Book Publishing in small quantities or on demand lulu.com



This may be the first in a series of several profiles looking at different ways to get published online. The internet has been a disruptive technology for so many industries. Book publishing is one of those. Used to you would submit a manuscript to publishers shopping around for someone to take your work. These days it can be as simple as going online and shopping between several publishers, uploading your book (or calendar, pictures or other content) and then letting them take care of the publishing details, selling, printing on demand and you haven’t had to deal with a rejection letter yet….


I’ve featured this site on the genealogy site, because many genealogists are interested in publishing their research for relatives benefit. This is an excellent tool for that application, or any other relatively small scale book distribution. The site I’m talking about is lulu.com. They bill themselves as Self Publishing – Free and on the main page the banner proclaims that you can publish and sell worldwide.

Lulu, doesn’t have any setup fees or minimum orders. Through them you can self publish your own creations be they book, CD, DVD, image or calendar. You can make your books available through download or hard copy. *(So customers can order it in book form). You can set the royalty that you get. There is a price of 2 cents per page, plus fixed costs of binding and lulu takes a 20% commission on profit. For download media of course, there are no fixed costs, just royalty+lulu’s commision. You can make things available for free download.

If you know what price you want to charge, they will figure out the royalty rates to make it that price. For $34.95 you can get an ISBN number for your book which then makes it available for order from any bookstore. (They also give a 1 year placement in Amazon Marketplace for this fee.) If you want to sell books through traditional bookstores or online bookstores, you need to get an ISBN number… But if the book is just for you, friends and family that’s not necessary, they can buy through the lulu.com site.

Of course, as I noted you can distribute more than books through lulu (pictures, calendars, music, etc.) This is one site that gives me lots of ideas of things I could be doing…. I suspect before too long I’m going to have an account at lulu.com if only for small stuff.

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