When the Covid pandemic started I began a project to create a book of arrangements for solo vibraphone. Although I have a closet full of music books I've never published my own. I'm on the last piece in the collection and starting to look for info on how to get it published. After looking at many videos online about copyright I understand that part but none of that information goes in the further direction of how to actually get from my music stand to a publisher.
I found a vibesworkshop.com discussion from 2012 that has some info about this but my questions are a bit different. So, here they are, if anyone has experience in this I appreciate your input! :-)
1. Assuming I get copyright permission from the copyright owner to publish my arrangements do I then contact a publisher - a publisher that does percussion music like Kendor or Studio4 - and say hey I've got these arrangements I've been working on and I'd like to publish them?
2. Do I get my copyright on the arrangements before I send it to them? This part puzzled me a bit - timing wise - since I want to copyright the entire work and I would not necessarily have all the copyright's completed when I contact them.
3. All the charts are done in Finale. I have done a lot of proofreading (and an editing friend/assistant) to confirm that each piece is in a format that is consistent throughout the 5 pieces - but does a publisher accept my charts in, for instance, PDF format, and then do the cover design? Or do they want to set the music to their own font/design/layout standards? (not that Schirmer Music is going to be my publisher!)
4. I did desktop publishing for a couple of decades for investment banks and law firms so can deliver a full camera ready copy or PDF including a cover, intro, notes, and the charts so would they prefer that?
5. If you have done this before did you shop it around to different publishers looking for the best percentage, or willingness to accept your charts, or a feeling that one company was better to work with?
Thank you for your suggestions!