Sunday, March 20, 2011

AUTHORS, Why INDIE and not the TRADITIONAL route in putting your book out?


 As a new author preparing to release my first novel under my own imprint, I decided on the Indie route clearly to maintain control of my own vision. Honestly, I initially entertained the traditional route by shopping my manuscript but that quickly dwindled after realizing how it just wouldn't work in my favor. For one, the lack of control, royalty splits and input clearly were points that didn't interest me at all. As talented self-pub authors are growing in swarms, I'm sure everyone has a reason behind their decision ........... WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO REMAIN "INDIE" AND NOT GO "TRADITIONAL"? 


  1. I shopped a manuscript twenty or so years ago and it was not a fun experience. I'd rather put the decision-making in the hands of the readers.

  2. For me it's a way to "test the waters". I figure if I put something out there and it gains even a small following then it's likely something a publisher/agent would be interested in getting behind and they can help me extend my reach.

  3. I'm actually going in the opposite direction. I was with an independent publisher for almost ten years; and while the experience was positive, four novels, an extremely successful promotion on Amazon, pursuing reviews (both online and in print), podcasting, and creative control (to a point) never got me beyond the hurtle of distribution. I simply could not get my book into stores, and indie book sellers tended to be harder to work with than larger chains.

    That being said, my NY publisher — Harper Voyager (a division of Harper Collins) — has been fantastic, working with me and my writing partner on the cover look, promotions, marketing ideas, and collecting reviews. My publisher has also secured several overseas releases as well. Many of the lessons I learned being with an indie publisher and funding many of my own promotions and PR have been applied to this title, and the promotions people at Harper Voyager are thrilled with what we have planned together; so this experience has been nothing but positive.

    Now we gear up for the release of the book, and see if it finds an audience; and that is what both the publisher and I are striving for: selling the book, and getting people to talk about it.

  4. After perusing two contracts from publishers and looking at the pitfalls of publishers trying to own my rights without paying for them, the diminishing advances, the ridiculously low percentage on e-book royalties, I decided to go another route.

    With the big chain bookstores barely surviving and the massive push of e-books to devices of all sorts, the coveted distribution mechanism of the publishers is no longer a requirement for making money off your work or for promotional consideration.

    I'm happy to be small-time, so long as I own my work and I decide how it's going to be sold and for what price. If a larger publisher were to offer to pick my work, I'd listen, but I don't imagine they would be happy unless they owned my digital rights--something I'm not giving up until they come to their senses about how to make them fair.

    Publishers need to work WITH their authors and not treat them like sweat shop scribblers. Until the partnership relationship returns, I'm not interested.

  5. I am actually doing both. Why limit myself? I have indie published my adult fiction and I have an agent shopping my YA novel to the traditional publishers. I wrote a blog post on this exact subject. Check it out if you want:
    I don't feel authors need to "take sides" when it comes to publishing. In this day and age writers have more opportunities than ever and we should box ourselves in.

  6. That should say "shouldn't box ourselves in". My bad!

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  8. Thank you all for the incredible comments..... @Jake I agree with not boxing yourself in.
    @Tee Congratulations and much blessings to you
    @Larry I agree.... it comes down to the readers decision.