Monday, May 08, 2006

Why Self Publishing Your Novel is a Bad Idea . . .

I've been saying that for years. You may not agree, but
this guy hit the nail on the head:

The exceptions: Print on Demand presses are a legitimate avenue in certain special circumstances--if you have a nonfiction book for a specialized audience that could never find national distribution (for instance, a book on Florida law) or if your novel was previously in print and you'd like to keep it in print for readers who have a hard time finding a copy, go ahead, sign the print on demand contract.

But most of the time, even if it's not true, self-publishing gives the impression that you weren't good enough to make it at a traditional publisher, so you took the easy route to publication.

(I've just offended about a zillion people. Sorry.)

And, LOL, the slushpile blogger is so right--I don't know any legitimate writer who introduces himself/herself as a "published author." For one thing, it's redundant. For another, it's pretentious. When you've paid your dues, learned the ropes, and gone through the fire (and a few dozen other metaphors), you simply call yourself a writer.

My, my, I'm just full of opinions at this hour. Back for the Monday weigh-in later. (I'm writing this on Sunday night!)



Anonymous said...

You're right, Ange. If anybody asks what I do, I always say, "I'm a writer." If they want to know anymore than that, they'll ask. If they don't ask, great! We can talk about other things!

Ruth said...

Coming from working the retail end of things, I have to say that I completely agree with you about the self-publish thing.

Illuminating Fiction said...

Self-publishing is definitely not the way to go.

As a freelance editor, I have seen mss from writers who wish to self-publish, and none of them have met publishable standards.

I've seen first hand how badly self-publishing can go (not me, but someone close). I advice writers serious about the craft to keep improving, aim high, and wait for that traditional publishers contract.