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Top 7 Questions About Publishing a Book That Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know Here are the top seven questions and answers entrepreneurs need to know about writing and publishing a book.

By Tom Freiling Edited by Chelsea Brown

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Writing and publishing a book can be a great way to increase your influence and broaden your reach. With a book, you can establish yourself as an industry expert and even find new customers who might be searching for your products or services. But if you're going to write and publish a book, it's important to become familiar with the book publishing business and how it works. Otherwise, you might end up wasting time and money.

In this article, discover the top seven questions and answers entrepreneurs and small business owners need to know about writing and publishing a book. As a lifelong book publisher who teaches entrepreneurs and business executives how to DIY their own book, writing and publishing is one of my favorite subjects to consult on. Book publishing is one of the most cost-effective and profitable ways to reach a larger audience of targeted customers while helping you grow your brand awareness faster and more easily. If you want to become a business influencer, consider writing and publishing your own book.

Related: 10 Steps to Self-Publish Your Book Like a Bestseller

1. How do I go about writing my book?

Writing a book can be hard work, and for any novice writer, you might consider hiring some help. Many authors use ghostwriters or editors to help them through the writing process. An experienced, qualified ghostwriter can help take your concepts and ideas and write them with clarity and persuasion. Don't be afraid to use a ghostwriter. You'd be surprised at how many of today's top-selling authors employ ghostwriters to help them write their books.

2. Should I self-publish my book?

The vast majority of books are self-published, and even some of today's most popular books are self-published. So, you don't need to shy away from a DIY approach to publishing your book. Traditional publishing is a slow and tedious process that might delay the publishing of your book by years. But when you self-publish a book, you can literally begin and finish the process in a matter of months instead of years. Like everything else, though, you need to do some due diligence and make sure you're working with experienced self-publishing partners.

3. How much does it cost to publish a book?

This is a frequently asked question, and there's not a simple answer. It depends on the length of your book, the book printer and distributor you use, as well as how you plan to market and publicize your book. You might spend as little as $1,000 or as much as $50,000 or even more. The large, traditional publishers will spend well into six figures. But it's usually not necessary to spend that much. You also want to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of hiring experienced publishing professionals versus doing it all yourself.

Related: How to Write and Get Your Book Published

4. How do I sell my book to Amazon and through other online booksellers?

There are quite a few different ways to sell your book on Amazon and through other online booksellers, including Walmart and Barnes & Noble. The easier way is to find a book distribution company that works closely with online booksellers. This way, you won't need to learn about or understand how the process works. They will handle it all for you, saving you time and some frustration. If you want to maximize your savings, you can also DIY book distribution. Each platform enables authors to upload their finished manuscripts and manage their own distribution. Busy entrepreneurs might find this rather time-consuming, and many opt to work with qualified book distributors.

5. How do I design my book cover?

Your book cover design is important. Readers judge a book and the author based largely on the design of the book cover. You want a design that's not only attractive but also simple and relevant to the subject matter. Readers make book purchases based on emotion and impulse, so if you can't capture their attention instantly with positive vibes, you might have a hard time selling your book. There are many great book cover designers to choose from, and when you look for one, it's important to find a designer who has book publishing experience. Not every designer understands the nuances of good book cover design.

6. How many words and pages should I include in my book?

There's no correct or incorrect answer to this frequently asked question. However, it's probably not a good idea to overwhelm your reader with too many words. You want to say what you need to say succinctly and efficiently and not bore the reader with excessive details. While the word count in most of today's books ranges from 20,000 to even 100,000 words, the average non-fiction book today contains about 50,000 words. That being said, many of today's top sellers contain less than 35,000 words. The important thing is to use your words wisely, and don't waste the reader's time with too many words.

Related: 5 Strategies to Writing a Book That Will Build Authority

7. What is a hybrid book publisher?

When shopping for publishers who can help you write, publish and sell your book, you will probably run across the phrase, "hybrid publisher." A hybrid book publisher is a cross between a traditional publisher and a self-publisher. Hybrid publishers are typically more experienced and specialized than self-publishers. They perform similarly to traditional publishers, although the author still invests his or her own funds into the project. The benefit of using a hybrid publisher is experience. It may cost you more money, but in the end, you'll likely end up with a more sellable book. Hybrid publishers also specialize in certain genres, including business books, self-help books and leadership books.

Remember that writing and publishing a book is a lot like starting your own business. It may take you a while to find readers and gain an audience, but with diligence and patience, you'll eventually find a way to become an industry expert and influencer in your field.

Tom Freiling

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® Contributor

CEO and Publisher, Freiling Agency

Tom Freiling is a publishing industry veteran, pioneer in digital book publishing, founder of NASDAQ digital publisher and professional ghostwriter for top-tier business authors. He's represented & collaborated with NYT best-selling authors and published by HarperCollins.

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