The great publishing wheel keeps spinning

Posted: August 24, 2013 in Uncategorized
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Since publishing my debut novel in 2012, I’ve learned a lot about publishing. I’ve learned there is still a crest of the wave for indie authors who want to publish their work, providing it is well-written and professionally presented.

I’ve also learned there are a myriad of small publishers out there hoping to entice the indie authors to them, and don’t really have the capacity to get your book ‘seen’ and really don’t fall into a ‘traditional’ publishing model, despite their pretences. I’ve also learned there are a swag of disreputable publishers who set themselves up overnight and don’t give a cracker about their authors.

And, there is the fact there are millions of books, self published or otherwise, flooding the market and as an author the biggest challenge will be to get your book noticed. You can have the best book in the world but if nobody sees it, you are defeating the purpose of ‘publishing’ it.

Over the past 18 months of dipping my toe reasonably assertively into the publishing world I’ve seen some good things and some bad things – not the least was the horrendously offensive bullying of a new author on Goodreads recently. She hadn’t even published her book and when there were some negative reviews posted on Goodreads about it, asked the question: how people could review her work when it hadn’t been published? What followed demonstrated the nastiness (bordering on illegal) cyber bullying where she was threatened with rape among other things. Needless to say the soon to be debut author withdrew her work and won’t be publishing it any time soon.

Authors in today’s marketplace operate in a highly competitive, impersonal internet world where stories and readers are a business and dreams can quickly turn sour on the whim of the darker side of human nature – greed, envy and dishonesty.

What I’ve learned is the reason why so many of us opt for self-publishing, and we do it because our dreams need protecting. Provided you’ve got the ‘ticker’ to self-publish, and the time to promote and market your book, and you can get a cover, editing and formatting professionally done, your prospects are better than risking it with the many smaller publishers who don’t pay advances, give you 10% of the royalties if you’re lucky and expect you to do all your promotion and marketing for them. And all they do is upload onto Amazon and provide your book as a POD, and send out the odd press release to the many free PR sites. You may as well self-publish and take all the royalties after Amazon gets its cut – and enjoy the experience!

Publishing is not a world for everyone but keeping faith in the integrity of your work is half the battle. And like everything in life, the wheel turns and lands on good experiences and good people every now and then.


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