Self-Publishing News: 4.16.2019

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And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing!

Some of the best literature comes from places that the average American reader might not know about, and we write about these places frequently here on Self Publishing Advisor: India, Britain, and this week, Australia. In this week’s West Australian, Jackson Lavell-Lee writes to promote an upcoming event at Barefoot Books Busselton, which according to Lavell-Lee “will host a book self-publishing event on Sunday at 2pm in conjunction with independent publishing company Book Reality.” Lavell-Lee goes on to interview Book Reality’s director and a number of authors who have self-published through Book Reality, giving this article an especially personal touch.

In other fascinating self-publishing news for the week, UK bookselling juggernaut Waterstones is dealing with a landmark case after a petition featuring over 9000 signatures was delivered asking the bookstore to give its employees a living wage. How does this relate to self-publishing? According to the article from Books + Publishing, “Campaign organisers also planned to present Daunt with a self-published book called Working at Waterstones, which includes anonymous testimonies from staff about their experiences of living on a low wage.” It says a lot about at least specific value of self-publishing that is has provided a platform for necessary anonymous publications and therefore the voices of those whose jobs are on the line, whether or not their names are attached to this petition. If they don’t file a petition, their jobs may prove unsustainable in paying basic bills. If they do file a petition and get called out for it, they may be let go on any number of technicalities. Thank goodness for self-publishing, eh? Speaking truth to power is one of its strong suits.


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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 each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 4.9.2019

the word "april" from the wooden letters

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing!

One of the most rewarding trends to emerge from recent years is that of collaborations and partnerships, specifically those between libraries and self-publishing authors and companies. A recent panel at the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (#AWP19) conference by the Multnomah County Library covered their Library Writers Project, whereby local (to the Portland area) authors are able to submit their ebooks for availability to library patrons. The Library Writers Project has proven so popular indeed that these authors have seen the readership of their books skyrocket, and three have even been selected for print publication by a local press working in partnership with the library to ensure that the process benefited everyone, authors and library and press alike. In that same spirit, Kelsey Oldham covers booksellers in Australia and New Zealand stocking self-published books. The article is hidden behind a paywall, so only Books + Publishing subscribers will be able to access all of the juicy details. But watch for more of these fruitful partnerships to form in the future!

As a part of its ongoing “Read Harder” campaign, Book Riot contributor Sarah Nicolas recently put together a list of nine self-published books that “encompass romance, mystery, young adult, nonfiction, women’s fiction, steampunk, fantasy, and more” and shared them with this major book reviewing and recommendation platform’s followers. They are each wildly unique, and reached their current place by way of unique publishing methods and platforms, and in so doing they exemplify the best of self-publishing overall: that it is a uniquely democratic space, and a space that fosters truly unique and varied works that are maybe just doing something a bit too uniquely for mainstream publishers to bite—or provide a space for authors who aren’t and never have been interested in walking the traditional publishing path. It’s truly exciting to see Book Riot, a titan of the book world, embrace us so actively.

How the rise of the self-publishing industry contributed to the problems for Baltimore’s mayor

Look, everybody needs a dollop of realpolitik on their news website every now and then, and here’s your yearly dose for self-publishing realpolitik: even a good tool can be put to bad ends when deliberately misused. Writes Mary Carole McCauley of The Baltimore Sun: “It could be argued that the self-publishing phenomenon played a key role in the premature departure of Baltimore’s mayor.” Which is to say, while McCauley does not always paint a flattering picture of self-publishing, even she must admit that the real problem behind the premature resignation of Baltimore’s mayor was not the rise of self-publishing, but the rise of individuals who can find a way to turn even a beautiful thing into a power struggle.


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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 each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 4.2.2019

the word "april" from the wooden letters

And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing!

This week, we have two big how-to articles from two big media sources that normally don’t spend a lot of time thinking or publishing content related to self-publishing. The first comes from Barbara Krasnoff of The Verge, who writes to cover the “new technologies [which have] appeared and revolutionized the industry”—that is, this new industry that you and I find ourselves a part of: self-publishing, also often referred to as indie publishing. Krasnoff begins by tracing the history of self-publishing—something we have probably often already read about, if not on The Verge—before touching base with a number of authors who have pursued self-publication and delving into the how-to section. Krasnoff concludes:

In short, the process of publishing your own book can be both very simple and very complex. The actual mechanics of publishing an ebook, or even a print book, has become relatively easy, especially if you give yourself to the Amazon ecosystem. However, doing it well — and gaining a following of readers who will enjoy and buy your books — is not as easy. It takes trial and error, patience, and work. But if you’re a writer, and you want people to read your books, it’s certainly worth it.

Overall, Krasnoff’s approach is both nuanced and richly complex, drawing as it does on the real and lived experiences of authors with experience in the field. A worthy read!

Equally as unexpected—and equally as delightful—is this article from Kelley O’Brien of Women, whose article proves to be exactly what its title implies: a getting-started guide for authors looking to break into romance, including by way of self-publication. She opens her section on self-publishing by writing:

Every romance fan knows that Amazon is filled with self-published romance authors, some of whom are as popular, if not more popular, than traditionally published authors. It’s necessary to preface that self-publishing isn’t for everyone. It’s a ton of work. You’ll have to handle everything an agent or publisher would normally take care of, such as book promotion. You also won’t have the support of an agent or publisher.

It can also be very rewarding. Self-publishing, by far, gives you the most control over your work. You always retain the rights to your books. You get to set your own deadlines and won’t have to wait months or longer for your book to start bringing in money.

While she also touches on traditional publishing methods, O’Brien makes sure that authors interested in going indie have a solid foundation and a good place to start the process.


spa-news

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 each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 3.26.2019

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And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing!

The Good E-Reader is back with more excellence, this time with a piece by contributor Michael Kozlowski on exciting developments in the world of manga—a visual art form most often described as the print version of anime—and the opening of a new self-publishing platform for that genre. As with any other new development in indie and self-publishing—whether or not it relates to a genre or field we personally read—the mere fact that more options are opening up for creators and readers in a genre and field parallel to our own is exciting, indeed. We’re excited to see what comes from VIZ Originals latest project!

Speaking of fascinating developments in the vein of “modes/genres/fields I didn’t know could take part in self-publishing but definitely are“, the latest news from Michael Futter of Variety relates to developments in the videogame industry, one which has long been the subject of conversation around alternate, indie, and self-published games—and how difficult it can be for a new studio or development company to “break in” against the kind of competition that churns out all of the PS3 and XBox games you may already be familiar with. Crowdfunding, which involves requesting many small promises of financial support from thousands of supporters before distribution can happen, may just be the way of the future. Crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter and GoFundMe have now been around for long enough that the mere act of crowdfunding has evolved since its early days—and Futter is here with the details in an engaging and delightfully voicy piece that updates us all on where things are now.

It’s something of an open secret that people are really, really good at policing each others’ definitions. Luckily, Dave Armstrong of Patheos manages to steer clear of many of the policing stumbling blocks one might fall over in attempting to understand the self-publishing experience in the context of its stigma—and comparisons to the traditional publishing model—by framing his piece through an interview with Karl Keating, another successful author. Speaking of “voicy” articles, Armstrong’s is a pleasure to read, rich with humor and also with the kind of spicy—and highly useful—details that may just provide a self-publishing author new to the market figure out some of the process, including how to price e-books and how to select a platform that works for you instead of restricting you from doing what you really want to do, and how to craft covers that you wouldn’t mind readers judging the book by. All in all, it’s a great little introduction to the act of self-publishing, and also includes details that may be of use to authors writing in the genre of religious and Christian literature. Be prepared to learn about Amazon sales rankings!


spa-news

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 each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 3.19.2019

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And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing!

“As dramatic technology shifts continue, book publishers,” writes Barbara Pellow of Printing Impressions, “authors and printers need to adapt to benefit from new opportunities.” Reporting from a a recent Book Business Webinar, Pellow describes her experiences interviewing three key players in the indie book world: David Walter, Executive Director of Client Development at the NDP Group, Inc., Brian O’Leary, Executive Director for the Book Industry Study Group (BISG), and Angela Bole, CEO for the Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA). They discussed current trends in books emerging in 2019, as well as some constructive decisions booksellers, authors, and industry experts can all make in order to take advantage—and thrive in an ever-more-complicated market. What’s the bottom line? Writes Pellow, “The challenge for the industry is to capitalize on new business models and to re-engineer processes and workflows for a digital business, even while supporting their traditional print business”: a lesson we can all learn from.

We haven’t, overall, spent much time on the Columbus Dispatch website, but this week that all changed with the paper’s coverage of Delana Jensen Close’s forays into self-publishing. With a byline by Kevin Stankiewicz, the Dispatch unpacked Close’s story, beginning with two compelling opening lines:

In 1955, Delana Jensen Close began to write a book.

It’s finished now; it just took 63 years.

Close was 95 last year when she finished her first book, The Rock House, and her family set about publishing the 806-page tome through Amazon. The book, writes Stankiewicz, covers a lot of ground:

Set in the early 20th century, “The Rock House” follows the life of Abigail Langley, who is maligned in her tiny religious town after having a baby out of wedlock with the son of a wealthy, well-connected man. The son, Adam Townsend, heads east for medical school before Abigail can tell him she is pregnant.

The rest, as they say, is historical fiction of high caliber. And while the book itself sounds fascinating, we’re above all fascinated by the story of its 63-year development, as well as with the woman behind the book: 96-year-old Delana Jensen Close, an inspiration to us all.


spa-news

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 each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 3.12.2019

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And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing!

In news that will delight indie music lovers, SPIN contributor Maggie Serota is spreading the word about singer-songwriter Lana Del Rey ‘s latest venture: a poetry collection that the indie sensation is more or less giving away for (almost) free. Del Rey, whose online fans and followers are legion, is determined to boost the work of local indies by delivering boxes of her finished books personally. Writes Serota, “Del Rey fans who live outside of California can read Del Rey’s poetry for free on her Instagram page, but the hand-bound volume of her writing does seem like a nice collectors’ item.” We’ll be watching her progress closely to see how this musician, who has managed to build a platform in the most unlikeliest and yet most earnest and winsome of ways, lends the self-publishing and self-promotion process her personal touch.

In yet another stellar piece for Forbes, Adam Rowe writes to update the magazine’s loyal readers on what’s happening int he indie book scene … at least from the perspective of one person somewhat central to the movement: publishing startup Reedsy’s co-founder and CEO, Emmanuel Nataf. Rowe’s interview with Nataf is enlightening, with the Reedsy CEO unpacking three of what he considers to be the biggest trends to watch over the remainder of 2019: the rise of “escapist fiction” (in Nataf’s words; more colloquially these are referred to as works of speculative fiction, science fiction and fantasy, romance, and other popular or genre fictions); the continued ascent of young adult (or “YA”) fiction as a major force in the book market as the digital natives who make up a significant percentage of its readership settle into adulthood and a market force of their own; and the maturation of nonfiction and memoir as a category. We think these are some interesting premises, and are looking forward to seeing whether Nataf’s predictions come true.

Last but not least, another update from Forbes, this time from contributor Elaine Pofeldt, who lasers in on more big news from Reedsy—the launch of another platform for book recommendations and discovery, aptly titled “Reedsy Discovery.” As with Goodreads and Amazon recommendations, as well as paid services such as Book Riot’s “TBR” (standing for “Tailored Book Recommendations”), Reedsy Discovery is aimed at boosting the visibility of books that might otherwise slip under the raider, including (and perhaps even especially) indie and self-published titles. We’ll continue to track the progress of Reedsy’s new offering to see how it manages to compete in a crowded marketplace.


spa-news

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 each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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Self-Publishing News: 2.26.2019

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And now for the news!

Some highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing!

Forbes has well and truly been showing up for those amongst its readership who are self-publishing authors lately, and Amy Morin’s recent piece is yet another example of this excellent representation. Morin, whose website describes her as “a psychotherapist turned ‘accidental’ author,” knows the stakes when it comes to building a brand and crafting resources for others, including books. Morin has traditionally published three books domestically to date, but she understands the value to self-published works as well. In fact, her fifth “way” in this article is to publish a book in the manner most suited to your individual circumstance. Writes Morin:

While some people insist a self-published book is the way to go, others say traditional publishing is more profitable. But, publishing isn’t a one-size-fits-all. It depends on your topic.

If you have (a) small niche market, you may need to self-publish. Then, it’s up to you to decide whether to create a $50 manual or a $l.99 eBook.

She also advocates for traditional publication in other circumstances, but it’s heart-warming to see even this traditionally published author showing up for and advocating for self-publishing.

Good e-Reader is another news platform that has routinely showed up for self-publishing authors, and this week’s article by Mercy Pilkington demonstrates their continued support for authors seeking another way. Pilkington opens by describing just how far self-publishing has come, from origins shrouded in stigma and production difficulties to high-quality works offering diverse opportunities for diverse authors. Pilkington’s article is especially concerned with those authors who self-publish with the goal of having their self-published title or future works picked up for traditional publication. She touches on a recent blog post by powerhouse literary agent Anne Tibbets, who warns authors that already-self-published works are not the best candidates for making that transition, and offers this advice to authors wanting to make the leap from self-published to traditional publication:

Tibbets does offer some advice for seeking a traditional publishing deal, but there’s bad news: the advice itself isn’t new. “Write a whole new book that’s completely unrelated to anything you’ve self published, that’s unsold anywhere, unpublished anyplace (even online), and fits into the traditional publishing categories, sub-genres, and word count requirements, and query agents with that novel.”

We might put it another way: If you’ve successfully self-published a book already, the incentive to republish your book traditionally is marginal (you’re already making bank, and a traditional publisher will cut into your profits). Most people who are self-publishing these days are choosing to do so because self-publishing is the only or the best fit for their book anyway. There are plenty of reasons to self-publish, including the narrow selection parameters traditional publishers employ when picking manuscripts which exclude many high-quality works worth reading. And readers know this! One glance at the comments might well indicate that there’s still some negative opinions floating around in the ether, but a second glance will show that there are readers and commenters going to bat for self-publishing, as well:

comments

As in all things, don’t let the haters get you down! Listen to those who know the value to your dreams.


spa-news

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 each month to find out the hottest news. If you have other big news to share, please comment below.

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