May 20, 2011

Why I decided to go independent

     Though it's literally taken me months to make a decision on publishing, I've made a final conclusion. There are several main factors that led me to self publishing:

1. The most important to me was the concept of artistic freedom
- Traditional publishing leaves little room for that. In the end, the author has little to no say in what stays in the ms, what the cover looks like, and how they market it. Those are all things I want to be a part of. This is my first finished novel, after all.

2. Price really influenced my decision
- Was I worried about profit? No, not at all. I was more concerned that the prices set by trad. publishers would keep this book out of my readers reach. Every penny made from this title will be recycled into marketing, so I don't care about making money. I just want someone who looks at the cover and wants to read it to be able to walk away with it and not have to worry about the cost. 

3. Time is of the essence
-Though I'm not the type to get in a hurry about anything, you can bank on the course of traditional publishing taking years. While I do have the patience to stick it out and go that route, I have acquaintances who want to read this book NOW. When I pass people I know in the grocery store, I get the same question. "When will I be able to get my hands on your book?" I don't want to have to tell these people who are supporting me that they're going to have to wait a few years. Give the people what they want. 

4. Marketing 
Let's be honest. I know who has my best interest in mind. It isn't an agent, or a publisher, or any other middle man in the world of literature. No, they all have their own agendas. The only one whose sincere interest lies with getting this book where it needs to be is me. The real cause for this being weighed into my decision was a book reviewer. At one time, I followed a certain reviewer right here on blogspot. I recently read one of *this person's reviews that was filled with such vulgar language that I made my first "unfollow" ever. While anyone can post a review, and I will encourage any who are interested, I want to be able to decide the kind of people and websites and advertising that are associated with my work. 

5. The concept of success
Thankfully, I'm not the kind of person who judges their success based on number of sales on a chart. If one single person reads this book and enjoys it, I've accomplished what I set out to do. With a publisher, I wouldn't get the sweet ambiance of reveling in my success. Unfortunately, I would be squealing with delight over one happy reader while the publisher would be telling me, "It's not enough." I have a great deal of respect for every bestseller that's ever been. They sell that many for a reason. My way of thinking still leads me to believe that just one really is enough. 

It simply falls into place with my lifestyle. It will fit on the shelf right beside my home improvement hobbies, my gardening, my painting, my coupon shopping, and every project I like to undertake because I see something that I'd like to buy, but I can make it myself, have fun with it, and spend half as much. 

Some people see independent publishing as the easy way out, but I see it as the opposite. It's also more logical to me. I could spend months writing query letters, a different length of synopsis, gaining more credentials, etc. on the hopes that it would someday be worth it. I don't like working on the basis of hope. I like working with a plan (like the detailed business plan I've drawn up) and with a purpose. I can watch the results and adjust accordingly. I would much rather put my time into a potential reader than a potential agent. 'Nuff said. 


  1. Good for you for having made the self-publishing decision. I don't believe that option will work for my upcoming book as I ned to have it marketed globally, but it sounds like it's a good solution for you.

    We had a terrific discussion on my blog recently about self-publishing options. You may wish to check it out here:

    And I welcome you to join the "tribe!" The water cooler is always surrounded by writers and literary enthusiasts from various backgrounds.

  2. Congratulations! I made the same decision as you recently, and even though I'm just getting started and there's still a lot of work to do, I feel a huge sense of relief that I still get to control everything. It's really important.