Publish with Arkbound

We do things differently to other publishers, but in a good way. Our slogan – ‘Building futures, bridging divides’ – is about opening up new opportunities to writers, building their futures as authors and creative individuals, as well as bridging divides in the publishing world.

Whereas many publishers are too afraid or insular to take risks on new authors, we exist to give them a chance. People from disadvantaged backgrounds, who might otherwise struggle to get published because of their lack of contacts or poor self-esteem, are most welcome. Books that have an environmental or social theme – which help readers to positively change their behaviour – are also encouraged.

But perhaps what sets Arkbound apart is the level of effort that we put into each book, and the range of opportunities we give to our published authors. You can see below a summary of our publishing process.

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Consultation and Assessment

There are many steps in publishing but the first and arguably most critical one is assessing a manuscript and consulting with an author. Arkbound believes that each author is unique, with different needs and goals, so we aim to develop a personal relationship with the authors that we take on.

A manuscript sent to us is carefully assessed to see if we are able to publish it (you can send manuscripts at http://arkbound.com/submissions/). Sometimes there are reasons where we are not able to do this, in which case we may be able to offer an author a Partnership Publishing agreement (see below) or refer them to another publisher.

Proofreading and Editing

Short of the story itself, a good book must be properly written. This means the grammar, punctuation and structure must be excellent. However, in practice even the best writers can overlook simple errors that a fresh pair of eyes would spot straight away. All successful authors have one thing in common: they utilise the services of a good copy-editor and proof-reader. And that is why each and every book published by Arkbound is carefully proofread and edited, without exception.

Cover Design and Illustration

Books are judged by their covers – at least by most people, initially. An outstanding book cover can make all the difference between one that is just average. Arkbound works with talented young designers to produce book covers that say in readers’ minds: we do not just ‘slot in’ stock images and spend a few hours on Photoshop, but dedicate whole days to producing a professional cover. We can also work with authors on this most important of tasks. The same applies for books that have interior illustrations.

Design and Formatting

All books we publish are available in print and in digital format, so each file must be carefully designed and formatted according to the platform where it will be available. Depending on the size of the book and number of illustrations, this can take from one day to a week.

Reviews and Promotion

Writing a good book is one thing, selling it is another. The book market is becoming increasingly saturated and competitive, with far too many authors overlooking the need for extensive promotion.

Arkbound uses innovative and extensive promotional techniques to get each book effectively promoted. Our links to  media has seen Arkbound books featured on leading book review pages, even in full-page spreads within national publications. Through Arkbound’s links, our authors have secured radio interviews, slots at book speaking events, festival appearances and magazine interviews. We utilise an extensive press contact list with hi-tech publicity techniques that set us miles apart from other small publishers.

Reviews form an important part of this. How can someone expect to know if a book is worth buying if they haven’t seen the opinions of other readers? Arkbound guarantees quality reviews for each book published, on a variety of platforms.

Author Website

We work with every author to build a dedicated website for their book. Each website is carefully designed by an in-house specialist and author’s can update it themselves quickly and easily. After being constructed, we also perform a comprehensive SEO exercise to get the website high on search engine rankings for the appropriate keywords.

Printing and Distribution

Arkbound uses Print on Demand for initial print batches, so that we can measure the demand for each book. We use printing methods that are affordable, high quality and environmentally friendly.

Books are made available to an expansive base of retailers through our distributors. Through these networks we can get a book into national retailers, as well as small independent book shops. What is more, the world is a big place… so why not let your book go travelling? With Arkbound as your publisher, your book is enjoyed by people across the world. Our books have virtual passports to cross borders as far afield as America, India and Australia. This doesn’t just mean that they are available anywhere to buy online, but also that they are physically stocked and promoted in these locations. Few other publishers are able to achieve this level of distribution.

Rewards and Awards

We pay our authors a fair royalty that amounts to 66% of each book sale, after the cost of printing, distribution and retailer discounts is taken into account. This means, for a £7.99 book, you will be receiving on average around 0.90p. Many other publishers take a higher royalty, sometimes leaving authors with just a few pence per book sold.

On top of that, we don’t stop just because a book is published and being sold. We also look at whether a book can be submitted for an award – of which there are many. It may also qualify for being entered into the Zooker Award (see http://arkbound.com//zooker-award/).

Development and Translation

We see the publishing process as a journey that can continue indefinitely. Each book published can have subsequent editions or sequels and we work with authors to develop these. Moreover, we seek out translation opportunities so that books can be read by people who don’t speak English. In all cases we work with authors so that they have a good deal and enable them to access new opportunities.

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Best ‘Sustainability’ and ‘Social Enterprise’ FFR categories

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Partnership publishing

Partnership Publishing

Sometimes we are not able to take on an author under a traditional publishing agreement. This could be because we have taken on so many other books and would need to expend additional resources, or because we feel a book requires disproportionate editing. Or it may simply be because the contents lack a good environmental or social theme. Either way, we provide authors with an option to still publish their book with us, if they are able to contribute towards some of the costs.

Partnership publishing, also known as subsidy publishing, does provide certain benefits. As well as being treated in the same way as a book that is traditionally published – going through the same editing, promotional and distribution phases – authors can have greater say in how a book is produced. You can see a table of costs below that give an approximation of the amounts that authors contribute, according to the level of work that goes into a book’s promotion.

Please note that not all books are eligible for partnership publishing – the majority of submissions we receive are not – so do not feel disappointed if this is the case. We can still look at referring you to another publisher who may be better placed to assist you.

Sponsored publishing

Sponsored Publishing

We wish that we could take on every good manuscript that is submitted to us, but as a relatively small publisher – which also does not get funded – doing that is not feasible.

However, there may be some cases where an author may be eligible for sponsorship. This means that the costs of publishing their book are covered by a third party, such as a charitable trust or foundation. There are also cases where books can be published after successful crowdfunding campaigns.

If we think your book can be sponsored then we will let you know and aim to help you in the fundraising process. In certain cases, your book may be eligible for sponsorship from the Arkbound Foundation (please visit http://www.arkfound.org/ for more details).

It is to be emphasised that authors sponsored by the Foundation usually come from disadvantaged backgrounds and have written books with a strong environmental or social theme.

Partnership Publishing – Author Contributions Table

Level of Publishing
‘BASIC’ TIER – £690‘STANDARD’ TIER – £1150‘ENHANCED’ TIER – £2450
Editing Up to 40,000 wordsUp to 80,000 wordsUp to 120,000 words
ProofreadingUp to 40,000 wordsUp to 80,000 wordsUp to 120,000 words
Ebook formattingYesYesYes
Reviews (Amazon, Smashwords, BookReviews, Authors promoting Authors, and other bespoke blogs)1 independent review on multiple sites3 independent reviews on multiple sites5 independent reviews on multiple sites
Featuring on Arkbound home page DiscretionaryYes
Included on Featured Books pageYesYes
Featured in Boundless magazine DiscretionaryYes
Arkbound ISBN Allocation and bar codeYesYesYes
Print on Demand (including setup and proofs)YesYesYes
Localised, Online and Regional DistributionDiscretionaryYesYes
Wider Distribution (All main retailers and connected independent stores, international reach)DiscretionaryDiscretionaryYes
Promotional GuideYesYesYes
Standard Press ReleasesYesYesN/A
Enhanced Press Releases and bespoke PR work (Radio, events, magazine reviews and more)Yes
Free colour paperback copies3510
Author 1-1 consultation and ongoing support by telephone and email1 consultation session3 consultation sessionsUnlimited sessions
Author websiteAn optional add-onAn optional add-onYes

(If sponsored, an optional add-on)

Promotional material starter kit (bookmarks, flyers and one optional promotional item – t-shirt or drink mats – with book images and QR codes)Normal kitExpanded kit
Cover design BasicEnhancedEnhanced