Self Publishing & Traditional Publishing Help

Let’s Talk Books

You’re writing a book?
You want to write a book?
You wrote a book and now don’t know what to do?

Books are labors of blood, sweat, and tears. Bourbon soaked nights and coffee-soaked mornings. If your book is written already, you know this. If it isn’t, it’s good to set your expectations early.

• Write because you can’t not write.
• Write because you have something to share with the world.
• Write because there are characters in your head that must come out before they drive you to keep a flock of chickens in your backyard and a pool of turtles in the kitchen just to give you something else upon which to fixate.

Do not write because it will make you money or make you famous. Sure, those things might happen, but they might not (probably won’t), and they’re not enough to keep you going when you’re so tired you can’t form a complete sentence unless it’s uttered by one of your characters or describing something in your book.

Writing a book means you have to spend time away from other projects and hobbies. It means you won’t see your friends or your spouse as much. Writing a book is like doing a thesis or dissertation.

If you’re writing and self-publishing, your book will cost money that you could have spent on something else. You might make that money back and you might not. You can use a book to leverage other work, including more books, speaking engagements, interviews, and expert contributed articles, among other things.

Wait! It sounds like I’m talking you out of that, doesn’t it?

I’m really not. I want you to write your book and I want to help you do that! I want you to have your eyes open and understand the commitment you’re taking on when you elect to do this sort of project, because, as your editor or packager, I’m taking it on, too, and it will eat up my time and become my “baby” as well. I can’t help it. I want you to succeed and we’re in this together.

Still with me?

Read on.

Project Audit & Book Proposal Review

“Katie was a tremendous help to me as a hopeful first-time author. She provided clear, warm, and realistic input on everything from what to expect to the nuts and bolts of how to make it happen.”Helen Lawson, Spot On Communications

You’re working on a book proposal but not sure if you’re on the right track. You have a book idea and you want to really talk through how to finish writing it and what your next steps are. You’re super confused and you want someone with experience to look at what you’ve been doing and give you some tips.

FANTASTIC! I have a nifty little package JUST FOR YOU! You can sign up for it rightthisverysecond below. (If this is not what you want, keep scrolling.) If you want to know more about this package, click here.

Book Proposal Development

Put your best foot forward by developing a compelling proposal to shop around to industry specific publishers. Includes research about comp titles, developing an outline, writing the key selling points, suggesting categories, writing author bio & platform description, query letter, and suggested contacts at publishers related to your book.

Book Marketing

Once your book is finished you’re going to need to market it. I have two fantastic PR people I can refer you to, but you’re STILL going to have to do quite a bit of marketing on your own. Luckily, I have some packages that will make this super duper easy for you. Check them out here >

Book Editing & Ghost Writing

Need someone to polish your writing before it goes to your publisher? Need help WRITING your book? That can all be arranged. These prices and options are strictly for development editing and writing, and do not include copyediting, book packaging, design, or uploading for print.

Development Editing
$35 per 1,000 words for first edit.
Hourly at $75/hour for second and additional read-throughs.

Development editing includes structural editing (nonfiction books) and continuity/story editing (fiction), light sentence re-writing, grammar and sentence structure review, and questions for the author to flesh out the manuscript. The first round is a hard edit, and aims to catch most of what’s needed. The second and any subsequent reviews in doc or galley form are intended to be lighter and take less time.

Ghost Writing
$75/hour or per-project fee
Sometimes the project is too much and you need to call in reinforcements to help. Ghost writing pricing includes one round of edits. Subsequent rounds are invoiced at $75/hour.

Copy Editing
Hourly at $50/hour ($200-$800 depending on length.)
Books under 10,000 words might be assessed a flat fee.

Book Packaging for Self Publishing

Are you self publishing? Make your life easier and hire a book packager! I will guide you through every step of the process and make sure that you are proud of your “baby.”

“My best piece of advice, find someone good like Katie Elzer-Peters to help you. You have to put up some money up front but I am thrilled, delighted, and over-the-moon happy with how my book turned out.”Carol Michel, Author of Potted and Pruned: Living a Gardening Life

These are the self-publishing steps:

  1. Idea
  2. Book outline
  3. Writing/photographing
  4. Design layout & cover ($300-400)
  5. Content editing ($20/ 1,000 words or $75/hour)
  6. Copyediting ($50/hour)
  7. Layout (Price depends on book. Words only can be as low as $500. Picture-heavy books
    such as how-to books can be $3,000)
  8. Galley (Layout) review ($40/copy for printing at Kinko’s. Suggested that Author and
    Editor print and review.)
  9. Industry expert review
  10. Edits to design (Included in price if designer was given copy edited manuscript)
  11. Proofreading ($50/hour)
  12. Indexing ($50/hour)
  13. Files prepared for printing/uploading (Included in layout price)
  14. Files uploaded—book published (Included in layout price for up to four platforms.)

Other costs:
ISBN purchase. $40-$250. ($250 gives you a package of 10 ISBNs)
Printed copy of book: $10-$30 depending on book type and vendor.
Typically The Garden of Words starts working with the writer during step 4, but can step in at
any time.

If The Garden of Words is packaging the book, copyediting and proofreading are required steps. The cost of these two steps is highly dependent on manuscript length and type, but ranges between $200-800 for copyediting and $100-$600 for proofreading.
Indexing and industry expert review are optional steps.

If you are self-publishing a novel or picture-light non-fiction book of 40,000 words or more, a minimum budget will be between $2,750 and $5,000. If you are publishing a picture-heavy how-to type of book, budget needs between $5,000 and $8,500 and those are fairly cost-effective estimates based on working with The Garden of Words. These budget estimates include development editing, cover design, interior layout design, book production layout, proofreading, copyediting, file preparation, and upload.

Whether you work with The Garden of Words or another company, these are the budget guidelines you can start with so that you’re not surprised, down the line, at your cash outlay.

Click here to see Book Packaging/ Self Publishing project samples.

IMPORTANT TO NOTE: This pricing is for estimate only. If you have a project you’d like to discuss, please sign up for a 15 minute free discovery call. You’ll fill out a form with a bit of info and then we can chat. If it sounds like we should keep working together we’ll decide next steps.

Know what you want? Confused, but think I can help?

Click HERE to sign up for a free discovery call. Or email me at katie at