Cost incurred in Self-Publishing a Book

Self-publishing is when authors publish their own books either as paperbacks and/or e-books. In the case of self-publishing authors have two options: one is to completely do everything themselves or alternatively to outsource some or all of the self-publishing tasks to professionals.

Processes involved in Self-publishing: Editing, formatting, printing, publishing and marketing are the basic steps for self-publishing. The total cost for self-publishing a book may vary depending upon the quantity and quality of the book.


Editing: Includes content (developmental) editing, copy editing and proofreading which can make all the difference between an average book and a great one. For a top quality, impressive book you need more than just a proofread or spell-check. Content editing and copy editing are the two major types of editing. The cost for the editing will depend on which type of editing you need and who you hire. Proofreading can cost anywhere from $1-$3 per page, copy editing can cost around $3-$7 per page, and for content editing you can expect to pay around $6-$10 or more per page.

Formatting: Formatting your manuscript for print or as an e-book can be done yourself if you have the time and are willing to learn how to do it. However, if you are not knowledgeable in this area, you can hire a professional to do it for you. Costs vary widely depending on various issues. You can be looking at anything from $100-$500.

Cover Design: Cover design for a paperback will cost more than a cover design for an e-book as it includes the spine and back cover too. Cover design for an e-book can cost in the region of $50-$100 and for a paperback $200-$600 for a good designer.

Print-on-demand: Print-on-demand is one of the most cost-effective traditions for self-publishing. As the name itself suggests the publisher prints and delivers a book as and when it is needed. This is a trouble-free method to save costs when it comes to the individual self-publisher on a budget. Upfront costs for print-on-demand can be next to nothing, however the printing cost per book will be much higher than using a bulk printer.

ISBN: Getting an ISBN for your book is essential if you plan to sell your book through standard book distribution channels. The costs for buying ISBNs depend on the agency in the different countries. In the United States a single ISBN at present costs $125, while 10 ISBNs cost $250, 100 cost $575 and so on.

And for the final processes of publishing and marketing your books, we’re here to help you!