At the Chicago VMUG User Conference two months ago, I happened to tweet something during Nick Marshall’s morning keynote that was inferred as volunteering to write a book.
Oh yeah, here’s the tweet:
There needs to be a “Mastering Horizon Suite” book in the same vein as @scott_lowe and @nickmarshall9 “Mastering vSphere 5.5” book.
— Sean Massey (@seanpmassey) September 17, 2014
Although that project did not pass the spouse acceptance test, and other priorities prevent me from committing the time to take on a project of that magnitude, I have been thinking about smaller writing projects. One of the questions that I’ve been trying to work through is do I pitch ideas to various tech book publishers, or do I publish the book myself using self-publishing options from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other companies?
There are benefits and drawbacks to each option. Publishers have resources for editing, reviewing, and marketing books, but the schedules can be very tight to fit the deadlines. Self-publishing provides more freedom to write on your own schedule, but the author is responsible for finding their own editor.
There is a financial component to this model as well. A publisher may provide an advance, but it may be a while before you see any royalties, and that is only if the book makes a profit. Self-publishing provides no money up front, but you get to keep everything you make from the sale of the book.
These aren’t the only items that need to be considered when choosing whether to work with a publisher or self-publish. There are a lot of factors that need to be taken into consideration.
What are your thoughts? Please share on Twitter by tweeting me at @seanpmassey.
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