I don’t want to ruffle feathers but, I have never had a desire for traditional publishing. I thought I “needed” to be traditionally published but I figured out quick that it wasn’t a requirement.
I understand that many authors have a goal of being traditionally published, a firm desire to get an agent and get picked up by a Random House or Macmillan, but I just never had that desire. When I first learned about the process, I wasn’t thrilled with the idea of seeking an agent, which I didn’t even know I had to, at first. I wasn’t crazy about the wait time and the many, many rejections involved with the process.
I am not afraid of rejection so stop right there. I know that not everyone will like my stories, I know I can improve, and I get rejections all the time any way. It’s called reviews. Lol.
More specifically, I have never wanted traditional publishing for the following reasons:
I want to work for myself
Having your book published traditionally puts you in a contract with a company, or even multiple companies. They are basically your boss, own your book and can sometimes have the last say in how your book is presented. I don’t want that.
I want FULL creative control
The stories of agents and publishers making authors change their work and suggesting things that are way outside of the authors scope and comfort zone – literally terrify me. I understand they know the market, but I don’t want to conform to the industry in order to be successful. I want to find my genuine target market, not because I shaped my book to reach that market, but because my book is genuinely loved by that market.
I can’t tell you how many board room meetings I would upset…
I want instant gratification
I’m not going to lie, I don’t want to wait to get an agent and then them get my book to a publisher. In this day and age, there is literally no reason for me to have to wait through that process. It’s entirely a choice.
So, what am I doing instead?
My first two books are released with a subsidiary publisher. My mentor operates the company and as I was starting to get into writing and join the writers’ community, she saw talent in me and we struck up a deal for two books. I didn’t know what subsidiary publishing was at first but once I figured out how the process worked, I was okay with the system.
Being a business minded individual, I told her pretty early on that I wanted to learn the way to publish my own books. I was in a sea of self-published authors, this was back in 2014, so although I didn’t want my book to be as shabby (and shitty) as theirs, I did want to be independent.
I wanted to self-publish at first but, again, being business minded, I had the feeling that readers may be a bit judgmental after the shitty sea I noticed in 2014… I saw the wave of self-published authors and I started judging the quality of their work. I started to see a firm difference between self-pub and traditional, but then I noticed that not everyone was self-published. More people I knew were being published by smaller, non-traditional companies.
Why Indie Publishing?
I want to open a small independent press. Check that, I am opening a small independent press. We have already started preparing for a July release of my third title which is already written and then a New Year’s release of my fourth title. This might be ambitious but we’re gonna try!
Indie gives me a chance to operate a business, be professional and get my work published completely on my terms. This fulfills all my needs as an artist and business woman.
Also, I eventually want our company to give others an opportunity to be published, but this is NOT before a grueling learning process for myself…
I know, I know, this could all be bullshit. I could find a agent who loves my work and could find me a publisher who wants little to no changes made to my manuscript, but for me, I don’t wanna take the chance, and I’m allowed to feel that way.
All and all, I think it’s MOST important for you as an author to know what you want and make that happen. It’s not a battle between which release style is right or wrong, but what makes you happy and feel accomplished.
Whichever way you are going, make sure you do your best work, do not give up and stay humble. Success comes in many forms. Get it how you want it!
Thank you for reading.
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