There are many ways to publish. I have two fields of endeavor needing publishing so I'm always looking for the best way. Not only do we have various technical ramifications we then have marketing concerns for our publications. If they don't sell we don't make an income.
I find publishing music to be even more difficult than the process to get published in the big publishers arena. Knowing that with about 200 pieces of music to publish it would take me years just to query half of them I chose to begin publishing as an independent music press.
The first round, or rather the first effort, is now going to press. I have chosen to use MagCloud.com as the publishing house. They produce magazine format material. Although not the standard for sheet music the format does suffice for collected works of solo music, and for longer works in any chamber groupings. At the time of this posting I have already uploaded four issues of the Solo Music magazine and one issue of the Music of Daniel J Hay magazine.
I call them magazines because that is the format used, the paper type, and the publisher is a magazine publisher. In my own mind I think of them as books. In either case, they are on line to be ordered at any time, are produced only when ordered, and MagCloud.com maintains the files, handles the order, prints, and ships. Then they send me my profits. It may not be a perfect world, but this process is a good substitute.
Having lost all my music once before I don't want to loose the new works at all. So I do have a variety of backups in different locations, and now will have a printable and salable form in another safer location. This does not limit my efforts though. I can, and will, be releasing my music in other forms and to other markets because exposure is required. I don't feel my marketing via MagCloud.com would give me a large share of my intended market. And, in any case, this does not cover the mp3 format at all.
So there will be further publishing to cover different formats and markets. At this time you can access my music issues at http://danielhay.magcloud.com