I belong to several online authors’ groups. I like to stay on top of what other authors are doing, what’s going on in the publishing world and what some of the main areas of concern are for authors.

A topic that often comes up has to do with being published by a traditional publisher compared to self publishing. As with anything, both have pros and cons.

It's important to know that many of the most famous authors started as self published authors. Whatever your opinion about self publishing compared to traditional publishing there are as many opinions as there are authors.

Below are a few things to consider with whichever way you decide to go.

Publisher downside:

• You don’t have control over many of the decisions.
• Before you can sell copies you have to buy them from the publisher.
• You may not get a better price on wholesale book purchases than a book store gets.
• Short shelf life – often only a matter of weeks.
• Slow turnaround time for acceptance of manuscript - often as much as 2 or 3 years.
• Lots of rejection on a manuscript.
• You have to have a strong platform for marketing.
• You have to market.

Publisher upside:

Publishing house picks up initial costs.
• Little, if any, out-of-pocket expense.
• You may get an advance, and yet, if the books don’t sell you might have to refund some of the advance.
• Perceived prestige.

Self Publishing downside:

• More investment costs on your part.
• You have to market.
• You have to store the books.
• Outdated perception that a “real” publisher won’t publish your works.

Self Publishing upside:

• You have control and make all the key decisions.
• Fast turnaround.
• Higher profit margin.
• You can target to very unique markets.
• Many mainstream houses are looking for excellent self published books to make their own.
• You retain all rights.
• You can test the market with a low run.
• Print on demand minimizes your out-of-pocket expenses.

This is by no means a complete list. However, all of this is worth considering as you move forward with your publishing decisions.

Another thing to consider is that just because there is a downside to something this is not a bad thing. It simply means you are going in with open eyes and can make necessary adjustments as appropriate.

Author's Bio: 

Kathleen Gage: Receive Power Profits 101: Must-Dos in Marketing
to Make More Money This Month Than Your Entire Last Year! FREE video http://www.powerupforprofits.com/

Kathleen works with consciously focused speakers, authors, coaches and consultants helping them to build six figure businesses by packaging their knowledge so they can reach more of their market, impact positive change and create multiple streams of revenue.