Please welcome our guest – Karen Frisch author of Murder Most Civil.
A couple of my writer friends are facing a major decision. After querying editors and agents for the past few years, they’ve come up empty-handed. Yet they aren’t letting that discourage them.
Rather than continuing on the same path, they have options that didn’t exist a decade ago. For writers, this can be the best of times or the worst. E-publishing is a career-changing decision, and success sometimes depends less on perspective than on action. Some e-pubbed authors are doing very well financially. The question is not only important but timely. Hindsight is worthless if you miss the boat after it’s sailed.
For established writers, it’s less of a dilemma. But for writers who are at the crossroads of their careers, to be or not to be e-published is the question.It’s a tale of two streams of thought. The question for writers is whether it’s nobler to follow the traditional route, getting enough novels under their belt until their writing isstrong enough to earn them an editor and possibly an agent, or to post their novel online, hoping to draw both attention and customers.
For those willing to take a risk, e-publishing is increasingly becoming a popular alternative for writers who have been unable to secure a traditional publisher. Amanda Hocking’s experience proves that persistence and initiative pays off. After she self-published her novel on Amazon and offered it for far less than a print publisher could have, her successful venture led to a major contract with St. Martin’s at auction.
She certainly isn’t the only author to have had a profitable experience with online publishing. But it’s no guarantee of sales, easy or otherwise. Writers must be willing to promote their e-books more vigorously than a traditional publisher would. Over time it’s the quality of the writing combined with exposure that often determines an author’s success.
A disadvantage of online publishing is that the author is responsible for all aspects of publication. Unlike a traditional publishing house that provides an editor, proofreader, and cover artist, the writer must also either play these roles or find someone else to do it. And if Smashwords isn’t sufficient, it’s then on to reformatting for Kindle and/or the Nook.
If you’re a prepublished author, you might need to do some soul-searching as to what motivates you. Ask yourself whether your ultimate goal is to make money or to find validation through acceptance by a respected publisher. Keep in mind that the two aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive. Before a writer makes any decision, it’s better to let some time go by after finishing a manuscript before taking a hard, objective look at it to see if it can be improved and resubmitted elsewhere.
All writers must follow the path of their choice and decide their own future. If you do your research, you might be pleasantly surprised at the results. To paraphrase the literary masters yet again, they might even meet your greatest expectations.
Karen Frisch is the author of Lady Delphinia’s Deception, a Regency romance published by ImaJinn, and Murder Most Civil, a Victorian mystery published by Mainly Murder Press. Her historical romance What’s in a Name will be released by Avalon in December. Visit her website at http://KarenFrisch.webs.com, or write her at KarenFrisch7@gmail.com.
Thanks for being here, Karen.
April Dawn, Author of Crushing Desire and Bound by Love.