books spread out

What is self-publishing?

Self-publishing is when an author publishes their book independently – without the backing of a traditional publishing house – and covers all of the related costs themselves or with the help of funding.

What is traditional publishing?

In the traditional model, publishing houses consider submissions of manuscripts or book proposals from authors. They decide if they are going to invest in a book, by carrying the publishing costs, depending on whether the estimated returns on the sales of the book outweigh the costs of producing it. Also factoring into their decision would be their lists (the type of books they usually publish), their publishing strategy, their capacity to take on new projects at the time and the market conditions anticipated to impact sales of the book.

If publishing houses have rejected my manuscript, should I still self-publish it?

Established publishing houses’ selections reflect their particular interests and concerns, so they may close the door on books in spite of them having an audience which you can clearly see. So, a rejection from a publisher does not necessarily mean that your book is without merit or a readership.

What are the benefits of self-publishing?

You – the author – retain all of your rights. You control every aspect of the book, and can make all of the decisions about the content and creative elements. Any revenue from any sales made directly to your readership is entirely yours to keep (no royalties are involved).

Why do I need Staging Post’s services, if I’m publishing the book myself?

Without any knowledge of the publishing process, you may not know where to start or what process to follow, and you won’t be able to access expert advice easily. You likely won’t have existing connections to book publishing professionals like editors, printers and designers or be in a position to negotiate preferential industry rates. Many self-published books end up being of a poor quality for those reason. All of this affects their ability to sell, obviously. Self-publishing with Staging Post allows you to use all of Jacana Media’s resources to publish your book whilst also having us around to guide you through the entire process.

How much money will I need to publish my book?

Please visit the COSTS page to get an idea of pricing. Or, for a quotation specific to your needs and book specifications, contact us.

What if I don’t have the money?

If you are short on funds, we may be able to connect you with the services of a creative to assist you with a crowdfunding campaign. Alternatively, you can also create and manage such a campaign on your own – we can point you in the right direction.

Will you market my book to the public?

We don’t offer any book marketing or publicity services, but can refer you on to freelancers who are involved on the marketing front. On an added note, know that you are best positioned to reach potential readers and buyers through your own existing networks, contacts, and knowledge of the topics and contents of your book. Staging Post authors also receive a marketing guide to assist with the planning of their strategy and campaign.

Can you sell my book, and get it into stores?

Any direct selling you’re planning to do, you will need to plan for and manage. If you would like to have your book distributed to book stores around South Africa, we can put you in touch with a distributor who will decide whether they can make a success of selling your book via traditional channels.

My book isn’t finished yet; can you help me with writing and structuring it? Can you illustrate the book for me?

Your manuscript will need to be as refined as possible before we begin the publishing process. We don’t offer writing tips, illustration work, nor any form of rewriting, restructuring or reworking of the book (i.e. substantive or developmental editing). We can, however, refer you to freelance illustrators, developmental editors or writing schools/coaches, should you need assistance before partnering with Staging Post.

How long will the publishing process take?

The entire process takes 6–8 weeks minimum. As the Staging Post services are provided by Jacana Media, a very busy little publishing house, your project will be slotted into an existing publishing schedule. We will draw up an anticipated timeline for you should you choose to work with us.

How many books must I print?

You need not print your book if you don’t want to – we can create an e-book only if that’s your wish. If you do choose to print, there is a minimum print run of 50 copies.

Will I be supplied with an ISBN and barcode?

Yes – that service is included free of charge.

I only need my book edited – can you still help?

Yes! We will tailor-make a service offering specific to your requirements. If you only need an edit or cover design or printing services, we can simply exclude the rest.