You can choose between traditional publishing, self-publishing, and independent publishing. Here is a quick overview:
Traditional publishing requires submitting a detailed proposal with a competitive analysis and marketing plan. Roughly 3% of proposals are accepted, and the timeline to traditional publishing is very long. If accepted, you give up control of decisions. The publisher assumes the cost to produce the book and provides very minimal marketing support.
Stephen King and Stephen Covey aside, authors of traditionally published books make virtually nothing on royalties. They do not own the rights to their books under the length of the contract with the publisher. Consider traditional publishing if you are in a field that relies on peer review. Otherwise, pursue this path only if you have a clear reason.
Self-publishing is the DIY approach, in which the author either performs all tasks or cobbles together freelancers. The author serves as project manager. This is a pay-for-service model and the one most likely to suffer from poor quality and costly do-overs. There is no quality control in self-publishing because anyone can claim to be an editor or designer.
Independent publishing allows you to produce a high-quality book in which you make the decisions and maintain ownership of your intellectual property and profits. An independent publisher will manage your project and ensure the same quality standards you receive from a traditional publisher. It is a pay-for-service model. Gravitas Press is an independent publisher.