A ‘Lit’ On The Side! Starting A Publishing Business

This is a collaborative post.

If you truly want to embrace culture and literature, some might say you can’t do better than by going to Paris, where all of the ghosts of existentialism, culture, and the sheer inspiration that echoes out of the walls can force you to plough your own path in literature. Or perhaps you’re able to draw inspiration from other cities, countries and artists. If you’ve been itching to explore your options in creative writing, there are lots of avenues to venture down.

Maybe, like me, you’ve thought about writing your own novel, or maybe you’ve thought about starting your own publishing company.

Now, with the Kindle, and people reading online, the classic image of a well-thumbed book appears to be disappearing faster than Heathcliff into the moors. But, if you still want to present your passion for literature, and you are inspired, what are the things you really need to know? Here are some of the things you’ll need to consider if you do want to look into starting a publishing business.

The boring stuff

Starting a publishing company means you have to know how to set up a business. This means you’ve got to know about things like intellectual property and how to sort your taxes out, but also you’ll need to spend time learning what sort of business you need to register as, such as a sole proprietorship or an LLC (limited liability company). There are arguments for both, but an LLC is usually one of the best options for those who want to start publishing.

Running a business is no walk in the park, believe me. You need to be aware of all of your responsibilities as a business owner and educate yourself on things like accounting, marketing and ethical practices. These are all core components of a successful business and it’s vital to take time to learn about them before launching into any new venture.

That said, it isn’t impossible – far from it!

Finding the right literature for you

What are the things you are passionate about? In the publishing business, it’s not about finding the right book that sells, although this may influence your decision. You have got to find the books that you are passionate about and also find those writers out there who are unpublished and demand to be heard.

One book is potentially a lifetime’s work for the writer, and if you have a burning desire to see their work published, this is what will keep you going during the more difficult times. You may find that you’ll have to supplement your own income by doing another job while you work on this aspect of setting up the business, but if you believe in the products, you will do everything in your power to ensure it gets seen.

starting a publishing business

It’s never an overnight sensation

Remember to try and keep things in perspective though. Starting up a publishing business is seldom something that happens overnight. On The Road was considered an “overnight sensation,” but it took Jack Kerouac 9 years to write.

The same thing applies when you are getting everything up and running. You may end up sitting around your office, floor to ceiling with manuscripts, and unread emails asking you what you thought of their book, not to mention the piles of notepads and printer ink cartridges you need to print out the document because the writer is very, very penniless.

All of these moments of difficulty can prove to be overwhelming, and more than likely, they may put you off doing it after a while. But it’s always about putting yourself into it for the long haul. Persevere and keep at it, even during the rough spots, and success will come your way. If you have a passion for a specific type of literature, this is what will keep you going.

Remember, you may very well be the one to find someone who is an unpolished diamond in the rough, or you might be able to carve a niche for yourself publishing new and creative kinds of children’s literature. Whatever your goals for your publishing business, always keep in mind that it won’t always be smooth sailing, and there are going to be times when things definitely won’t go according to plan.

So, will you be starting a publishing business?

A publishing company is a fantastic idea in theory, and if you are lucky enough to be out there living amongst artists and bohemians, it’s an incredibly inspiring idea to push in this direction. But you also have to have your feet firmly on the ground.

Build a network of contacts in the publishing industry, and get involved with them on social media. Making sure you do your research into the key aspects of setting up this kind of business is crucial, but in the end, the rewards could be fantastic.

What do you think about the idea of setting up your own publishing business? Is it something you’ve ever considered? Or, if you have any experience in this field then let me know in the comments and share your wisdom!

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