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  1. #26
    Mildly Disturbing Filigree's Avatar
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    (Mods, move if needed.) Someone else can tell you better than I can, probably. As I understand it, 'traditional' is generally a denigrating weasel-word attached to commercial publishing by some of its opponents (often strident self-published authors or vanity publishers.)

    Commercial publishing is any venture where the author furnishes a manuscript and is paid in some combo of advances/royalties. The publisher does not charge the author, and takes its profits out of sales. While some authors may do various levels of promotion, they are not generally expected to do all of it. Small-press publishers can blur this line by making their authors do more promo and sales work. It's up to authors to decide how much extra work they're willing to do. Always a good idea to ask such publishers what they're doing to earn their cut of sales income...before believing hype and signing contracts!

    Self-publishing requires the author to do or subcontract all the work a commercial publisher would offer: various levels of editing, formatting, book design, cover design, pricing, printing for physical copies, distribution, marketing and promotion, and working with sales portals. Some parts of the equation can be free, some may require substantial investment by the author. Again, research.

    'Hybrid' is a dangerous term for new/inexperienced authors. When used by some vanity publishers, 'hybrid' seems to mean a publisher who 'offers' both commercial (advance and/or royalty paid to author) publishing *and* subsidy publication where the author contributes all or some of the publishing costs. Subsidy publishers hate being called vanity publishers, but that's what they are. They make most of their profit from selling goods and services to their authors; any income from actual book sales to readers is just extra profit.

    To the rest of us, 'hybrid' simply means an split earnings potential where an author can have some books commercially published, and some that they've self-published on their own.

    A good recent example is the case of Ellora's Cave, an exotic romance publisher currently involved in a libel lawsuit with a critic, as well as numerous author disagreements. Many authors have bought back or forced the return of their rights to publish their EC books, and now plan on re-releasing those novels as self-published works. Many of those authors also work with other commercial romance publishers, making them 'hybrid' authors.
    Last edited by Filigree; 08-30-2015 at 03:22 PM.
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