When you first venture into self-publishing, you know there are going to be costs involved. Hey, if it was cheap, it would be a whole lot easier to break in, right? But there are some things that might escape those keen observation skills starting out and sneak up to bite you in the–wallet. (This post will be updated as I encounter more so stay tuned…)
The first one I’d like to share is the cost of printing out copies for beta readers. Honestly I kind of wished I’d never considered this, but as I was trying to figure out how much ink I would need to print out six copies of the manuscript, it just kind of happened. My printer is an hp, and it takes number 61 black and tricolor cartridges. At the local Wal-mart they cost about $15 each. A ream of copy paper costs maybe four bucks tops. If I figure my total pages (at the time the page count was just under 250, not a door-stopper, but respectable)
Adding it all up, I reckoned that each copy would use most of an ink cartridge and about half a ream of paper. $15 + 2 = $17 +1.50 for the box and 8.00 for the shipping =$ 26.50 each one… Wow. You can buy two trade paperbacks for that money!
So, while I love my readers, and especially those who volunteer to be guinea pigs for my early stuff, sending everyone the nice signed paper copies might be a little too much for me. Fortunately, my beta readers chose mostly pdf files, so I only had to send two.