And now for the news!
This week in the world of self-publishing:
“Professional photographer Alice Mabin is a woman not afraid to have a go in life,” writes Jennette Lees in her September 2nd article for the Cootamundra Herald, a paper which covers the Cootamundra District in New South Wales, Australia. Says Lees, New Zealand born Mabin, 29, “always knew she wanted a career on the land,” and indeed spent “her early working life traipsing around high country stations in New Zealand mustering sheep, cattle, and deer, before packing up her life, including her dogs, in 2007 and moving to the vast, flat, drought-stricken planes of Hay, to experience farming the Australian way.” She even took part in the 2013 Brinkworth cattle drive, the longest cattle drive in over 100 years of Australian history, walking roughly eighteen thousand head of cattle “from central Queensland to Hay,” a journey of 2000 kilometers (1240+ miles).
2000 kilometers, for comparison, is roughly the distance from Dusseldorf to Skopje, and from New York to Miami. You can imagine that walking that far might lend itself to some interesting photography, and Mabin made good on that opportunity. Writes Lees, Mabin “went along for a day to take photographs and ended up joining the crew for the entire five-month trip. She finished with beautiful, scenic images capturing a side of Australian life few have the opportunity to experience.” After putting her images together as a book, and struggling to find a publisher, Mabin self-published The Drover and printed just a thousand copies. To date, reports Lees, “21,000 copies of the book have been sold with another reprint on the horizon.” To learn more about Mabin’s fascinating work and the story of her self-publishing experience, follow the link!
Some weeks ago–back in May, in fact–we reported on Rana Ayyub’s rough journey to self-publication, and this week we are happy to offer a wonderful follow up. As Priya Ramani writes for Live Mint in this September 2nd article, “All the angst fades when you’re the country’s latest self-publishing sensation who has, pretty much single-handedly, managed to sell 32,000 copies of a book nobody would touch. It also feels nice to be on the verge of paying back the Rs.5 lakh bank loan you took to do this.” Says Ramani, “It’s great when the country’s biggest English language book distributor takes you on board because they know it makes commercial sense, political affiliations be damned.” Ayyub, who published the highly controversial Gujarat Files: Anatomy Of A Cover Up earlier this year, has faced everything from being ignored to accusations of being a jihadi Muslim radical. It doesn’t hurt that Ramani herself is clearly impressed with Ayyub’s work; as Ramani puts it, “the then 26-year-old reporter who went undercover as film-maker Maithili Tyagi for eight months in 2011 to investigate the riots, custody killings and 2003 murder of Gujarat home minister Haren Pandya. The investigation, originally commissioned by news magazine Tehelka, was never published. Several years later, Ayyub has self-published it as The Gujarat Files. It takes a single-minded madness to do what she did.” Single-minded madness aside, Ayyub has become something of a self-publishing sensation in addition to a political force for transparency, advocacy, and the ethical treatment of others. For the full report, click here.
Emma Bryson has some strong words for the publishing community. In her latest (September 1st) article for New Zealand’s premier Booksellers magazine, Bryson bemoans the fact that romance authors and publishers “inspire a bare minimum of mainstream media attention, aside from the odd condescending ‘human interest’ story. But the slight of romance rides further than this still, with traditionally little to no coverage in national or even local bookish circles.” Says Bryson, “I’m beginning to think that the somewhat toxic relationship between the wider publishing world and romance needs to be re-negotiated. Not for our sake, but for yours.” How ‘yours’? The genre “transcends most of those traditional mainstream publishing concerns,” she writes, and this is good for everyone: “Multinational vs indie? No problem, you can make a career out of either, or both. Traditional vs self-publishing? Both can be lucrative options for romance writers. Print vs digital? Hey, same there.” The complicated relationship between Romance and Feminism bears further study, too, according to Bryson. But when push comes to shove, it’s Romance’s very transgressiveness–its ability to cross lines because no one is looking–that makes it home for innovation and success. Its authors are “freed to explore those cutting-edge avenues that traditional publishers still scoff at,” write Bryson–and this is ultimately good news for everyone. For the rest of Bryson’s article, follow the link..
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.