Self-Publishing News: Thanksgiving Week

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:
  • Indie Success: “The Best of All Possible Worlds” by Matia Madrona Query

The week of Thanksgiving, it seems appropriate that we stumbled upon this news in Publisher’s Weekly covering the self-publishing success story of Hugh Howey––an author launched into mainstream fame by the publication of Wool and its sequels starting in 2013. Query writes of his transitions back and forth between the indie method and the traditional publishing pipeline––once his work had already built an audience of fans online and in the first self-published print edition of Wool, his books have been picked up by publishers to re-release using their wide distribution networks. In an interview, Query concludes by asking Howey “Do you anticipate continuing to publish your future books independently?” His response on that question alone is worth reading the entire article:

I’m not sure how I’ll publish my next novel. The joy of self-publishing is that there’s little delay between a finished product and reaching readers. And, as Wool has shown, just because you publish a book on your own doesn’t mean it can’t find a publishing partner later on. The one thing I’ve learned in this business is to think about the reader first and foremost. If you do that, everything else is more likely to fall into place.

– Hugh Howey to Matia Madrona Query in Publisher’s Weekly Online

One of the aspects of self-publishing that we love the most here on Self-Publishing Advisor is its appeal to authors in all sorts of unexpected fields and its utility for all different possible kinds of content: text-heavy works like novels, educational materials, and so on––as well as visual-heavy materials such as zines, cookbooks, and photography portfolios! In this case Doug Allan, widely known for his partnership projects with the legendary Sir David Attenborough (note: for US readers, Attenborough has several spectacular documentaries and series easily accessible by way of several of the big streaming services). Allan’s photos are famous around the world for their quality, and for his ability to get right up in among his subjects. And now, Allan is advocating for self-publishing among his photographer colleagues on Digital Camera World. This is an absolute must-read!


This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is spa-news.jpg
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.

Self-Publishing News: 11.11.2020

Veterans Day. November 11. Honoring All Who Served.

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

Here’s a fun and uplifting story for those fans of epic fantasy: Isaac Stewart, who has worked as art director for fantasy megastar Brandon Sanderson among others, has launched a Kickstarter campaign to launch his lift-the-flap picture book after struggling to find a traditional publisher willing to take on the project. The fundraising campaign for the book, Monsters Don’t Wear Underpants, was fully funded within 12 hours, and has now more than doubled Stewart’s original funding goal. (So nice things can happen on the Internet after all!) At least for now, the book is available for pre-order, and even if you don’t have children going through potty training, you can certainly take notes from Stewart’s well-orchestrated Kickstarter process if you’re thinking about taking a similar path to self-publication.

“As a ghostwriter,” Elaine Pofeldt writes in the opening to a recent Forbes article, “I often hear from prospective authors who would like to write a book but are on the fence about whether to self-publish it or try to find a commercial publisher.” Pofeldt, a longtime contributor to a number of high-profile publications on the subject of entrepreneurship and co-founder of the entrepreneur-boosting company 200kfreelancer.com , offers a well-rounded and realistic comparison of the self-publishing process in contrast to a more traditional (or “commercial”) approach. She covers topics ranging from funding through writing, editing, publishing, and promoting your book––and how each experience varies between the two options. This is a thoughtful article that despite being written by someone “in the industry” will still prove useful to those readers who are not specifically launching their books through her business.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is spa-news.jpg
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.

Self-Publishing News: 9.1.2020

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

Here’s a bit of much-needed good news! The Publishers Weekly staff have released their latest round of self-published titles, which comes out each month. The books released in the month of August included some real standouts, such as Janet R. Macreery’s A Little Noble, in which 13-year-old “Mercy must rely on Calum, a Highland lad, to finish her mission by midsummer. Their journey takes Mercy to places she had never imagined and Calum to the place he vowed never to return to.” Perfect for younger fans of the Outlander series, right? Mercy is something of an expert on plants despite her youth, and between them Calum and Mercy make for a great (and funny) team. And of course don’t neglect the other interesting books on PW’s August list! There are 97 in total to choose from. (So many books, so little time. Our favorite problem of all.)

One could be forgiven for thinking, at first and even second glance, that Jeva Lange of The Week has something of a chip on her shoulder when it comes to self-publishing. And perhaps she does; like almost all articles pertaining to free speech and self-publishing right now, she approaches the medium’s absence of gatekeepers as the death of fact-checking and good grammar. (You probably already know which examples she cites in her article.) But Lange concludes her article with an interesting statement:

It’s true Trump Jr. has fired a shot across the bow of traditional publishers as self-publishing becomes an appealing alternative for conservative writers both financially and politically. But for the imprints that have legitimized falsehoods with their reputable logos for decades, it’s time to say good riddance.

Steering clear of the electoral politics involved in this quote (and the article at large), it’s clear that Lange and others who bemoan the decline of traditional publishing (which we see as a co-evolution, by the way; self-publishing and traditional publishing are not mutually exclusive propositions) are also on another level aware of its benefits. Self-publishing, as we’ve argued before, is a democratizing influence. Instead of editors and publishers and agents deciding upon whose voices get to be heard (on any subject, not just politics), everyone has a chance to speak up and speak out. In a country as fractured and polarized as ours is just now, the thought that there are more voices of all kinds speaking on a given topic ought to be an encouraging one. We aren’t limited to just two options (for or against, either or or) any one idea, despite the careful curation of certain conversations to seem that way by some others. As a market force, self-publishing has opened the floodgates to countless new perspectives on critical issues, including those guaranteed to ratchet up the tension of  dinner table conversations everywhere. And because readers are hungry for more information, and are hungry for more perspectives on topics they care about, self-publishing happens to be a safe place for authors of all kinds to weigh in. We hope that the publishing houses Lange discusses in her article catch on to the benefits of a both/and world as opposed to an either/or. 


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.

Self-Publishing News: 6.9.2020

june

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

Here’s a thought-provoking article to start off your Tuesday. Harshad Marathe, an illustrator, Rachna Kalra, a publicist, R. Ajith Kumar, a typesetter, and Lakshmi Krishnan, an editor: These four industry professionals from the Indian subcontinent put their heads (and their words) together to create a portrait of what it’s like to be working (or not working) during the time of COVID-19. Their experiences vary, of course, in the way that no one’s pandemic experiences are the same. What’s interesting is what they say about self-publishing. Kalra, the publicist, notes that “we must bear in mind that reading is a leisure activity and at the moment the focus is on safety measures and essential items.” This explains to some extent the variability in the market over the last few months as readers binge-buy and then plateau. Krishnan, the editor, has concerns regarding how the rapidity of change may leave many in the traditional publishing industry afloat:

Suddenly, one is faced with taking into account shifts in remunerative patterns of employers. Benefits of work accruing from independent writers eager to make the most of the lockdown and get their manuscripts readied for self-publishing can but to an extent balance the income sourced from the mainstream; palpable anxiety and fear loom large on the horizon.

Past data suggests that self-publishing and traditional publishing can have a symbiotic, supportive relationship, with authors moving back and forth between the two. What happens if the entire structure of traditional publishing gives way at once? This is an issue we’ll be keeping in mind over the coming weeks.

The title really says it all, doesn’t it? Well, save for one thing … the book in question is a self-published book. This article, courtesy of Washington Post’s Jay Greene, covers all the salient details to this still-developing story, in which two of America’s multibillionaire technology giants go head-to-head over a book. Really, the central question is about a monopoly as well as a book: What happens when one company can manage not only a book’s production from start to distribution as well as the distribution of all other publishers’ books? Sure, both traditionally and self-published authors have other routes to distribution–they just aren’t as centralized and convenient to many buyers. And in an age of COVID-19, increasing percentages of the world’s population is turning to Amazon for essentials. No matter what your view on the companies involved, this is one battle of personalities that could have ramifications for almost everyone. We’ll be watching this developing story, as well.


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.

Self-Publishing News: 5.26.2020

And now for the news.

Highlights from this month in the world of self-publishing:

As a part of their series, ‘Publishing and the Pandemic,’ Scroll.in hosted a piece by Siddhartha Gigoo, whose recently published Love in the Time of Quarantine is as winsome as it is earnest. Gigoo began the book as many writers have–as a record of his own experience, given new form and voice and presence by the page. Unlike most authors, however, he set himself what seems an impossible challenge in authorship. As he puts it,

That night I opened a blank Word document and saved it as “Isolation Diary”. I stared at the unmarked page for a long time, wondering what to do with it. After some time, I closed it and went back to reading Homer’s The Odyssey.

I couldn’t go beyond the first stanza:

“Sing to me of the man, Muse, the man of twists and turns, driven time and again off course, once he had plundered the hallowed heights of Troy.”

I kept humming it constantly in my head. Such was the spell cast by its imagery.

21 days

The next day I opened the blank word document again and typed a sentence. I posted a story on Instagram that evening – “Friends, I have decided to write a novel in 21 days.”

Even while he was writing nearly nonstop, Gigoo found time to think through his publishing philosophy and process. He writes, “During my stargazing breaks in the balcony, I wondered what to do with the manuscript after I was done. ‘Should I send it to my agent or pitch it directly to publishers?'” His decision was influenced by the immediacy of self-publishing. His goal? Write a book in 21 days. Publish on the 22nd day.

That’s just not something you can hope to do with a traditional publishing house and process! A fast-tracked manuscript can sometimes scrape by some of the usual delays, but the traditional publishing mechanism usually equates to a wait of eighteen months to two years between submission and publication. That wasn’t going to work for Gigoo. “The nausea of it all!” he exclaims. So he recruited his daughter to design the book cover and his wife to serve as editor and copyeditor, and he sat down to cram eight days a week of work into the usual seven day schedule we all live through. (Even though time now seems liminal and transient.) He made it work, despite last-minute hiccups and obstacles, despite his near-impossible timeline, and even now he celebrates the flexibility and functionality of the self-publishing way. Pondering the weighty reality of mortality, prompted by current events, Gigoo writes that “If at all I am able to finish my next novel, digital publishing will be my first choice. Less baggage is preferable in the current times.”

The perfect end note to our own piece, we find. Please read Gigoo’s entire article at the link, above! It is well worth the time to enjoy his original words in full.


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.