants to market your book.

If you want to see your novel in a bookstore, go with traditional publishing.


Self-publishing has exploded since the introduction of platforms like Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing and is an ideal path for those who want to start and online business. Since this platform is so new, though, it still has a few kinks to work out that may make this process a hard pass.

Here are the pros and cons of self-publishing.  

The Pros

Total control

You get total control over everything when you self-publish, from the book cover to the blurbs to every single word that ends up on the page. 

Higher royalties

Self-published authors earn 100% royalties on hard copies and up to 70% royalties on eBooks. 

Growing market

Self-publishing has exploded and, since it is a growing market, you can easily stand out with a high quality, well-written novel or book. 

The Cons

A huge investment

When you decide to self-publish, you’re choosing to make your book a business. You will pay for the editing, the cover art, the marketing, the bind up, and so much more.

Bookstore shelves

It takes a lot of networking and finger-crossing to get your books into bookstores if you aren’t going the traditional publishing route.

Perceived low quality

Wrong though they may be, consumers tend to treat self-published novels with more skepticism and criticism. 

The self-publishing industry has exploded with the help of platforms like Amazon’s KDP.

So there you have it! Leave a comment and let me know which platform you want to go with and why? Happy writing!

Want More?

Series: How to Earn Passive Income with Affiliate Links as a Writer

Series Post #1: How to Create a Niche as a Writer

Series Post #2: Are You Qualified to Write in Your Niche?

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