Have some reasonable estimates of your upfront costs. Here’s my bare-bones estimates for taking control of the publishing maze yourself:
Layout and Cover Design: $1,500 – $3,500. The range will evolve around the use of illustrations and artwork on the interior; the length of the book; and the extent of the corrections.
Editing: $1000 and up. It depends on what type of editing and how many rounds. Your best friend and Mom aren’t included. Most editors can’t do quality work much more than five hours a day. If you need heavy duty content and developmental editing—meaning you need surgery on your work, you could easily add several thousand dollars—this is different from “ghosting” where the book is written by someone else with your material you’ve turned over … and is done in your name—that will add $10,000 plus, plus, plus to the amount.
Printing: $500 and up, depending on the number of copies. Are you doing POD or offset? How many copies? Even if I was doing POD, I would order a minimum of 200 copies so that I had them on hand to sell directly; have some for marketing and promo purposes.
Marketing and Publicity: $1,000 and up. What are you planning—do you need to hire social media help? Are you planning on entering book awards? How about reviews? Are you planning on pitching to media? Are you planning on give books away for promo purposes? Are you planning on giving books away for “seeding” purposes? What are you planning? The best is to ID areas that you want to probe into, than start tying in costs/budget to each.