This week in the world of self-publishing:
First off, this little press release put out by Author Solutions on May 18th via PRWeb: the self-professed “world leader in supported self-publishing services” made an announcement last Monday to the effect that “it has entered a development partnership with immersive content studio Legion of Creatives. Through the relationship,” the press release goes on to state, “Legion will actively review indie book titles within the Author Solutions catalogue for possible film, television and digital adaptations.” For fans of Author Solutions this is pleasant news indeed, but the company has its fair share of detractors. Even critics have to admit, however, that the prospects for self-publishing as a whole are broadened by these kinds of pioneering partnerships–in the future, they are likely to not only be available to all self-publishing authors, but to be made much more affordable as the market broadens and competition increases. For the original press release, follow the link!
In this, the first of two articles put up by Publisher’s Weekly on May 20th related to hybrid publishing, contributor Nicole Audrey Spector puts together a comprehensive guide to getting started with hybrid publishing––much as we did with our March 2nd blog post. As Spector puts it, going hybrid is to seize upon a “third option”––an option “which fuses aspects of traditional publishing with self-publishing, often for an up-front fee. At least that’s one definition,” she writes: “as any author exploring the territory of hybrid publishing will find, it’s complicated.” It’s complicated in part because hybrid publishing is not the same thing as being a hybrid author––the former involves a specific publishing model which incorporates the flexibility and authorial rights of self-publishing with the resources of traditional publishing … and the latter is usually used to describe an author who has published through both the traditional and self-publishing models (and may also have dabbled in the hybrid one) or may have moved from one to the other. Spector goes on to describe the workings of various hybrid publishing companies and the experiences of several authors who have used them, and closes with this warning: “Hybrid publishing does have its drawbacks and is assuredly not for everybody.” The “key,” she writes, is “for authors is to do their homework, connect with peers who have published with hybrids, and determine their expectations and goals from the start.” Wise words all around, I should think. You can read the rest of Spector’s guide here.
Brooke Warner contributed the second May 20th piece on hybrid publishing to Publisher’s Weekly, and her interest isn’t in explaining the concept to beginners a la Spector’s piece, but rather to project a forecast for the hybrid publishing market over the coming years (an equally vital task, I think!). Says Warner, founder of hybrid firm She Writes Press, “Within hybrid publishing there exist many creative models, defined largely by what we’re not.” The struggle has been for self-realization and self-definition, and to exist at the center of their own narrative––that is, not on the fringes of the self-publishing vs. traditional publishing catfight. “As more hybrid publishers continue to enter the market,” she argues, “we need to start to define ourselves more by what we are, which requires certain standards to be adopted and certain industry practices to change.” How to go about oding this? Well, Warner has an idea––in the form of a brief manifesto:
Hybrid publishers ought to be meeting the standards of their traditional publishing counterparts—both editorially and in design. Hybrid publishers ought to have traditional distribution, or to find better inroads into the marketplace than currently exist in the self-publishing sector. Hybrid publishers ought to qualify to submit their books to be reviewed traditionally and to enter contests without being barred because of their business models. Their authors ought to qualify to join any professional organization they want without facing the discrimination that currently exists against any author-subsidized model.
Well, that’s a rallying cry if I ever heard one. And with a pedigree like Warner’s to back it up, maybe the various power-players will listen. Even if they don’t, Warner writes, “We’re tapping on industry doors and witnessing some acceptance and some pushback, but, since we’re here to stay, we’ll just let our books do the talking.” Powerful stuff. To read the rest of Warner’s article, click here.
As a self-publishing author, you may find it helpful to stay up-to-date on the trends and news related to the self-publishing industry.This will help you make informed decisions before, during and after the self-publishing process, which will lead to a greater self-publishing experience. To help you stay current on self-publishing topics, simply visit our blog every Monday to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.
ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com.