Let’s tackle payment first. What did the author pay for? If the author paid a company or service to do most or all, then that is subsidy publishing. If the author paid for an editor, a formatter, a cover artist, etc., then that is likely self-publishing. If the author paid nothing and will receive royalties, that is most likely traditional publishing.
But the true test lies in the ownership of the ISBN - the 13 digit number associated with every book. ISBNs are only available from one source - Bowker. The person or company that purchases the ISBNs from Bowker is the publisher on record - forever. ISBNs cannot be sold or transferred.
If the author signs with a traditional publisher, that publisher buys the ISBNs from Bowker and is listed as the publisher.
If the author buys the ISBNs directly from Bowker, that author is listed as the publisher.
If the author buys the ISBN from Smashwords or a subsidy publisher, that entity is listed as the publisher, not the author - and the author is not truly self-published.
Before you jump into the author ring, understand the differences!
For the next two months, Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C. is giving away a different audio book each. Visit @DancingLemurPre on Twitter and reTweet the pinned Tweet for your chance to win. ReTweets to spread the news also appreciated.
The Insecure Writer’s Support Group welcomes new Admins, Nick Wilford and Pat Hatt.
Nick will be running the contests page.
Pat will take over @TheIWSG Twitter.
Thank you for coming on board, Nick and Pat!