Is self -publishing smart?

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Is self -publishing smart?

Post by ladywithglasses » 13 Jan 2017, 17:38

Would you say it is better to self publish or to go through an agency? Does anyone have any experience publishing a book these ways? I would love to read your opinion. Thank you and have a wonderful day!

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Post by KTschirhart » 17 Jan 2017, 18:38

I'm currently looking into writing and publishing my own book, personally I find it more rewarding to have control and a part in every step of the process.

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Post by mewsmash » 21 Jan 2017, 21:45

I'm sure it's highly dependant on the situation. Some people feel inexperienced and want someone else to have control, while others want all the power. Its a matter of preference.

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Post by cluznar » 21 Jan 2017, 21:54

Yes, self publishing is a good way for the new writer to start out. Instead of spending a year trying to get a publisher to pick you up, only to find out none will. With self publishing you can pretty much do as you would with a publisher. But you pay for it. I self published my first book with Outskirts Press and they are great to work with. They have editing available, also marketing. There are also many self publishers available. Each author must look them over and decide which fits their need. But at least with a self publisher you can get your book out there in front of people.

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Post by ladywithglasses » 22 Jan 2017, 00:02

Thank you all for the insight! I really appreciate it!!!

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Post by mewsmash » 22 Jan 2017, 07:43

You are very welcome! I'm an aspiring author myself, so this was helpful for me, as well.

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Post by Scott » 22 Jan 2017, 15:16

Great question! :) In my opinion...

Self-publishing is fine if it is done right. Unfortunately, I'd estimate that more than 99% of self-publishing authors cut corners and don't invest enough time and/or funds into it. They might be great writers, but you need to be a great writer AND a great publisher to self-publish correctly.

There is a reason legit publishers turn down most authors asking to be published; it's because publishing is such a huge, expensive, and time-consuming investment.
"That virtue we appreciate is as much ours as another's. We see so much only as we possess." - Henry David Thoreau

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Post by cluznar » 22 Jan 2017, 16:27

You need to not only self publish, you need to edit and market. Even if the self publisher does marketing you need to do some marketing also.

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Post by Marcus Nannini » 20 Feb 2017, 14:10

It can be very smart. Think about the countless hours spent preparing query letters then tailoring them to fit a particular agent. Of course that implies spending adequate time to learn what a specific agent is truly seeking.

Take it from me (if you like) when I say what an agent might post on a agent-list-type of a website and what she or he really wants generally do not match up. I will take that one further and state even when you believe you know what he/she is seeking in a book, you better look at the books they have published in the last couple of years. Typically they do not match up with what you would have expected.

So, sure, send out a few dozen well-drafted queries while simultaneously seeking the best self-publisher for you. And remember, you will need to have an editor if you self-publish as they are worth their weight in dimes.

Further, if you self-publish, have a game plan and stick to it every single day of the week. Get a basic website, and a blog too. Expand your friends on social media. And create a journal for yourself in which you enter what you do every day...this creates a reference for where you have been, where you need to follow up and avoids needless duplication.

Remember J.K. Rowling was rejected more than 700 times. Today, instead of spending all those hours in vain, she would likely choose to self-publish. But if you do so, have a realistic budget for your marketing campaign and give it an honest chance to succeed.

Finally, get involved in local author clubs. Check MeetUp for one near you.

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Post by cluznar » 20 Feb 2017, 15:46

I agree, most people would never be picked up by an agent or publisher. So self-publish and allow your work to be read by people. J. K. Rowling is a good example of many rejections. So self-publish and see how well your work sells.

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Post by Renee24 » 21 Feb 2017, 13:00

I"m writing a novel too, and been reading a lot of books about this topic. They say first time writers can't get into the door, so how do you get in the door, unless you self publish? I think they said something about a platform too, so you need to be out there with a blog and such. What about the new Amazon Kindle publishing, that is free, and might be a good way to at least get your foot in the door, so to speak? Then you can work on your next novel and find ways of getting yourself noticed.
Good luck!
Renee

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Post by shootseven » 07 Mar 2017, 11:53

I would strongly recommend finding an agent or traditional publisher, unless your book is geared toward a very niche market, or you have a big following from other books. Don't let ego (ie, I want to control every aspect) get in your way of doing what is best for your book. Publishers can open up many doors (for one thing, with reviewers who might not touch self-published books).

I couldn't be more grateful to all the publishers of my first two books have done for me. Now, in those cases, they were history books, so that might be a little different than your situation, since just having an academic publisher adds credibility in those cases. Just a little of what my publisher did: Peer review before accepting the manuscript, which did help improve both books, advertising and opening doors in both markets and with reviewers, very aggressive library sales (my first book is in 1016 libraries world-wide).

My first novel is with a small publisher, which means I'll have to take on a lot of the marketing. But again, they were great to work with with the cover and editing, and they are opening some doors, but I'm too early in the process to judge the current experience (the book just came out a week ago).

Hope this helps.

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Post by shootseven » 07 Mar 2017, 12:00

Renee24 wrote:I"m writing a novel too, and been reading a lot of books about this topic. They say first time writers can't get into the door, so how do you get in the door, unless you self publish?
I should have added this to my last post, but here goes: this is completely a myth. I had never had anything published before my first book, which I landed with a very well respected publisher in the field. I had never had fiction published before my most recent book, and while getting a publisher was a little more difficult (and I never did find an agent to work with), that had more to do with the material (they were a little hesitant on taking on something with five first person POVs) than opportunity. I have never had trouble getting agents or publishers to read my work, and if they're willing to spend their time reading your work, they're going to consider it.

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Post by CianaStone » 09 Mar 2017, 19:59

I think it depends on the individual. I started with a publisher and didn't like having someone tell me they'd prefer I change my plot to something "they" would like better. Since it wasn't "their" story, that bothered me and so I am happier being an indie author. I still value my editor and listen to her advice but now I control my story.

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Post by Lincoln » 15 Mar 2017, 14:43

KTschirhart wrote:I'm currently looking into writing and publishing my own book, personally I find it more rewarding to have control and a part in every step of the process.
I agree with this 100%. It is worth having control. I have a book published through Kindle Press and then books on Amazon through self-publishing, and I love being able to change things myself!
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