Cover Photo: This is an illustration of a woman holding a book in front of half her face. The book cover has a woman's and man's face looking at each other smiling. The woman's face on the cover matches up with the real womans face. In the background are drawings of heart shaped candy with "pros" and "cons" written on them.
Illustration by Eliza Harris

Should I Self-Publish My Romance Novel?

For our Romance Week series, Bryn Donovan breaks down the pros and cons of self publishing as a romance writer.

more than half

You Don’t Need a Book Deal

Your Book Comes Out Much Faster


You Have Complete Control

You Own All Your Rights

You Get a Higher Royalty Rate

The Cons:

You Don’t Get a Publisher’s Seal of Approval

You Have to Pay for Everything

this post on self-publishing costs

You Don’t Benefit from a Publisher’s Expertise

It’s Hard to Get Your Book into Brick-and-Mortar Bookstores

You Have to Do or Oversee Everything

You Have to Market It Yourself


Self-Publishing, Especially, Favors Fast Writers

Where to Sell Self-Published Books

Beyond Ebooks: Barnes and Noble Press, ACX, and More

Ingram Spark

Manuscript Wish List

Bryn Donovan is a former executive editor in publishing and an author coach and book editor at She’s the author of several romance novels, including the #1 Publishers Weekly bestseller Sunrise Cabin, and ten children’s books. She was the creative producer of two Hallmark Channel movies, A Timeless Christmas and Christmas in Evergreen, and she’s written three reference books for writers. Her work has been published in Writer’s Digest, McSweeney’s, and Ploughshares. Bryn earned an MFA in Creative Writing at the University of Arizona. She lives in Chicago and blogs about writing and positivity at