Friday, April 1, 2011

To Self-Publish or Not to Self-Publish...

Is that really the question? Or is it part of the answer?

Amanda Hocking, of self-publishing fame signed a multi-million dollar contract with a publisher. In direct contrast, Barry Eisler told his publisher to take a leap and has gone the self-publishing route.

So, you are looking at your manuscript and thinking "What should I do?"

Contrary to what EVERYONE thinks, how you publish your work is a very personal decision. No matter what advice you are given, it all comes down to you. YOU are the person responsible for your success. Not the agent, the publisher, or the marketing executive.

Authors should invest the time to find out the value of agents, editors, and publishers. Ask questions of people in the field. How much did Madam Self-Published spend on copy editing, cover art, and marketing. Is that an investment you can afford to take. Or will sharing the risk (and royalties) with a publisher enable you to do what you do best -- write? If you decide to self-publish, what distribution channels are you going to utilize? If you go with a publisher, determine which have the most author-friendly contracts and highest royalty rates.

Even better, a smart author can use a combination of traditional, e-pub, and self-pub to spread their risk and, hopefully, capture a larger share of the market.

Knowledge, combined with an author's personal yens and know-how, allows her/him to use resources to the best advantage and not be tossed around like a leaf every time the 'winds of change' breeze through the industry.

Happy Writing!


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