Thursday, November 24, 2011

To self-publish or not to self-publish...

I've been reading a bit lately about the 'new' publishing world, and how self-publishing has become a legitimate way for a writer to become published. It's an interesting time, to say the least, and one that's making me sit down and seriously consider the direction I take my career.

Some of the advice I'm reading (from more than one refutable source) includes:
  • why you no longer need an agent but an IP attorney instead.
    • also included in this was why you should ignore publishing houses who say they will not accept unagented queries or submissions and send them a very professional submission package
  • why going both routes (ie, indie publishing and the traditional way) should be the new normal now, as this provides you with options when it comes to negotiating contracts etc.
  • how being self-published will not impact on your chances with a traditional publisher   
  • how being a smart writer is vital; this includes learning all there is to know about self-publishing and knowing a scam when you see one
All of this is of course built upon the basic premise that you know how to write well, you have your work edited by someone who knows how to edit, you have a stylish, eye-catching cover (because believe it or not but people do judge books by their covers), and you make sure your book is correctly formatted.

There are numerous resources out there now to help you self-publish in the best way possible (okay, I'm writing this mostly as notes for myself while I consider my writing future, because in typical Marty fashion, I'm about a year behind everyone else on this), and David H Burton provides a brilliant post listing a lot of extremely useful info (after explaining why you really should avoid Penguin's self-publishing program Book Country) regarding this. There are enough links on that page to keep you reading for days...

Interesting times... I don't profess to know anywhere near enough about the pros and cons of self-publishing versus going the traditional route, but I will definitely be reading up on this topic. I had a short story published on Horror World back in April that is now no longer available to the public; maybe I should consider self-publishing this?

Novel update: am finishing off my last short story for the year and will then be delving back into novel #2, with the aim of finishing the edits by the end of the year. Then I'll revise novel #1, perhaps with the aim of turning that into a novella.

Just brought another eBook, too (damn you one-click purchase!): The Indie Journey by Scott Nicholson