Thoughts on publishing, self-publishing and books in general

One frequent question that authors ask us concerns the cost of self-publishing. It is a fair question given that the authors foot the bill themselves and that many self-publishing companies advertise packages that indeed cost a lot. We have illustrated two books below that might give you a fair idea of what are the costs involved. These examples are based on actual books we have published:

For my earlier post on the costs of self-publishing, click here.

The first example is that of a manuscript that had a length of 22 pages when submitted.

A round of substantive editing was recommended for the text. The cost of editing, therefore, was 22 x 125 = Rs. 2750/-

The cover design cost Rs. 5000/-. Hence total cost thus far = Rs. 7750/-

The author wished to have book dimensions of 5 x 8. For these dimensions, a book length of 62 pages was estimated.

Hence, typesetting charges = 62 x 25 = Rs. 1,550/-

Total costs thus far = Rs. 9300/-

Of these 62 pages, 12 were in colour.

The cost of printing was calculated as:

Cost of b/w pages = 50 x 0.65 = Rs. 32.50

Cost of col. pages = 12 x 6.25 = Rs. 75/-

Cost of cover (coloured cover, lamination and soft cover binding) = Rs. 65/-

Thus, total cost for 1 copy = Rs. 172.50

For an additional 5 library copies, which must be compulsorily submitted, the cost will be = 172.50 x 5 = 862.50

For 6 copies (5 for libraries and 1 for the author), the cost of printing = Rs. 1035/-

Hence the total costs incurred leading to the first copy = Rs. 10,335/-. Additional costs will depend on the number of copies the author wishes to print.

In another instance, let us take the example of of a manuscript that was of length 172 pages when submitted.

A round of copy editing was recommended for the text. The cost of editing, therefore, was 172 x 85 = Rs. 14620/-

The cover design cost Rs. 5000/-. Hence total cost thus far = Rs. 19620/-

The author wished to have book dimensions of 6 x 9″. For these dimensions, considering that the book had images, a book length of 234 pages was estimated.

Hence, typesetting charges (for books with images) = 234 x 35 = Rs. 8190/-

Total costs thus far = Rs. 27810/-

The cost of printing was calculated as:

Cost of b/w pages = 234 x 0.80 = Rs. 187.20

Cost of cover (coloured cover, lamination and soft cover binding) = Rs. 75/-

Thus, total cost for 1 copy = Rs. 262.20

For an additional 5 library copies, which must be compulsorily submitted, the cost will be = 262.20 x 5 = 1311/-

For 6 copies (5 for libraries and 1 for the author), the cost of printing = Rs. 1573.20

Hence the total costs incurred leading to the first copy = Rs. 29383.20. Additional costs will depend on the number of copies the author wishes to print.