Everybody in the writing community is talking about it. Even if they don't want to talk about it, they're talking about how they don't want to hear about it anymore. Seems like all the other kids are doing it and surely every writer out there has wondered if maybe they should try it.
Yeah, you know what I'm talking about. (Because you read the blog post title!) Self-publishing.
Everybody seems to have an opinion. It's the salvation of writers! It's the death of publishing! People are making millions. People are making less than $500 and they're fools to expect more. Self-publishing allows unprecedented freedom. The market is being swamped with crap writing.
How to know what's true?
Thing is, it's all true. Some authors are making a lot of money. (Though, since it's all self-declared, it can be difficult to know if they're being entirely accurate, especially the ones wanting desperately to prove something.) Other authors are demonstrably not making much money at all. There's a lot of poorly conceived, poorly executed, and poorly edited books hitting the market. Sometimes those writers simply don't know better. Often they don't care and are just hopeful of getting lucky.
A lot of authors are self-publishing their back lists. I'm going to be one of them.
(A back list, for thems what don't know, are the books that have been previously published and are now out of print, for whatever reason.)
See, when I sold Petals and Thorns to Loose Id, it was for a two-year contract. Something I totally did not remember, which is irresponsible of me. Fortunately they are a publishing house with excellent integrity and they emailed me to inform me the two years would be up in July. They said they'd like to renew the contract or I could take my rights back on the book. I mention this integrity because I hear so many stories about publishing houses that don't acknowledge rights reversion requests. Even when the author is well within her legal, contractual rights, it can take a year or more to get the rights back. Some houses notably never respond to these requests and continue to sell the authors' books with no right to do so.
At any rate, I decided to dip my toe in the self-publishing pool and publish Petals and Thorns on my own. The advantage here is the book has already been professionally edited and has a proven track record. All I had to do was invest in a new cover (above - yay!) because the publishing house retains the rights to the cover they supplied.
By self-publishing, I will receive a greater percentage of each sale. Sadly, when Loose Id pulls their version, I will lose all of my reviews and rankings on the reseller sites like Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and All Romance E-Books. Goodreads, however, retains that record.
So! I didn't think I would be self-publishing so soon (or ever, really), but I'm seizing the opportunity.
That means I vote Wheeeeee!