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In the midst of the e-book craze, another viable self-publishing option is slowly rising in the ranks. Gone are the days of it being necessary to invest thousands of dollars in inventory to be able to offer a physical book option to your customers. Print-on-demand makes a print book within reach for most authors.
So what exactly is print-on-demand?
Print-on-demand quite literally means that the book is not printed until someone wants to buy it. This means that the printer of your choice has the book cover file and interior content file ready to go, just waiting for someone to purchase. When someone buys the book, they print it and ship it. No inventory for you, no investment of your resources upfront except for the cost of graphics and file preparation.
In my book, Self-Publish: Moving from Idea to Product, we talk about some criteria for considering print-on-demand. Consider these questions:
- Is your target audience likely to appreciate (and purchase) a printed version?
- Is the content of your book lengthy enough to warrant a printed copy?
- Will your book’s content remain relevant over time?
- Do you have the design ability or budget for a full cover design?
- Do you routinely speak on topics related to your book and have opportunities to offer your book for sale at those events?
- Do you want more flexibility in interior styling and layout?
- Does your book contain a significant number of worksheets?
During this series, we’re chatting about everything self-publishing—design, branding, marketing, formats—you name it! Pulling questions from Design by Insight clients, Re:Write Conference attendees, and you, we’ll take a look at what can often be a confusing and potentially overwhelming subject. Have a question you’d like me to answer? Leave it in the comments below!