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Hybrid Publishing Costs – Where is Your Money Being Spent?

Updated: Dec 5, 2023

As discussed many times in previous blogs (Hybrid vs Vanity Press & What is Hybrid Publishing?) one of the key things that separates the hybrid publishers from the vanity press out there are a company’s morals! A good hybrid publisher will care about you and your book and will happily be transparent about their whole process – including where your money is spent.

Two men shaking hands on a pair of giant hands
Where is your money being spent?

With this in mind, let’s look at where your money is spent when you invest your money into the safe hands of a true hybrid publisher.

What are the key services involved in book publishing?

  • Manuscript editing

-Developmental editing


  • Book cover design

  • Manuscript formatting

  • Proofreading

  • Online platform upload (i.e Amazon, Lightning Source etc)

These are the key features of publishing that shouldn’t differ whether you are publishing traditionally, via a hybrid publisher or are taking the route to self-publish. They are all super important in their own right.

After these basic aspects, which most hybrid publishers will include in their standard packages, there are then further services that hybrid publishers may also offer:

  • Manuscript review & report/ beta reading service

  • Book distribution

  • Book launch strategy/ book marketing

  • PR

Hybrid publisher costs - how are they split between services?

For the sake of this blog, I will use our rough pricing structure to show exactly where your money is spent when publishing with us. It varies slightly book to book due to word count and complexity of the different aspects. It may surprise you to see a business being this upfront about their expenditures – but we have nothing to hide.

table to show hybrid publisher costs
Example Breakdown of Hybrid Publisher Costs

These prices are all average as each expert freelancer we use has their own rate.

Hybrid publishers often come into the firing line regarding cutting costs and using amateur service providers they have found on Fiver or Upwork in order to provide a bigger return.

For us, cutting corners is not an option.

We only want the best freelancers working for us in order to produce the best finished product as possible for our authors.

We are lucky enough for our freelancers to offer their services to us at a discounted rate in order to work with Raven Crest Books. This makes it possible for us to put together reasonably priced packages while maintaining high levels of experience and professionalism within our team.

I digress! Back to costs...

Just to note: for Raven Crest Books, the "technical stuff" is all done in house so price will depend on how many hours it takes.

For those more visual readers, here’s a super transparent pie chart of where your money will go when you invest in your book with us:

Pie Chart to Show Hybrid Publishing Costs
Pie Chart to Show Hybrid Publishing Costs

For those eagle-eyed mathematicians amongst you, you may notice that there is a reasonable chunk of pie allocated to the Service Mark-Up.

Yes, we are a business and a service provider – and just like every business, we have to make a profit to survive in this big amazing world. This mark-up pays for our labour time, our expertise, any ongoing training we are involved with to continuously improve our services, publishing memberships and industry contacts.

A large part of our profit is also put back into the business to continue growing and progressing our company to provide more and more benefits to our customers.

(And we also have three hungry little growing boy mouths to feed at home!)

This seems like a good time to mention royalties. If you are paying an upfront fee, you'll want to make sure your publisher is not taking too much of your royalties; after all you've already invested.

However, I would say if the publisher is taking zero percent of the royalties, (whilst that may sound great to you) they then potentially have no motive to help you with ongoing sales - apart from their reputation being at risk and it being a bit of a d*ck move!

We offer two royalty options to our clients. Clients can choose how much royalties we take:

The 10% option

  • This is purely a hosting fee. We host our author's books under our own accounts on various publishing platforms.

The 25% option

  • Hosting fee plus continued marketing efforts & promotions from Raven Crest Books. This includes Amazon ads, social media marketing, Amazon daily deal nominations etc

Our Company Values

The important thing for us as a family run publisher, and for many other hybrid publishers out there, is to:

  • Treat you as a human, not a number (or a bank)

  • Care about your book; the contents, the finished product and the outcome

  • Build strong relationships between ourselves and our authors

  • Raise awareness for health & wellness topics all over the world

  • Share your stories, share your knowledge, help the world!

So, when looking for a publisher where you pay a service charge upfront, I would urge you to ask the publisher exactly where your money is spent. If they can’t or won’t tell you what they will do with your investment, I would look elsewhere.

Feel free to keep the tables in mind as a rough guide when questioning a company, so if they tell you it’ll cost them £1000 of your money to format your book, I would certainly raise a querying eyebrow.

What are the benefits of paying a hybrid publisher to publish my book for me?

  • We already know how to publish books – it’s literally our job!

  • Expert freelancers at discounted rates

  • All the services you require in one place, all tied into one neat, professional, fully vetted package

  • Less stress for you trying to research and learn exactly how to publish a book

  • Less time spent researching and learning exactly how to publish a book (and time is money!)

  • Industry contacts in our health & wellness niche

  • It’s money you would likely have spent anyway if self-publishing to a high standard

  • You will have a team behind you, to guide you every step of the way. Goodbye lonely writing and publishing!

I hope we have given you a bit of an insight into where your money is spent when using a hybrid publisher.

And I hope this also helps you escape the clutches of the dastardly vanity press.

Hybrid publishing is not for everyone and we know that. But for the people it IS for, we can’t wait to meet you and welcome you into our family of authors!

If you would rather hire us for assisted self-publishing, check out our Self Publishing Support service here or our Pick'n'mix Services here!


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