10 Self-publishing companies for your next textbook project

Self-publishing, not to be confused with"If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door." vanity publishing, is now seen as a much more viable option when it comes to publishing a textbook. Self-publishing companies offer a wide range of services from manuscript editing to cover design and distribution. You, as the author, often have complete control over each stage of the design, publishing, and promotion process. Keeping all of this in mind, if you decide to self-publish instead of following the traditional route, these ten self-publishing companies are ones to explore and consider:

  1. Lulu.com
    One of the benefits of self-publishing is that you can pick and choose how much or how little assistance you want in creating your final product. This ability makes Lulu.com a worthy choice. Not only do they offer three different all-inclusive packages, but also various services from which you can choose that may be a better fit for you and your project.
  2. CreateSpace
    CreateSpace is an Amazon Company. One interesting aspect of the CreateSpace product is the ability to share a “preview” of your book with friends, family, colleagues, and even the CreateSpace community before you complete and launch your book. You will also be able to connect with other authors within that community to gain advice and insight into the publishing and promotion of your book.
  3. Smashwords
    If you are looking for a low cost, minimalist solution for self-publishing your book, Smashwords may be it. They provide free tools on how to market and distribute your book, but do not actually do those things for you. If you publish with them you will earn royalties of 60% list at major retailers, and up to 80% list at the Smashwords Store.
  4. iUniverse
    iUniverse offers various packages to meet your authoring goals. What is unique about iUniverse is their special recognition programs. According to their website, “many recognized authors have found greater retail success or even traditional publishing offers” thanks to these programs.
  5. RedShelf
    For an ebook and digital course material option, RedShelf may be your answer. They provide these services specifically for educational materials. Their goal is to, “create new efficiencies for digital content discovery, distribution, and consumption in the learning community” and “improve the online learning experience and accelerate the transition to digital in ways that support publishers, institutions, bookstores, faculty, and most importantly students.”
  6. Archway Publishing
    Possibly the most expensive option on this list, however, you are able to pick from various packages to find the best fit for your needs. Archway Publishing also offers extensive author support services including (in high level packages) an author profile video and a social media publicist.
  7. Wordclay
    There are basic packages to pick from plus added services for editing, design, and marketing. You can publish in e-book format or use their print-on-demand technology. Wordclay will ensure that your print book is accessible to thousands of retailers around the globe and that your e-book is distributed to prominent e-book stores like Amazon’s Kindle Store, Apple’s iBooks Store, and Barnes & Noble’s NOOK Book Store.
  8. IngramSpark
    E-book and print-on-demand options are available with setup complete for only $49. According to their website, IngramSpark “connects your book to every single major e-book retailer in the world”. If you decide to use the print-on-demand service, they will print books as they are ordered and ship them directly to that customer.
  9. IBJ Book Publishing
    IBJ Book Publishing prides themselves on customer service and quality. Unlike some other self-publishing companies on this list, IBJ Book Publishing uses a more basic model in which the author is heavily responsible for their own marketing and distribution (although they do offer a marketing resource at additional cost if an author chooses).
  10. Draft2Digital
    Although there are no fees to uploading and selling your ebook with Draft2Digital and you receive 90% of the royalties, they also don’t offer any authoring services like editing or cover art. However, if you are looking for a simple, straightforward process that still offers some benefits, this may be your solution.

Looking for more self-publishing tips and resources? Check out these TAA blog posts and presentations on demand: