These are large publishing houses, like Penguin and Random House. To
sell your book to a traditional publisher, you need to write a book
proposal (like a business plan) that includes how you will market your
You will also hire a literary agent (kind of like a real estate
agent). If you go this route it takes two to three years before your
book comes out, and you will earn royalties of about 10%.
You are still
responsible for marketing your book.
Hybrid publishers are "all the small publishing houses" you've been
hearing about. These publishers offer editing and publishing services
for a fee. In exchange, they keep a large percentage of your royalties,
leaving you with about 50%.
You are still responsible for marketing your
With self-publishing, you set up your branded publishing division, which you
own for the life of your products. You pay for editorial and publishing
services, but own and control everything. You also keep 100% of your
You are still responsible for marketing your book, but you
keep everything you earn.