By Henry DeVries, CEO, Indie Books Intl.
Indie publishing is much, much faster than traditional publishing.
With a traditional royalty-based publisher it typically takes a year or years to sell the proposal idea, then another year after the author submits the manuscript to publish the book. The fastest I have done the process is one year and that was fast-tracked all the way. Prior books took about two years.
As a developmental editor or ghostwriter it typically takes me six months to finish a manuscript. That is what we call a publishable manuscript.
Once a publishable manuscript is completed (the author did the best job he or she could and is now ready to let the manuscript go), then it takes another three to four months for an indie published book to be for sale on Amazon and on Kindle, Nook, and iBooks.
About of the third of the time is devoted to line editing and style checking. The next third of the process is dedicated to designing the front cover, back cover, and interior of the book. Finally, the last third is taken up by production and quality control steps.