As a writer, this is a subject close to my heart. There are a lot of different book printing companies out there to choose from, and the digitalization of reading and recent trend of self-publishing becoming a legitimate form of expression has only added to it.
Self-publishers need to ask themselves a lot of questions before making their choice - is this company legitimate? What size of company should I approach? What genre of book am I publishing (yes this should be a consideration)? What kind of customers are the company affiliated with?
- Is This Company Legitimate?
This is the ultimate question. Due in part to the recent self-publishing boom, a lot of the companies which sprang up to offer publishing services were not legitimate, and serve only to enrich their owners. It can be difficult to tell immediately whether a company is legitimate or not from one meeting, so whenever you are faced with having to work with one, ask yourself this: do you trust them? Do the people around you trust them? Your instincts are generally correct - if they are telling you that a company is bad news, listen to them.
- What Size of Company Should I Approach?
When it comes to online book printing, the size of the company you choose to approach should depend very much on the book you are trying to print. The very biggest book printing companies are normally the ones with contracts to big publishing houses and are equipped to handle large numbers of books, numbering in the thousands. A book which is being self-published is unlikely to have a run which is thousands of books strong, so turn your sights to the smaller companies, which will be happy to print a run of books more suited to your budget.
- What Genre of Book am I Publishing?
This does have an effect on the company which you can use to have your book printed. Many different companies will have restrictions on the types of books they will print - some companies will only handle non-fiction books, for example, while others will only take romance fiction. Others are strictly Christian, while yet others may print books from all religious perspectives. The genre that your book is in will influence the companies which will print it â€“make sure you know the genre of your own book!
- What Kind of Customers are the Company Affiliated With?
As the Romans used to say, caveat emptor! Let the buyer beware! Always make sure that you check the customer reviews of any printing company before you enter into any contract with them. This is your hard-earned work you are turning over to them - make sure they are a company who will handle it with the care it deserves!
More seriously, the customer reviews can tell you a lot about the company you are dealing with. They can give you an idea of the customer service you will receive, as well as the overall quality of the company itself.