Somehting to think about . . .

Hunger and the fear of failure . . . when you hit the wall, the only way left is up.

~Lorelei Bell

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The New Age

When I began writing, believe me, you were at the mercy of publishers--no mater what you attempted to write and then get published, short stories, poems, articles, or novels.

Of course, back then, there were "vanity" presses, which were exactly that. You gave them your manuscript and they would tell you how wonderful it was, and as long as you paid them $XXX., you would find your words between the covers of a physical book--and then be stuck with all the copies and you had to peddle them off yourself. It never would see light of day, otherwise.

Some people were able to earn their money back. Many, no.

I had sworn to never do this. I felt it was cheating the system. But then I turned 50. With no published book in existence, I felt enough was enough. I was sick of being rejected. I had no idea why I was rejected (because their writing "not for us" in the margins of the rejection slip is not enough of explanation for anyone!).

I looked around for a P.O.D. publisher that would not take my life savings. Just a portion of it. I believed in my work, and felt that I could garner sales if I got enough friends to buy it and get a book signing or two. My husband was behind me 110%. He wanted to see me published too. My work would be on Amazon, as well as other places from this new Print-On-Demand publishing, I felt that their contract was honest, and fool proof. And it was. I had full rights to the book I chose to publish.

That was in 2008. Today if you are able to figure out the formatting to self-publish at Amazon and so forth, and have the patients you can self-publish. I've decided to go this route with the book I sent to this publisher and have taken it out of their hands, and into mine. I intend on making edits first and then publish it as an e-book to bring the price way down. Let's face it. People are buying ebooks more because first the price difference is incredibly cheap. My original book, Spell of the Black Unicorn was put at $18.95. I had no control over how much they would price it at. I felt even at that time it was expensive. But I did manage to barely make back the $499. I paid to have this book available.

Just this past week, I thought I would try and get a short story published. First of all, I had sent it into an anthology. It was a late entry, and probably had no chance of getting published. They had to reject many, they said. In the past the rejection would have devastated me. I wrote the story specifically for their altered history/horror anthology. But when they rejected it, I went to plan B. Plan B would probably net me more $, anyway, since I was only to get $20 flat from this publisher, and see no royalties at all.

So, Holy Devil has had new life breathed into it. Self-publishing is not easy. I had trouble with it. I had someone format it and when I couldn't even get the thing to up-load, or my photo for cover to go in, I had this same friend do it for me.

The difference in 20 or even 40 years ago, when I began writing, you had no choice. You were at the mercy of publishers and agents. If your work didn't hit them like a cold title wave, which ever way their whims took them at that moment, then too bad.

Now, you can do it yourself. Should you? I think for the most part that there are good books and short stories out there. But hopefully the author has learned how to plot their story and write. Editing is a must.

I do have a publisher for my Sabrina Strong Series. He was the first publisher who believed in my writing. As a micro publisher, he has done it right with the POD. He asks nothing up front. He publishes the book in both formats. Why do all these others ask for money, when they can get their cut the same way as my publisher does? I have no idea. Further more I don't have to format my work. They do that and find a wonderful cover for it.

The new age in publishing. It's the best of both worlds, as far as I'm concerned.

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