Self Publishing : Trash or Treasure

So the new age of writers, readers and self publishers is upon us all. With so many modern technologies to help us achieve our goals in life, mixed with a little savvy know how and anyone can self publish their own work whether it be a novel or to a blog site like this. I have seen posts and heard people slate the new age way of working “All this self publishing means there is so much trash on the market now, any Tom, Dick and Harry can write a book and publish it without so much as a thought to the people that will pick it up and read it” But is it really all that bad?

In my opinion and like the old saying goes ‘Someone’s trash is someone else’s treasure’, a certain Tom, Dick or Harry might have spent years, months and weeks at a time writing their chosen story, they might see it as the best thing since life’s bred and then to be turned down or rejected by a literary agent or a publisher could be a big blow but who are we to judge their work if they love it so, shouldn’t we let them publish it to the world? So where do you turn after rejection? Well to the self publishing route of course. Yes there might be hundreds of books that are classed as similar to your own but this would have been your own masterpiece that you want to see in print and especially if you like to write for love not money then this way could be a great way to get your work seen.

So should we be progressing away from the more traditional route of publishing? I think yes, I could be slightly biased towards this seen as this is what I do for my own work, so far I have self published two novels using the ever more popular Createspace.com which is part of Amazon. Why? Because I felt my stories were worth reading, I had sent the usual cover note along with a synopsis of my book to a few agents only to be told that they were too busy, it’s not what they were looking for or just plain no. Maybe you might say I should have given up and thought oh maybe its not worth reading, maybe it shouldn’t be part of the book world, just keep it for my own devices but…J.K Rowling’s ‘Harry Potter’ series had their fair share of rejections and now look its a multi million pound franchise. Yes I am living in this reality and I know that my book might not necessarily make me millions or take off to that extent but it should be out there for people to read if they want to. So I took to the self publishing way of things which is actually quite easy, it means the words I have written down and poured my whole soul into can stay on the page and not be ripped apart by people who think certain things shouldn’t be included, I can make and design my own front cover to how I want it to look, I can use whichever font I desire and I can also determine the price and which ways to distribute it. It can work out to be a lot of work for you as all the main advertising and marketing must be done by yourself but if your willing to put in the time, money and sell part of your soul to social media it can be done.

Although I do really like the self publishing way of things I’m not bashing the old fashioned route completely, yes I can have complete control over my work the self publishing way but you have to be a little savvy with a computer to get your book out that way and if your not the traditional way still might be best for you. Yes they can tell you to edit whole pages and chapters out of your book and yes they might want to design the cover the way they want but they have the resources to market it for mass production. They also have editors that know some things might need to be taken out of a book to make it sound better or flow easier but maybe to you those things might have been a big part of the story. They also have the money to buy in bulk the copies to dispatch to retailers, sellers and libraries, where as when you do it alone you have to make sure you do all the things that the big publishing house would have done for you. For example sending the correct amount of books to the six big libraries around the country, I was lucky enough to have brought the book ‘Writers and artists yearbook’ which explained this to me but only after reading it in depth, in the U.K you can send five to an agent in Edinburgh who will distribute the copies to the right places, ‘The Agency for the legal deposit libraries’ and another one to, ‘The British Library’ which also require a copy. When you are all new to this these things can go unnoticed until you get a letter requesting the copies and even then you must have the money to order them and then send them on which can become costly and confusing but if you can grasp it and have a few funds to do it then whoop let’s go ahead.

I guess it all depends on the type of writer or person you are and whether you want full control over your work or not but in my view self publishing is a great new way for writers to get their work out there and noticed. Just look at ’50 shades of grey’ which was firstly self published then taken on by a publishing house once they saw how it was taking off. It might have once just been just a fan fiction piece but look at the success it has had and yes to many it might be the worst written book on the planet but people still went out and brought it, to the point where they wanted a film of it. There are also the authors that have used the traditional route that are now turning to the self publishing way. Everyone is different and yes some people will find some of the books of the self publishing world trashy or rubbish but there will always be someone out there who will like it or love it. What do you guys think yay or nay?

As I like to say, ‘Write to love, love to read’.

If you like you can always check out my self published books on Amazon and Createspace, ‘The Keeper of the Key’ and ‘Alone’ and see what you think, Trash or Treasure? 😉

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