General Question

Mtl_zack's avatar

How does one become a publisher?

Asked by Mtl_zack (6759points) August 15th, 2008

either starting a company or joining an already established one.

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4 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Traditional publishing involves picking good authors, acquiring the rights to their manuscripts, editing and printing their books, and marketing and selling same. It requires fairly deep pockets, because you are laying out money up front that you are gambling you will get back on the back end. I would not recommend it as an entrepreneur without spending some time at a publishing house learning the ropes.

The biggies are mostly in New York City, but a lot of publishers have branches in major cities. I would contact them regarding job opportunities or look on their web sites.

What specific areas of the business are you interested in?

Mtl_zack's avatar

i was thinking about anything besides the marketing and selling. preferably working with clients (acuiring them, editing, etc…). about money issues, i do have deep pockets and im very good with money (im 18, already have money invested in the stock market, long term GICs and RRSPs (retirement fund—dont ask)). —sorry for bragging

new york is kinda close, so its a possibility. what i really need to know is the university path that i need to take. i heard that business school is recommended, but wouldnt you also need an english lit degree?

marinelife's avatar

If you want to be an editor, it would be helpful. Much of the work of publishing, however, is business-related. Emerson College in Boston has a program that you might take a look at. Here are some certificate programs listed on Bookjobs.

Good luck.

ideabrian's avatar

Becoming a Publisher is like this:

1. Call yourself a publisher.
2. Do the work of publisher (for books, it’s printing)
3. Register with organizations like ISBN (web form)
4. Set up your business license (like any other – both local and state if US)

Isn’t a publisher somebody who just publishes something?
If my sister writes a book (in a MS Word document) – and I tell her I’ll Publish it, it might look like this:

I’m going to put roles in parenthesis – a publisher might hire or contract these roles.
1. Edit the book so that it flows properly (editor)
2. Design a cover including copy, images, isbn numbers, bar codes (designer, copywriter, admin, designer)
3. Flow the text into a book layout (designer)
4. Register the publication with Library of Congress, and other places that list publications (admin)
4. Print the book using the files from steps 2 & 3 (printer / designer)
5. Promote & market the book (public relations, marketer, web designer, copywriter, designer, printer etc.)
6. Account for sales (accounting)
7. Pay Taxes (accounting)
8. Network like crazy so people know you exist (sales person)
9. Make sure this is all happening (CEO)

There’s an excellent, excellent (yes 2) breakdown of the things you need to do. Dan Poynter (parapublishing

He’s done this for many years and his material will give you the confidence to do it all yourself.

So, go for it!

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