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What is Hybrid Publishing?


Per Wikipedia ...


A hybrid press or hybrid publisher is a publishing house that operates with a different revenue model than traditional publishing, while keeping the rest of the practices of publishing the same. The revenue source of a traditional publisher is through the sale of books (and other related materials) that they publish, while the revenue of hybrid publishers comes from both book sales and fees charged for the execution of their publishing services. The Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA) has laid out criteria that publishers must meet to be called hybrid publishers (see below).

The traditional publishing model assumes no financial risk for the author. The publisher pays an advance to publish their work, then proceeds to prepare that work for publishing. The publisher pays for all the editorial including the authors advance, production, marketing, sales, distribution, and wholesale costs and does not begin to recoup their investment in the book until the book is on the market and begins to sell.


The hybrid publisher follows this same model except the author is the one to assume the financial risk for their book. Rather than paying an author an advance, the hybrid publisher charges the author a fee for their publishing services. The author stills receives royalties on their book sales, as with the traditional method, but they must pay the fee for publishers services to get their book to market. Another qualification of the hybrid model is that the royalties for authors who elect to publish with the hybrid method should be higher than with the traditional publishing standard.

As hybrid publishing has become more popular over the years, the definition has become more clear, especially with the standards put forward by the IBPA for hybrid publishers to follow:

  • Define a mission and vision for its publishing program.

  • Vet submissions.

  • Commit to truth and transparency in business practices.

  • Provide a negotiable, easy-to-understand contract for each book published.

  • Publish under its own imprint(s) and ISBNs.

  • Publish to industry standards.

  • Ensure editorial, design, and production quality.

  • Pursue and manage a range of publishing rights.

  • Provide distribution services.

  • Demonstrate respectable sales.

  • Pay authors a higher-than-standard royalty.

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