Give life to your manuscript
A single contact point for a range of professional services
BK Publishing is a vibrant publishing house in the heart of Pretoria. With over 10 years of experience in the publishing industry and a collection of wonderful, original publications to our name, we are now offering indie publishing services under the imprint Preflight Books.
Preflight Books is perfectly positioned to provide established publishers, aspiring authors and self-publishers the services they need to bring their manuscripts to life.
Self-publishing is the perfect option when you want to publish your book, but stay in control of the whole process. You decide what you want to publish and how you want it to look.
When self-publishing, you as the author are responsible for the costs of production and printing, as well as the marketing and distribution of your book. This means the printed books, copyright, all subsidiary rights, and all money received from sales belong to you.
We are a single contact point for a range of professional services for self-publishing authors. We can:
Advise you on every aspect
of the publishing cycle
Write a blurb, edit,
and proofread your book
Design a cover
for your book
Manage the printing
of your book
Create marketing material (bookmarks, posters, banners)
Every project is unique. We tailor a quotation around what you need to publish your book. To find out how much it will cost, please answer the questions below and send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
When asking for a quotation, please answer the following questions so that we can produce an accurate costing:
1. What is the title of your work?
2. What type of book is it? (Genre)
3. How many pages do you have in Microsoft Word?
4. What is the total word count of your Word document?
5. Do you require editing and/or proofreading?
6. Do you require a blurb to be written for the back cover?
7. Do you require a cover design?
8. Do you require illustrations? If so, in full colour, or in black and white?
9. Do you want your book to have a hard cover or a soft cover?
10. What size book would you like to print? (A6/A5, landscape/portrait)
11. On which kind of paper would you like to print? (Glossy or matte)
12. How many copies would you like to print?
13. Do you want an e-book?
14. Do you have any special requests? (Transcription, translation etc.)
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1. Why should I self-publish my book?
Not all books fit the publishing lists of traditional publishers. Some books have very specific niche audiences or have applications outside of the trade or educaction market. If you want only 5 copies of your memoir or you want to create your own poetry anthology, or even if you want to test the waters for you novel, etc., self-publishing is your best option.
2. What is the difference between self-publishing and trade publishing?
Traditional publishing houses select books that fit their publishing lists. Their lists are collections of books which have similar genres or themes. They take on all the financial risks and do most of the work, but also keeps most of the profits.
Preflight Books provides publishing services for self-publishers. This means that we deliver a service for a fee. There are no strings attached and no author contracts. In self-publishing, the author keeps all of the profits, but is also entirely responsible for the book, the printing costs, as well as marketing and distribution.
Both forms of publishing have their benefits, but self-publishing is a good starting point for first time authors and a viable option for experienced, entrepreneurial authors who know what they want.
3. Will I be able to make profit from book sales?
If profit is your motivation, yes. In relation to the potential profits, self-publishing requires only a small investment in order to get going. However, you as the author are entirely responsible for sales and you get out what you put in. As a benefit, the publishing services are once-off, which means that once the book has been developed, you can print countless copies or reprints of the same book which reduces the unit costs.
4. Which is better: print or digital?
It’s important to know who your readers are and how you will reach them. Digital has the benefit of being available across borders to readers around the world. Some books lend themselves to print only. Children's books, in our experience work better in print, and in general, we have found that South African readers prefer print media over digital. But, both forms have their benefits and you can, of course, go for both.
5. How many books should I print?
It depends on the aim of your manuscript. You can publish anything from 6 copies up (the National Library of South Africa requires 5 free copies to be submitted for Legal Deposit in exchange for an ISBN, so if you want one copy, you'll need to print 6). If you want to sell your book to a large audience, you can start with 100 copies to test the waters. If you sell out, you can always ask for a reprint. Keep in mind that the more copies you publish, the cheaper the printing costs will be per book. We don't recommend printing over 500 copies for an initial print-run.
6. Do I have to get my book printed?
You don’t have to print your book. You can choose to rather publish it in a digital format.
7. In which format must I submit my manuscript?
Please submit your manuscript in Microsoft Word format. Please include a cover page with all your personal details, as well as a synopsis of your manuscript. Please note that the number of pages you submit will change once published. Please keep to the following formatting guidelines:
• 12 point Times New Roman
• 1.5 line spacing
• Start new paragraphs on new lines, but do not leave spaces
• Bold titles, headings and sub-headings
• Images must be high resolution and you must have permission from the copyright owner.
8. I already have a photo/illustration for my book. Why are you charging me for cover design?
You can't judge a book by its cover, but we all do! There’s more to a cover than just the front image. Our graphic designers create a front cover, back cover and a spine, which suit the book’s style. Furthermore, the design of a cover incorporates both text and visual elements to attract the first-time viewer. Our graphic designers have years of experience in creating appealing book covers.
9. Why should I get my manuscript edited?
A well edited manuscript makes all the difference. Even the most experienced writers make many mistakes. Errors in printed books are very embarrassing, both for writers and publishers. Our in-house editors will make sure that all the small errors are ironed out and that the manuscript is entirely presentable.
10. What is an ISBN and why do I need one?
The ISBN (International Standard Book Number) is your book’s identification number or fingerprint. It is a 13-digit number, not a barcode. All book databases use the ISBN to track books. ISBN’s are how readers and buyers find your books. They are essential for sales to bookstores, for online sales, and for listing in databases and directories.
11. Why must I e-mail my manuscript to you?
We need to calculate the final page extent of the book. If you’ve written the book in Word, then it’s probably in A4 format. We convert the manuscript to the appropriate size for print which then, in turn, affects the cost of printing.
The copyright to your work remains with you. Your work is kept secure at all times.
12. Do I keep copyright on my book?
If the book is your original work, the copyright will forever remain yours. There is no fine print or legal documentation involved in this process. At no point is your work being compromised.
13. How long will my project take?
Each project operates along its own schedule. If you have a plain text novel, the book can be completed within roughly two months. We estimate that editing takes about 2 to 3 weeks, the layout another 2 to 3 weeks, and the printing a further 2 weeks. However, the schedule is entirely determined by the nature of the book and our workload at the time.
Books are very delicate creations, so we never rush our projects along. We make sure that the final product is the perfect book you've always wanted and will be proud to sell.
14. What is legal deposit?
According to law, 5 copies of every book that is granted and ISBN and published have to be sent to the 5 national libraries of South Africa. This is for archival purposes.
If we manage the printing of your book, we send the 5 copies to the libraries on your behalf.
15. Will you sell my book for me?
We do not function as a distributor or retailer. We are glad to advise you on how to proceed with such matters but, in essence, these tasks are handed over to the author. The benefit here is that you, as the author, would keep all the profit from sales of the book.
16. How do I get my books?
The books will be delivered to our office, where you can collect them. You can also arrange with a courier company to collect your books.
17. What are my options for marketing and distribution?
You are responsible for the marketing and distribution of your book. We can advise you and create marketing material to help you, but you will have to connect with your market using your own initiative.
18. Now that I have a book, what's next?
It is now up to you to sell your books. Approach your friends and family, and ask them to talk to their friends about it. Talk to the people in your community and send review copies to newspapers. Organise a launch party and invite everyone you know. Do as much social networking as you can an start an author blog.