Whether you are a first-time author, or an established author looking to release your next book, we are here to help. At Clark & Mackay, we operate a hybrid model of book publishing services, which is a mix between self-publishing and traditional publishing. Pulling strengths from both self and traditional publishing, our focus stems from listening to your vision for success and applying a publishing process for you to reach your goals. Because everyone’s vision of success is different, even yours.
The hybrid publishing model ensures that you will retain 100% of your publishing rights, which in our mind is the single greatest asset you can retain. You will also have controlling input into your book editing, book and cover design, marketing, and of course, the creative direction of your book.
As your publisher, we can help as little or as much as you need for your publishing journey. And while our full publishing process involves everything from ghost-writing, title registration, editorial, typesetting, cover design, production, author platform creation and book marketing, we can just as easily offer our advice and support for you on your self-publishing journey.
Publishing with our team will ensure that your journey to becoming a published author will be managed under the one roof with a publisher who works directly with you as the author. This ensures that our high standards of work are maintained, and that your book is as polished and professional as possible, within the scope of services that you wish to work within.
It is also worth mentioning that we have our own book distribution network that covers both brick and mortar stores, as well as a large list of online sellers, like Amazon, to get your book out there into the world.
Our aim is that you, like every author we work with, have a chance to share your story with the world, in a way that is authentic to you and your vision. So, whatever your thoughts on writing, editing, design, or book marketing, our team of book publishing professionals are here to help.
There is often a stigma associated with the term self-publishing, and there can be connotations made between self and vanity publishing as well. It is often said that those who self-published, did it for ego. However, in the last twenty years, self-publishing has become a large portion of the publishing industry, with hundreds of thousands of titles being published each year. The sheer breadth of the industry and with low barriers to entry, however, does mean that many authors are no more informed—or wiser—about the process now than they were when self-publishing first began.
With a lack of information and knowledge, and of course support, the self-published author can often find themselves feeling isolated, and may not sell enough books to cover their costs of publishing.
Obviously, your meaning of success through publishing might be vastly different from the next author, so a solid plan and quality process is important for you to both raise awareness about your author brand and your book. Visibility in the market leads to credibility in your field, which in turn leads to profitability. Because let’s face it, we don’t want your publishing journey to be a sunk cost, we want to set and reach target for book publishing success.
The hybrid publishing model has become a very popular form of book publishing in the last five to yen years, as teams of qualified publishing professionals join forces to offer the full array of publishing services for authors like you.
As hybrid publishers, we provide publishing services based on the same processes that are used in the trade publishing industry. For example, all of our editors have the necessary qualifications and experience to warrant their professional input into your book; our book designers are industry professionals who do not deviate from the quality control needed for the retail market to take your publication seriously; and our printing options are handled by trade book printers, whose core focus is professional book production.
We also facilitate a distribution network through which we promote our titles in catalogues to distributors, suppliers, and retailers within the book selling industry. Our immediate focus is Australia, New Zealand, and the United States; however, our network also spreads to Canada, the United Kingdom, and Europe.
As hybrid publishers, it is our goal to create books that meet or exceed your expectations, while positioning you to thrive in the marketplace. Along with our comprehensive publishing process, focused on producing industry standard publications, we offer additional services and support in the areas of ghost-writing, writing mentorships, audiobook development, eBooks, as well as marketing strategies and book distribution services. This means that there is no need to draw from several different publishing professionals, as we have everything here under the one roof.
A structural edit is the most comprehensive editorial process, above which the only process is ghost-writing, idea inception, or our book writing strategies and packages. A structural edit does not involve checking for punctuation, spelling, or grammar, as this falls within the scope of the copy editor’s role. The structural edit’s consideration is to the actual sequence of sentences, phrases, and paragraphs, as well as the logical flow that makes up the manuscript as a whole. Think big picture of the manuscript.
It is very important to note that the structural editing process is not about changing your voice or rewriting your manuscript; instead, it will ensure that you receive constructive feedback with recommendations for improvement to your manuscript. This process assists with correcting and improving your work so as to best reach your target reader.
In some cases, your editor will be providing rewording of sentences, or suggesting paragraph and chapter reconstruction or rewording. This includes the removal of repetition to ensure your manuscript is in the best structural position to proceed with the book editing process.
The structural editing process can take up to 8 weeks to complete, though this is dependent on each book. Your publisher will alert you to the expected date of completion early in the process.
Copy editing, or line editing, is the romanticised idea of editing, through which an editor will review typographical and grammatical errors; however, interestingly, it is not the primary focus of this edit. Your editor will make suggested changes to sentence structure, clarity, sense, and flow, by ensuring that the presentation of the manuscript has clarity and flow of message and narrative. Your editor will check the content for reader comprehension, as well as producing checks for genre-specific tone, language, and terminology. Your copy editor will also ensure your chapter arrangement is logical, that the length is appropriate for the genre, and that the overall length of the book is on target.
Please note that we suggest the copy editing process is a necessity to ensure your publication can meet industry standards and have the best chance of success in the world.
The copy editing process can take up to 4 weeks to complete, though this is dependent on each book. Your publisher will alert you to the expected date of completion, early in the process.
The proofread is the last type of editing service that we provide, and please note that it should be used only as a last check. Your proofreader will focus only on spelling, typographical, and grammatical concerns. If your manuscript has been through the full book editing process, your proofread should be a very quick process indeed.
Your proofreader will review the manuscript for inconsistencies such as instances of unclear or weak phrasing, awkward repetitions, and will also be thoroughly reviewing your manuscript to find and address any subject-verb agreement problems, incorrect word choices, improper punctuation usage, as well as spelling, typographical, and grammatical concerns. Additionally, and as we tend to provide the proofreading service as part of the typesetting and design stage, your proofread will also check for light formatting errors as well. Your proofreader will also ensure the document adheres to the chosen style guide which you would have discussed with your publisher at the beginning of the editing process.
The proofreading process can take up to 4 weeks to complete, though this is dependent on each book. Your publisher will alert you to the expected date of completion early in the process.
This process involves our team registering your book title, blurb, as well as the retail price, genre, and book size to your unique ISBN. This stands for International Standard Book Number, and as part of our service, we will organise both the paperback or the hardcover ISBN as well as your eBook ISBN.
From there, we will generate your unique barcode, which we can later place on your book cover design. We will also organise the pre-publication data with the National Library, and by doing so, are then responsible for the legal deposits to the National and State Libraries. This means that we do all the paper pushing for you. Phew!
To help us complete the process for you, your publisher will send you a form to complete. This form will include all the necessary information for us to lock in your unique ISBN. Please don’t be worried if you haven’t finalised your title, or are unsure of the price or other details, as we can help you.
The entire process of registering your unique ISBN, the cataloguing in publication data, as well as the generation of your unique barcode can take up to five hours of administration to complete.
We say that we don’t judge a book by it’s cover, but we do. And you know you do! In fact, it’s more often than not, the first thing that we see and the first thing that draws our attention is the cover design. What attracts our eye and helps us make that decision to pick up the book is the book cover imagery and how it speaks to us. As such, during your publishing process, we need to explore your book cover idea and ensure that it is effective and relevant, but most of all eye-catching.
A very common thread in the field of design for commercial needs, is to keep it simple. You know that saying ‘Keep it Simple, Silly’. This is because many consumers do not have time to understand hidden meanings, or contemplate intricate elements. They will instead, simply move to the next book, or worse, not even see your cover on the shelf.
In keeping it simple, the fonts that are chosen, both for your book interior and cover design, are incredibly important. Your publisher will chose fonts that are simple and easy to read, and convey you and your book’s personality, and messaging as well. As such, your publisher might choose to show you a number of different fonts, though we maintain that whatever you choose, should be consistent across all portions of your author platform.
Our cover design process involves the development of a design brief with your publisher. It is critical for the outline of style, images, fonts, and colours to be included. In many cases, our team will make the design based on the brief produced by your and your publisher, however, if there are specific materials that you would like to use, please let us know and we can ensure that they are included.
Our team will be able to work these elements into the design, or, if you have no idea, your publisher can direct the team from a blank canvas—but of course, a little bit of information goes a long way. From there, we will produce two previews of your potential cover before we move to the full design.
We do have a set amount of amendments we can make to the cover design, which can include sampling different fonts and images, as well as shuffling their placements. These small changes do take time, so we allow up to two hours of amendments.
Aside from the design of your book cover, the format and typesetting of your book can be a very exciting process. What you might not know, is that the book format and typesetting process is actually the result of very careful planning and attention to detail. Our book design team will work hard behind the scenes to make sure we have the proper styles, spacing, and fonts that are in theme with your book, your personality, and your message. Of course, your publisher will work with you to ensure we have chosen the right book dimensions for your market and your word count as well. It can be a very delicate balance.
When the full format of your book is complete, your publisher will review the design, focusing on the elements that you, or the reader would be unlikely to consider or even notice. It is highly likely that there will even be rounds of amendments prior to you receiving the file for your author review.
Once the file is sent for your review, you will also be sent an amendments form to make note of any changes, relevant to the overall look and feel of the book. Your amendments should only focus on formatting issues, stylisation of fonts, and other design elements. Please note that any major changes in font, book size, or spacing will be seen as outside the amendments process. Additionally, your publisher will discuss with you that no serious editorial changes should be made at this stage.
Clarity of communication is very important between you and your publisher during the design process. While you might not know the industry expected standards for format and typesetting of a book, your team are well versed.
The format and typesetting process can be quite succinct, with the preview taking roughly 1 week, and the full design taking up to 3 weeks to complete. Any amendments will have another 1 week of turnaround time. Once finished, your book will be ready for one last round of proofreading before we head into production!
Now that your book cover design and book format are complete, we are ready for the printing process! Depending on the size of the print run you are wanting to produce, there are three types of printing that we employ. Your publisher will discuss the options with you based on your budget, your book printing quantity, as well as your marketing strategy and whether we are printing paperback or hardcover.
The first type of printing is for very low quantities, and is known as Print On Demand (POD). With our POD system, we can print as few as one book at a time. It is a very low cost option for authors wanting to break into the market, and does come with some interesting positives and negatives. For example, with the low cost entry, there are limitations on the sides and paper stocks that we can choose from. And the price is relatively set, meaning there are no economies of scale when printing larger quantities. There are, however, lots of positives to this system as well. Consider if you have sales offshore, this book printing option will allow you to print in the country of the order, and then ship the book locally, rather than having to ship it all the way around the world. This can save you on shipping!
From there, the next type of printing is digital printing. This type of production is really the mainstay of our book printing facility, as most of our orders are produced in this fashion. We work from our book printing facility in Brisbane, Australia, where the whole process is managed locally. Digital production is highly economical for authors looking to produce mid-range quantities of books. This would be in the range of 50 up to 1000 books. There are minor limitations to this process, especially when looking at producing hardcover books, and books that have lots of colour pages as well. The major positive with this type of book printing process, is the short lead time, as we are able to produce books within roughly two weeks from approval.
Lastly, offset book printing is the printing process we employ when looking to produce more than 1000 books, or books with lots of colour pages, and hardcover books as well. Offset book production is employed in what we call economies of scale. This means that the price per unit drops dramatically when printing in large quantities. While we always strive to keep our book production within our local facility, our primary focus is to ensure you are making a return on your investment. As such, we have book printing partners in Malaysia, India, Singapore, and Hong Kong that we have worked with for many years.
As you move through the book publishing process, your publisher will discuss the different options with you and confirm the print costs in line with the initial quote that you were given at the start of your book publishing journey. The final price will be dependent on a number of factors that include the book’s size, the number of pages, as well as the paper stock, book cover finish, and the type of binding.
To begin your book printing process, we will first produce a proof copy. This is called a galley proof, and is normally a loose-leaf copy of the book produced on the same paper and the same press for you to review before we proceed. At this stage, it is important to confirm that you are happy with the paper stocks, the colours, and of course, the size of your book. Your publisher will work with you to ensure you are happy to approve and proceed, and oversee any changes that you might want to make. The proofing stage is very important as a last minute check of the book before we proceed to print. So be sure to check everything very thoroughly!
From there, and once you have approved the proof copy, your publisher will press the big green print button! In terms of timeline, proof copies, regardless of which book printing method they have been produced through, will take approximately 2 weeks to be printed, checked, and sent to you. Once approved, you can expect:
At Clark & Mackay, we have worked with thousands of authors, and through each of those publishing journeys we have improved and finessed our service offerings to ensure that we can assist every author to the best of our ability.
Through this process of learning, we have produced four unique publishing packages, designed to suit the needs of authors depending on their vision of success, as well as their budget. Please look over the packages below, as well as the available services within each package, and let us know which package is for you.
Of course, if one of our book publishing packages doesn’t fit you exactly, we can happily provide you a customised book publishing package with the exact services you are looking for!
At CLARK & MACKAY we are STORYTELLERS in every sense of the word.
Clark & Mackay was founded in 1928, making us one of the oldest printing and publishing firms in Queensland.
Whether it is printing marketing materials as part of our commercial printing arm, or through helping authors achieve their life-long dream of writing and publishing a book, we are specialists in communicating your story.
We help businesses and authors like you, ensure that your story is seen and heard in the best possible light, in a way that truly represents you and your vision for your book.
Even now, 95 years after we first opened our doors, we are proud to uphold our founding fathers’ focus on good old-fashioned services with a smile and the constant strive for excellence. As one of Queensland’s longest standing printing and publishing firms, it is still as important to us today as it was then, to deliver a 5-star experience for all of our authors.
To honour our longstanding history, our logo is derived from the Arab Letterpress, a printing machine that was used in print houses from the 1890s, though it was based on technology developed nearly a thousand years prior! The letterpress technology was used in our factory up until the 1940s, and we even have one on display in our Brisbane office!
With our roots firmly planted in history, we strive for the future in today’s world of book publishing as an independent hybrid publisher. This means our authors retain all the publishing rights of their works, and that we do not take ongoing royalties or sales commissions. As your publisher, we are able to provide as much or as little support as you need to bring your story to life.
To do this, we offer a wide range of book publishing services from consults and strategy sessions, through appraisals and editing, to book design and typesetting, and even have our own book printing facility in Brisbane, where we continue some traditions of letterpress printing.
Our service offerings extend post-production into book distribution and marketing support for all authors, with tailored book marketing strategies for your vision of success. And we also operate our very own audiobook studio from our Brisbane facility, where you can record and have your audiobook distributed to the world.
From a production viewpoint, we are able to provide an array of print on demand, digital print, and offset printing, as well as paperback, hardcover, and a trove of book finishing options to ensure that your published book is exactly how you dreamed!
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