Sunday, October 21, 2007

Self-Publishing Gains Ground

An article on self-publishing and the various options offered by such companies as AuthorHouse, iUnivers, and Xlibris appeared in the October 15, 2007 Publishers Weekly. It's part of a Special Advertising Section, so it isn't without bias, but it is interesting in the way it sheds a light on these companies as providing a service varying from printing and leaving everything else to the writer to offering marketing, distribution, editorial services, cover art, etc. for books that exceed a set minimum for sales. Not much is said about fiction (okay, nothing specific was mentioned), but the value of getting books published this way for local authors and niche books (health and other non-fiction topics) is emphasized. There was also mention that libraries are considering such books. Charlene Rue, a manager in Brooklyn Public Library's materials selection office, is quoted as saying,
"Urban street lit would not have been published by mainstream publishers, but self-published authors found an audience in urban markets."
In a world where do-it-yourself is increasingly a factor -- in photography, in videos, in music, even prose -- the fuzzing of the borders between pro, traditional, and amateur publishing cannot be ignored or marginalized. Because it's not going away.

But I would still want every traditional publisher for my genre to reject me before I'd go that route.

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