Which Hat Do I Wear?

August 2000
by Nan Field, Dog-Eared Publications

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(Editor’s Note: The following outline comes from a Publishing
University 2000 workshop titled “Which Hat Do I Wear: Scheduling for the
Start-up Publisher.)

I. What Comes First?

A. At first, do most tasks yourself.

1. Save money.

2. Learn your business, your strengths, and what you like to do.

3. Learn which tasks are best done by others.

4. Decide when you can afford to farm out these tasks.

B. If you can’t afford anything else, hire a good editor.

1. I hire up to three editors per book at different stages.

2. I hire for the following types of editing:

a. Developmental

b. Line

c. Copy

d. Proofreading

C. Depending on your needs and strengths, consider hiring these
freelancers: editors, artists, photographers, graphic designers, cover
designers, fulfillment houses, and accountants.

D. To find professional freelance help:

1. List your company in as many places as you can so the freelancers
can find you. Examples:

a. PMA Web site

b. Books in Print

c. Literary Market Place

2. Use the PMA Newsletter.

3. Get references from publishing colleagues.

4. Join local and national publishing groups to network.

a. Freelancers join these groups too.

E. Some freelancers are a better fit with your company than others.

1. They become an ongoing part of your company, almost like employees
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