Authors Gone Wild

You know I had to come back. Especially when such great industry news is swirling. First bestselling author Barry Eisler turns down a $500,000 advance to self publish. (It’s long post so take your time)

Then self publishing phemon Amanda Hocking is looking for a NY publisher (and there are talks of a million dollars).

Has the publishing world gone mad? No. I think authors are waking up to options.

However, guess who I’m a little worried about…Amanda Hocking. Why? Because I’m afraid she might be disappointed. If she’s thinking like a publisher, no problem. She’ll understand that it’s a bottom line business and that if her work doesn’t perform the way the publisher expects it to they’ll drop her and pretend she never existed. Nothing personal.

But if she thinks like a publisher (with a savvy lawyer on the side) she’ll level the playing field somewhat (and the percentage split). She’ll know that ‘getting more time to write’ is a dream we all have both indie and traditional. it’s amazing how if you’re time isn’t filled with one thing, it’s filled with another and publishers demand more from authors than ever before. But it can work, if she knows what she’s getting into and I truly wish her the best. I wish them both the best.

As you know indie publishing is nothing new to me. I started doing it before it became somewhat fashionable. And one thing I saw was how many indie published authors who got traditional deals eventually went back to indie publishing. Not a lot, but an interesting number that made it clear that traditional publishing isn’t the great security blanket or golden ticket everyone wants to think it is.

Dean Wesley Smith writes a great article about The Myth of Security in both indie and traditional publishing. Please note that he’s not against either. Like myself he balances the two in his writing career. However, it’s important to know the pros and cons of both tracks and realize–there’s no guarantee.

Except one– if you know what the publishing business is about (with all its insanity), you can have blast!

I truly believe it’s a great time to be a fiction writer.

A smart fiction writer.

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