A Comprehensive Guide to Publishing Your Book in Dubai

A Comprehensive Guide to Publishing Your Book in Dubai

For many, books are an alternative reality, an escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. By authoring a book, you can create your portal to a captivating universe and invite others to journey through it. Consider this as a cue to transform your ideas, thoughts, and imagination into a best-selling book.

Do you have a story to tell the world but feel confused about where to start and how to publish it? If you are a first-time author, the entire process of publishing might scare you a bit. From penning your masterpieces to getting them on the shelves, this guide will simplify the process of publishing a book in Dubai.

Write your book

The first step in publishing a book is the crucial and creative process of writing and editing. Whether it is a compelling story, a non-fiction concept, or a collection of poems, you need to have an idea about what the book will be at the end.

Before you start writing, have a rough idea about the plot, characters, tone of writing, theme, and the message you want to convey to your audience. You can then create a roadmap or an initial structure for your book. You also need to identify the genre for your book as this will help you in choosing tone and diction while writing.

You can begin the process of drafting your manuscript. During this phase, focus on getting your ideas down on paper without worrying too much about perfection. You can always refine and edit these in the later stages.

Once done with the initial draft, assess your work, pay attention to plot development and character arcs, and make the necessary changes. You can also ask your friends, family, or fellow writers to get valuable insights and a fresh perspective on your work.

Once done with the second draft, you can look for professional editors and beta readers to go through your work. They offer constructive feedback on areas such as grammar, syntax, pacing, and overall storytelling. Additionally, their objective perspective can elevate the quality of your work. The result of this step is the final manuscript.

Writing and editing may take a while and you might have to go back and forth editing your manuscript. It may involve multiple drafts and rounds of revision to achieve the level of polish needed for publication.

Decide the publishing route

This is an important step in publishing a book. Some of the established writers often choose their publishing house before completing the manuscript. However, first-time authors would require a manuscript in most cases. Deciding your publishing routes will determine how your book will reach readers, and it generally boils down to two main options: traditional publishing and self-publishing.

In traditional publishing, authors seek representation from literary agents, who will act as intermediaries between authors and traditional publishing houses. They also help authors negotiate contracts and navigate the submission process. If a publishing house is interested in your book, they may offer a book deal, which includes an advance against future royalties and other contractual terms. Most of the traditional publishing houses offer the benefits of professional support, editorial guidance, and wider distribution through established networks.

The traditional publishing houses will help you till the book reaches its audience. The publishing houses are aware of the market trends and may ask you to make amendments to your manuscript. They have in-house designers who will help you with your book cover, layout, and illustrations. They will also print the book, market it, and manage the accounts for your book.

Some of the popular publishing houses in Dubai are:


However, if your values do not align with the any publishing houses, you can go for self-publishing. Using platforms like Amazon KDP, you can take complete control of your book. In this route, you can decide the creative and business aspects of their books, including cover design, pricing, and release timing. It is a faster route to getting the book into the market. While this offers complete freedom, it also means that authors must take on the responsibility of marketing and promoting their books.

The decision between traditional publishing and self-publishing should be influenced by your goals, preferences, and the specific characteristics of your book. Traditional publishing may be more suitable for authors seeking wider recognition, while self-publishing is often chosen by those who value creative control. Some genres or niche topics may find greater success through self-publishing, as traditional publishers may focus on more mainstream genres.

Book designing and formatting

The cover of the book and layout are as important as the content inside the book. Contrary to the phrase ‘Do not judge a book by its cover’, most of us get influenced by the look when buying a book. Most of the traditional publishing houses offer these services. However, if you are planning to self-publish your book, you need to perfect this step as it determines the visual appeal and readability of your book, both in print and digital formats.

For the cover, invest in a professionally designed, genre-appropriate visual that captivates potential readers. Internally, choose a layout style, set page size and margins, and format elements like chapter headings and page numbers consistently. If the book is going to be published in both formats, print and digital, you need to adjust the layout for different trim sizes in print and optimize formatting for e-books.


In traditional publishing, the publishing house will take care of the process. With their established contacts, they will distribute it to retailers. The marketing and publicity part of publishing will also be taken care of by the publishing house.

In self-publishing, you can choose distribution channels like Amazon KDP, local bookstores, or digital formats. Distribution is often global through online retailers, utilizing print-on-demand services. As you are entirely responsible for marketing and distribution, you can also expand to other platforms based on book traction. You can set the prices and the royalty rates. Royalties are the income you receive for each sale.

Promote your book

The main step in the post-production part of publishing is to let the world know about your book. Before you begin with the sale of your book, you need to create awareness about the book, reach potential readers, and maximize the visibility in the market. Authors should establish a compelling online presence to engage with readers and build a community. You have to open an author website and actively maintain your social media profiles. You can also use new media marketing techniques like using social media to release teasers, updates, and behind-the-scenes content to enhance visibility. Additionally, seeking book reviews, participating in author interviews, and submitting to literary awards contribute to the book's credibility and reach. If possible, try to get a foreword written by an established author in the same genre.

You can host a launch event to celebrate the release of your book. This could be a virtual event, a physical book signing, or a combination of both. At the launch event, engage with your audience, answer questions, and make the launch memorable. The key is to create an ongoing, adaptable marketing effort that aligns with evolving trends.

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