E-Pub/Self-Publishing

Being an aspiring author, I belong to a lot of email loops. Lately, I’ve been seeing announcements left and right about “I just signed with X publisher” and/or “My novel X is now available through Kindle edition”, indicating self-publishing. It’s frustrating, seeing so many people succeed as I labor away, and raises all the typical self-doubts: am I good enough, maybe I should try writing something else, et cetera. There is no doubt, as many many bloggers, agents and publishers have all said, the times are changing thanks to the e-publishing industry. More people are getting published today than ever before, and whether it’s a detriment to the industry or not remains to be seen.

Last year, I got offers from two different e-publishers regarding my beloved Blood Rage. Yes, that’s still got a special place in my heart after all this time. As those who’ve followed me since back then know, I ultimately turned them down because I didn’t think it was the right move for me at that time. I’d submitted thinking that that was what I wanted then, but later after much introspection, I reconsidered what I wanted.  It seemed to make sense, since I really believed in my Blood saga (I still do), and once a publisher dealt with one book, another wouldn’t want to pick up the series partway through. The payout on e-pubs (at least the one in particular that I was more inclined to sign with) was incredibly low.

Writing isn’t about just about the money. Despite my hubby’s grand ideas about being able to quit working because I’ll bring in enough with writing once I ‘succeed’ (I’ll wait while those who know how unlikely that is finish laughing), I know it’s unlikely I’ll ever be able to quit my day job. Besides, the fringe benefits (health insurance) aren’t really available without a day job. Signing with the e-pub would have gotten me experience in getting published, working with an editor and so forth.

I just keep wondering – did I make a mistake saying no? I wanted an agent/the big 6 publisher of course. Was I being arrogant, thinking I could make it by being more patient and looking ahead. An agent who is no longer in the industry and I exchanged a few emails on the topic (not specifically my situation), and I was at peace with the decision, in part thanks to her thoughts.

My husband has said he wishes I’d accepted the offer since it seems like nothing’s happening as far as getting an agent/another offer.

With the current WIP, it seems to be a good thing I didn’t since it reimagines some of the events in Rage (dialogue has shifted a little, primarily, though timelines might need to be reworked).

Those of you out there who have not been published – what would you do, if you got an offer from a small e-pub – take it an run immediately? Or if you’ve gone the self-pub route, why did you choose that instead of continuing to reach for New York/an agent?

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3 Comments

  1. Okay, so I know you addressed your question to authors who haven't been pubbed, but I'd still like to weigh in on this, if that's okay. I ALSO received offers from small presses for a project, and I ALSO turned them down. And I almost vomited each time, because what if I'd made the wrong decision??? In the end, it wasn't what I wanted. I wanted one of the big 6. My husband also wanted millions of dollars and a mustang. 😉 If it's what you really want, then go for it. But it might just be with a different project. Like mine was. I wrote for the market to get my foot in the door, and that's exactly what I did. At the time, I was a snob about self-publishing. I'm not anymore. AT ALL. Have you read John Locke's book HOW I SOLD A MILLION EBOOKS IN FIVE MONTHS ? You should. You really, really should. It changed my views about everything. Even traditionally pubbed authors are self-pubbing their backlists, and works which don't quite fit into any one genre, but they love them any way. And these books are selling. Just thought I'd put that on the table.

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  2. I'm not saying don't try for the big 6. Absolutely keep that as your goal! I'm just saying, if you really love your work, and you think others will too, why not self pub it? You can always write something else for the big bad 6. :)Self pubbing isn't viewed as taboo any more. Seriously.

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  3. Hey, thanks for answering, Anna. I was trying to aim it at the non-pubbed/e-pubbed b/c the article was talking about them. I greatly appreciate you dropping in and commenting! I remember when you made the announcement for your own publishing thing.Self-pub, not for me because I'm nowhere near a good enough editor to catch/fix everything, nor do I really have the finances to commit to a paid editor. If I were to self-pub, the reading public would deserve that much.

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