Lulu Self Publishing Review: Is Self-Publishing Even Worth It?
If you’ve been contemplating availing Lulu Self-Publishing for your writing career, you need to read this review first. And the fact that you are here means that you are already doing preliminary research about this company. Perhaps you are wondering if this company is worth your time and money. I am here to tell you exactly how it is. I will give you a rundown of all the qualities of this program to help you decide whether this program is a good fit for you or not.
There are literally millions of different kinds of scams on the internet. It is imperative that you at least know how to spot some of their qualities to save yourself from their scams. In the industry of writing, while it’s not exactly a breeding ground for scams, there are still plenty of scams surrounding the area. Now, this company I am going to review now is tied to the writing industry. Lulu Self-Publishing, as evident by the name, is a self-publishing company that’s been helping authors all around the world get their works published.
Without any further delays, here is the complete review of the program.
What Exactly Is Lulu Self-Publishing?
Lulu Self-Publishing or just Lulu Publishing is a publishing company for authors all around the world. It basically provides authors a platform to publish their work on their own terms and accord. Of course, Lulu would take a cut of the profit from the sale of the book. Potential authors will be given a form to sign the rights of their book for a royalty fee. This differs on a case-to-case basis but on a macro level, the terms of the contracts are mostly the same.
Lulu Publishing is founded by Bob Young, a co-founder of Red Hat. Lulu began as a book-printing company and then moved into e-book publication and distribution. Fast forward a few years into the business, they have moved into on-demand printing.
How Do Authors Make Money On Lulu Publishing?
Unlike most publishing companies, self-publishing companies would actually offload most of the work to the author who’s wishing to get his book published on the platform. Traditional publishing companies usually would get pitched a book and they go from there.
They have almost the same payment structure though. They work on what they call “royalty.” Basically, the author would get a percentage of all the profits from the sale of his/her book. The percentage differs for authors but obviously, the higher the percentage, the better it will be for the author.
How To Get Started With Lulu Self-Publishing
First and foremost, you need to already have the book ready, or any type of manuscript you want to publish. Make sure that it follows the formatting guide according to Lulu standards to avoid any formatting issues down the line.
Once you think you are ready, make a quick scan of your work to make sure it’s as good as it’s going to get. You don’t want to spot any mistakes when you’re in the process of submitting your work. Check your work then check it again, just to make sure.
From the Lulu website, click the “create an e-book” or “print a book” option. Select the kind of format you want your book to be in. They have plenty of templates to choose from – select the ones that you think would fit in with the theme of your book. Enter useable information about your books like title, author name (pen name), and ISBN. Take note that you have to get your ISBN before you submit to Lulu Publishing as they don’t get that for you.
Once that’s finished, all you have to do is to upload the book and you’re almost done. All that’s left is filling out some book description, author bio, the cover of your book, and other small details. Preview your book to make sure everything looks good on your end.
Complaints About Lulu Self-Publishing
- User Are Not Getting Paid
There are plenty of reports of users not getting paid even if they should have earned from their published work. Many writers reported getting duped into signing 0% royalty fee when they first signup on Lulu. The average price for a published book on Lulu is $19 but from the reports I’ve read, the average payment for users is a mere $1.
- Sometimes Your Investment Doesn’t Work Out
There is a good reason why writers have some sort of image problem that relates to them not being able to make money. That is because it is somewhat true. A good chunk of writers fails to earn a respectable salary because there are just too many books being published today. Only a small percentage of authors get published at all – and Lulu Self-Publishing being a self-publishing company, the chance of an author getting noticed by the public is slim to none at all.
According to some reports, users can expect to pay about $2,700 if they want to publish their books. When you interview the same users who published using this platform, majority of them report losing money on their endeavor.
- They Have Plenty Of Upsells
Lulu has a ton of upsells for aspiring writers. The $2,700 value is not the final value, not by a long shot. They have plenty of upsells that they will offer you once you have signed into their program. If you’ve read some of my reviews, you must already know that I loathe upsells. Upsells that are done right would be cool. In this case, though, Lulu is just using a standard upsell method that offers nothing new or special. They just want to squeeze more money from their authors.
- Reviews Are Not So Good
If you search on the web for reviews on Lulu Self-Publishing, you will be met with a less than lukewarm response. This is due to the fact that there are plenty of customer complaints over the years. What’s a bit baffling is this company has a mostly positive rating on BBB even if it has several bad reviews on different review platforms.
- There Are Better Alternatives
I’ve reviewed several publishing companies in the past. If you are interested in reading those instead, you can head over to my review of Amazon KDP for starters. I’m pretty sure it provides better service than this company. Read the full review for a more in-depth analysis of the program.
One thing is obvious from what I’ve read about Lulu Publishing – and that is to make sure that you read your contract. There are far too many loopholes and security issues that Lulu purposely hides to their users to squeeze more money out of them. One example of this is the often-reported 0% royalty fee.
Based on my findings, I would recommend you to be very wary of this company. If you really want to self-publish, there are plenty of better alternatives out there. I’ve even reviewed some of those companies. Most users of Lulu don’t report earning much so that as you will.