Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

Traditional VS Self Publishing ~ Some Thoughts…


self and traditional publishing I read a post last night on Isabella Louise Anderson’s blog. It was about the fortitude it takes to get through many rejections to finally see a book accepted for publishing.

My book was self-published on the 16th of May, 2011.

I still found Isabella’s post (and its comments) interesting because I’m not the kind of self-publishing author to automatically disparage traditional publishing.

In fact, I think both methods of publishing have their pros and cons.

Some Traditional Pros:

National or International marketing help.

Recognition by peers.

Acceptance in the marketplace.

Some Traditional Cons:

Huge effort to have book accepted.

Pressure from editors on book’s content.

No guarantees of ultimate success.

Some Self-Publishing Pros:

No restrictions on content.

No editorial pressure.

No struggle to have book accepted for publishing.

Some Self-Publishing Cons:

Responsibility for every bit of promotion and marketing.

Less acceptance by peers (though this seems to be swiftly changing).

No guarantees of ultimate success.

It could seem like a lesser of two evils choice, but those were only Some of the differences.

My major determinants for choosing self-publishing were that I knew my book had an extremely slim chance of being accepted by any traditional publishers and I’m old enough to realize that, even if it got accepted, I might die before the book’s launch.

What are your opinions, experiences, or knowledge of these two seemingly contending methods of publishing?
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11 responses to “Traditional VS Self Publishing ~ Some Thoughts…

  1. Karla Telega April 14, 2011 at 8:09 pm

    I don’t know how true it is, but rumor is that traditional publishers will be less likely to consider you if you’ve already self-published. I must also admit that there’s something about the status of traditional publishing that appeals to my ego. I’m shopping my mystery around now, seeing if I get any bites before I make my decision.

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  2. Simone Benedict April 14, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    I’ve only gone the traditional route. Over the years, I’ve done some promoting for self-published writers who I believed in. Back then I couldn’t have put in the work like they had to. I’m still not sure I could. I give you a lot of credit my friend!

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    • Alexander M Zoltai April 14, 2011 at 10:35 pm

      Credit? Hmmm…

      It’s kinda like I really have no choice if I want people to read the book; plus, since I’m on a pension, I do have all the time I need (though, I could use another 24 hours in each day), and the book is driving me to persist, through whatever it takes to give it a fair space in the market :-)

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  3. Jaleta Clegg April 14, 2011 at 9:50 pm

    The biggest difference I’ve found is in editing. When you get published through a publisher, they pay the editor. The editor has no reason to say only what the author wants to hear because the author is not the one holding the purse strings. In self-publishing, the author is the one paying the editor. The editor is not going to tell the author something that will upset them. I’ve heard this from free-lance editor friends as well as from publishers that some authors are very difficult to work with. They don’t want anyone to tell them their manuscript is not perfect. A good editor points out problems with the story, characters, and writing. A good author listens, no matter who is footing the bill for editing.

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    • Alexander M Zoltai April 14, 2011 at 10:38 pm

      I guess I was damned lucky then to find the editor I have, Jaleta.

      She wasn’t working for pay (just an acknowledgement in the book), and she liked the book; but, she was also willing to tell me exactly what she thought…

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