Vetting hybrid publishing

Vetting hybrid publishing

hybridArdain Isma

As promised, I have retrieved this info on how best you can vet a hybrid publisher because according an article on the very popular blog Reedsy Blog, new authors should not venture blindly into the increasingly popular hybrid trend. Do your homework.

Below is what you need to know.

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What should you look for in a hybrid publisher?

In 2018, the Independent Book Publishers Association published their criteria for defining a reputable hybrid publisher — a set of standards any author can use to vet the companies on their shortlist. According to the IBPA’s criteria, a hybrid publisher must:

Define a mission and vision for its publishing program. Translation: their selection criteria has to have some rhyme or reason beyond just “the author was willing to pay us.”

Vet submissions. Translation: same as above — they can’t just be willing to publish anything that lands on their desk.

Publish under its own imprint(s) and ISBNs. Translation: they can’t hide their back catalog from future authors.

Publish to industry standards. Translation: if their books are missing copyright pages and the layouts are unlike any book you’ve ever read… then you’re not dealing with a good hybrid.

Ensure editorial, design, and production quality. Translation: no cutting corners on editorial or design work. If their books have awful covers and typo-ridden copy, then beware!

Pursue and manage a range of publishing rights. Translation: they should have a vested interest in the success of your book — not just publish it and forget it.

Provide distribution services. Translation: they can’t just make your book available for bookshops to buy (any self-publishing author can do that). They need to actively work to place your book with retailers.

Demonstrate respectable sales. Translation: if they’ve never managed to sell anyone else’s book, what makes you think yours will be any different?

Pay authors a higher-than-standard royalty. Translation: if you, the author, are going to invest in the publication of your book, you better get a bigger cut of the proceeds than a traditionally published author would.

If you have determined that you’re dealing with a reputable company, the next thing to consider is whether a hybrid publisher is indeed your best option.

Note: Ardain Isma is a novelist and editing manager at CSMS Magazine . He heads the Center for Strategic and Multicultural Studies. He also teaches Introduction to Research Methods at Embry Riddle University. To see his books, click here.

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