Simon & Schuster ventures into self-publishing

Big ol’ stalwart Simon & Schuster is leaping into the self-publishing market.

It’s teaming up with Author Solutions to create a new house called Archway Publishing, which will be available for authors wanting to self-publish fiction, nonfiction, business or children’s books.

Simon & Schuster hopes to distinguish Archway from other self-publishing options by positioning it as a premium service, at a premium cost to the authors. In addition to the standard editorial, design and distribution services normally offered by Author Solutions, Archway will offer a new range of incredibly expensive packages to keep the bean counters at Simon busy counting beans.

Authors will be offered packages ranging from $1,599 for the least expensive children’s package, to $24,999 (yikes!) for the most expensive business book package.

In return, authors will get a Pulitzer Prize and a golden goose. Actually, no they won’t.

What they’ll get is the chance to be charged even more money to be part of a speaking bureau or get a book trailer made and distributed. Author as profit center.

Simon & Schuster is not quite the tweedy publishing company you imagine. It’s a media powerhouse owned by CBS that prints over two thousand titles annually under 35 different imprints.

It’s a machine for printing money. In this case the authors’ money will do just fine.

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