Nov 1, 2010

Path to Self-Publishing

As mentioned in my last post, I will self-publish one of my designs if another publisher has not bought one of mine by the end of the year. Since choosing a new logo, I filed to incorporate Visible Hand Games, Ltd. Since I received a receipt from the NY Department of State, I guess I can assume that was completed.

Side note: right in the mail with the receipt were several advertisements for credit card machines addressed to Visible Hand Games. It's funny how many people knew I had incorporated before I received notice.

I also decided on which prototype I want to publish and got an initial quote from a printer in China. It didn't seem that cheap and they had a high minimum order number (1,500 units), so I want to get some more quotes for comparison.

Specifically, they were charging $6 per unit, which is already half of what I wanted to sell the game for. Once you add in a fulfillment service and shipping to customers, I'm going to be selling at pretty close to cost. I'd be fine with that, except my goal is to break even and it would mean I would need to sell all 1,500 copies to do that. I don't think I'll be able to sell that many. That isn't because it is a bad game. I actually think this particular design is highly marketable. However, I assume I won't be very good at the marketing side of this since it is my first try.

Anyway, I need to spend some time getting more quotes for either a lower price or a lower minimum print run. I think I could sell out 500 copies (yes, this is me being optimistic). This means either finding a printer for $6 or $7 per unit willing to do only 500 copies or one who can do 1,500 copies at $3 or $4 per unit.

Next steps:

  • Obtain EIN from IRS
  • Obtain tax ID from NY state
  • Set up checking account for the business
  • File for Subchapter S status
  • Get quotes from printers in the US
  • Hire artist or do art myself


  1. Anonymous6:53 AM

    Have you researched or understood the import tax costs? I know nothing about this, but from when I've traveled internationally, i have to declare the value of everything entering the country and pay import taxes on it. I'm assuming that anyone who sells merchandise manufactured overseas is in the same boat.

  2. That quote from China included shipping and customs.