So far in my publishing bumbling, I have tried out two different self-publishing platforms:
I found Lulu to be pretty straightforward, although there were a couple of printing issues, and even when I used their template it still said the page size was different than their requirements. What more can I do than use their template? Anyway, the proof copy took about a week and a half to arrive from the time of ordering. The print quality (other than a bit of a placement thing which only happened in one book) is good. They offer different distribution outlets.
A note about pricing – there is a minimum price, and the author still only gets a small percentage of the book price and this decreases if the purchase is made anywhere other than Lulu. (Don’t know how this compares to other platforms)
CreateSpace is more of a recent venture for me, made after a few people said how good it was. I haven’t found it quite so simple: for one there are so many steps to the process, although at least they make it clear where you’ve got to using a checklist. Once files have been uploaded they have to be reviewed by you, reviewed by CS people, then approved by you. Which is actually sort of good because on my first attempt I put the wrong ISBN on my copyright page, and they picked up on it. Before you can look at distribution and pricing options you have to set up your royalty options, and for that they want banking details and numbers I hadn’t heard of before but which I have to try to find.
And then there’s the shipping. Ordering today, on standard delivery costing $4.88 the estimated delivery is 10th August. There are two quicker delivery options which would have the book arriving in July or the end of June.
I never appreciated Lulu more!
I’m not saying Create Space is bad or that I wouldn’t recommend it – I’m withholding judgement at least until I get my book – but I will say it has its issues. Then again, doesn’t everything?
Anyone have an opinion on these two platforms? Or know of a different place that does print on demand books? By the way yes, I have thought of doing a digital version but it seemed a bit hypocritical – I like real books. Am I going to release my own novel as digital just because it’s a bit easier/cheaper/will reach more people? If it was digital I wouldn’t read it. Which isn’t to say I never will, just I want to get the physical book sorted first. Besides, if I do it as a print on demand I can keep putting off making it available to the public while I wait for proof copies to arrive!