The Global Warming of Self-Publishing

14 09 2012

Decoding the Self-Published Author

Every author knows that producing a book requires an extreme act of concentration, discipline, organization and stamina. It is an achievement requiring enormous effort, time and isolation rarely matched by other forms of artistic creation.

Despite all the revolutionary changes that roil the publishing industry and are currently upending the old methods of presenting books to the public, the bedrock fact remains that a published book, whether presented on paper or on screen, still carries with it a measure of prestige and achievement.

Despite the difficulties involved in a book’s creation, there is no shortage of people determined to produce works that reflect their own vision, whether they are motivated by chasing the false gods of fame and fortune or simply satisfying their overwhelming need to be heard and their views, talents and interests projected beyond the confines of their own minds and imagination. There are perhaps millions of people worldwide currently bent over their desks composing works they hope to share with others.

A few short years ago, the pipeline for these endeavors was strictly regulated by time-honored methods of filtering. A band of business-minded publishers, fed by a gaggle of first look agents, would submit choices to publishing houses whose editors and marketers filtered out their own choices. These choices were then cataloged seasonally, and an army of salespeople was dispatched to book buyers of independent and chain stores who subsequently made their own choices based upon past sales, and perhaps a few gut choices of their own.

The road to marketing and publicity channels was well rutted. Mass media outlets had their own filtering process to determine which books they would feature in their review columns, and advertising sections of books were well established. A few well-respected critics could be relied upon to filter their own choices to public scrutiny.

Continue reading @ Huffington Post

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