And now for the news!
Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing, specifically regarding publishing trends within the publishing industry, and their implications for all authors!
This article from Dave Sutton of Business2Community is a study in expectations, met and unmet. It opens with the eye-catching line, “What do 99 cent romance novels and marketing strategies have in common? On Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited program, it’s more than you might think, and it all ties back to profit.” And the article only builds in intensity from there (not bodice-ripping intensity, though, despite its focus on romance-novels). Sutton does not go easy on the self-publishing companies which have, in many ways, enabled the ascendancy of Romance: “This microcosm of the publishing industry is a cutthroat example of what it looks like when profits cloud your view of everything else,” he writes, referring to unethical vanity publishing and self-publishing companies who are willing to milk customers for every last drop of profit. Despite his ambivalence toward self-publishing as a whole, Sutton does tackle important issues, including so-called “book-stuffing” (which we’ve discussed recently here). He also provides some real and positive solutions, including striving for real authenticity rather than just the monetized performance of self. His whole article is interesting, and worth a look!
This article comes to us from The Times of India, by way of the Business Standard, and it tackles some of the broad-brush-strokes, big-picture situation elements of self-publishing that are easy to lose track of when you’re in the midst of it, and grappling with one’s own personal place in the industry. It’s also a portrait of an author who’s making it big in self-publishing, but who hasn’t yet reached “household name” status on this side of the pond: Vineet Bajpai. While we may be more familiar with the trials and travails of American- or British-based self-publishing authors, Bajpai brings a whole different side of the experience to light: what it’s like to self-publish in a country where distribution networks are not available to sell your book. According to the article, Bajpai “could sell his books only via American online retail channels such as Amazon.com (as the India channel did not exist) and BN.com and his titles remained unavailable in India” for much of the earliest part of his publishing career. This made for some disconnect between his ideal audience–which is global, and partially if not significantly rooted in India–and the readers he could actually reach–which were based in highly specific Western countries, like America and Britain. But Bajpai has found a way, and is now seeing success in selling his books. How did he do it? I’ll leave that explanation for this most fascinating article, which we highly recommend you take a look at.
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.