Author Costs – How Much?

It’s true – you can become a published author at no financial cost to you. Will it be the best-looking book out there? Probably not – unless you happen to be a professional editor and graphic designer!

So, for most authors, what are the costs you should expect?

Before we get into that, let’s do a quick mindset shift. “Cost” can be an ugly word. It conjures up thoughts of just throwing money away to never be seen again. If you make one small change, and substitute “Investment” for “cost”, your mindset will be in a much better place.

Now that we’ve taken a moment and started thinking “investment” we can touch on the three different investments you will make in becoming a published author.

  1. Emotional Investment
  2. Time Investment
  3. Monetary Investment

Let’s face it- becoming a published author isn’t the easiest thing in the world. If it were, everyone would do it! There’s the emotion of writing and going through that process. There’s emotion in making the decision to share your thoughts with the world and subjecting yourself to the opinions of people you may never know or even meet. There’s the emotion of putting your precious manuscript in the hands of others as they help you along the path to publishing. Prepare yourself for this investment! Know there will be bumps and bruises along the way. People are helping you and people make mistakes. Just trust that in the end, your book is going to be released at the very best time and will be the very best version of itself! Also, remind yourself that in the Book Land, there are these rescues called “Editions”. Not thrilled with how your book looks after it’s been released for a bit? Fix it up and release a Second Edition! Nothing is final.

Time. So much time. There’s all the time to write the book. Time to edit and format the book. Time to have a book cover created. Time to run your book launch and time to publish. These time frames will vary based on each author as well as each person helping you during the individual phases of your book. Save yourself some headache and always ask how long it will take to have a step of your book completed. Also, get that front cover done as early in the process as possible! You’ll want that for marketing. It doesn’t have to be the final design – but have something that you are proud of that you will want to share with the world when talking about your book.

And…Money. The monetary investment into your book will be so individualized that there’s no way I can tell you exactly what to expect here. What I can share are the most common expenses authors incur along the way.

  • Coaching
  • Editing
  • Formatting
  • Cover Design
  • Publishing
  • Marketing
  • Books

Again, you can do it all with zero monetary investment. It can be done! I’ve done it. But those stock covers don’t look great. You can see what I mean by just looking at my book “Brainstorming to Book Sales”. I wrote this little book just to see how easy it would be to go through the process with zero monetary investment. Sure, there’s some decent content. But look at the book – is it something you would want to purchase by just looking at it? Agree or not – we all judge a book by its cover.

So, what do you do if you have limited funds but want to become a published author? The areas I recommend investing the most money is in editing/formatting and cover design. If you have a limited budget, put it into these areas. You’ll thank yourself later!

You’re probably asking, “What’s the bottom line?” I can’t tell you exactly, because there are so many variables. What I can tell you, is that getting a book from Brainstorming to Book Sales should require a total investment of $0 to around $3,000, depending on YOUR choices and what help you are needing. If you want someone to do something for you, there will be a monetary investment.

I do offer all of the services above – both as a package, as well as a la carte. If you find yourself in need of services, or just want to get an idea of the monetary investment, email me at: and I will be happy to have that conversation with you!