The Business of Words and the Ocean Cooperative

Ocean Cooperative Launches Innovative Publishing Concept

Newly-launched Ocean Cooperative Publishing offers an alternative to the choice now faced by writers: searching for a traditional publisher or, on the other hand, self-publishing. OC provides its authors with all the services offered by traditional publishers and cannot of course accept every manuscript submitted. But as a cooperative publisher, Ocean's production fee – actually lower than the fees charged by self-publishing companies –permits it great latitude in accepting unusual projects.


Kingston, Ontario -- (ReleaseWire) -- 08/24/2009 -- The Business of Words, among the world's oldest on-line editorial consultancies ( announced today the official launch of Ocean Cooperative Publishing, a subsidiary founded on an innovative model that bridges the gap between traditional and private publishing.

Editor Robert Buckland, who will serve in the position of publisher at Ocean Cooperative, explained the company's unusual model.

"In the past, authors oversaw the printing and distribution of their own books, but the last two centuries have witnessed the paramountcy of the commercial publisher. These companies have traditionally organized various services under one roof: they choose and edit manuscripts, design and typeset books based on those manuscripts, contract for the printing of the books, then distribute them and promote them – all time-consuming and costly. It's no wonder that this model began to falter with the arrival of electronic media, especially after the middle of the twentieth century. Given the commercial risks, many publishers have found it harder and harder to make ends meet. As a consequence, fewer and fewer writers have been able to find publishers."

Buckland explained that, at first, computer-driven print-on-demand technology seemed to offer an alternative path, since the lower printing costs meant authors could afford to self-publish. Numerous companies sprang up offering to help the self-publisher.

"The catch is that printing is only one part of publishing. Editorial input, design, distribution and promotion are all necessary parts of the picture. And – most important of all – a stigma remains attached to self-publishing. It's seen as vaguely precious or self-indulgent. Never mind that Margaret Atwood, William Blake, Robert Bly, Lord Byron, Stephen King, Rudyard Kipling, Tolstoi and Mark Twain and Virginia Woolf and scores of other great writers were all self-publishers at one time or another. The stigma remains. authors face an awful dilemma: being published in the wrong way or not being published at all."

Ocean Cooperative is a cooperative publisher. Buckland described how cooperative publishers can offer writers of promise a way forward.

"Ocean Cooperative reviews every manuscript submitted and accepts only those we have the time and resources to handle. We devote a lot of time to designing and laying out of books published under the OC imprint and our authors enjoy distribution through a network of 30,000 outlets in 100 countries. Books are produced and shipped within 12 hours of ordering and our authors receive larger royalties than elsewhere. We're in most ways traditional publishers, with this exception: we can't afford to undertake it all alone. We charge a production fee that's lower than that charged by the self-publishing companies but this is nonetheless what allows us to develop a sustainable publishing program and permits us a greater latitude in accepting unusual projects."

Ocean Cooperative Publishing, based in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, serves the global English-language market. In addition to the company's Launch program, it offers extended design work and any level of editorial guidance though its sister company, The Business of Words. "Beyond our distribution deal that's part of our Launch program, we're able to provide our writers with years of expertise in promotion," Buckland said. "Successful publishing is a long-term commitment for author and publisher. Our mission is to open doors."

Ocean Cooperative Publishing may be reached at 1-888-377-7007
The Ocean Cooperative website is
The Business of Words website is