Independent Publishing and Hybrid Publishing? What Is the Difference?

Updated: Aug 18

The publishing industry is rapidly changing from year to year. Not too long ago, the only channel through which an author could be published was by a traditional publishing house. Today, there are several ways to publish a book - self-publishing, traditional publishing, independent publishing, or hybrid publishing. This post is going to focus on the difference between self-publishing and hybrid publishing.

Self-Publishing - just as the name implies, is when an author takes on publishing their book themselves. When an author chooses to publish themselves, they take on all responsibilities from writing through to publishing. This includes finding an editor to edit their book, a proofreader to help with formatting, a book cover designer, a book marketing service, and a publishing platform to finally get their book into the hands of readers. The burden of self-publishing is lightened if an author chooses to use a self-publishing company. Reputable self-publishing or independent publishing houses provide a range of services from editing to jacket design to distribution, and the author has full control over each stage of production from how the book should look and how it should be promoted. Of course, this also means that the author must take on all costs associated with getting the book through each stage.


There are various services an author can use to self-publish their book, but the most common ones are Kindle Direct Publishing and CreateSpace. CreateSpace is best for those looking to eventually get their books into brick and mortar stores.


Hybrid Publishing - is a combination of traditional publishing and self-publishing. Hybrid publishers generally offer authors some in-house expertise (editing, marketing, book design, etc.) and distribution support. Most hybrid publishers engage in profit-sharing with their authors and provide authors with some publicity and exposure.


Whether an author is looking to self-publish or use a hybrid publisher, they must be aware and prepared to pay for all costs associated with getting their book published and marketed. Keep in mind that there is no wrong or right way to publish your book. In the end, the success of your book is going to be ultimately determined by how well-written it is, and how well you're able to market it to the right audience.

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