11 Replies Latest reply on Jun 10, 2012 7:38 PM by flyingtoastr

    Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof

    keriflur

      For anyone interested in the self-pub world or the self-pub v. trad pub debate:

       

      This is a great article by (both trad-pubbed and self-pubbed) author Chuck Wendig on the self-pub situation.  It's a good read, but where things get really interesting is in the comments, which cover everything from quality issues in the self-pub world to the idea that trad pubs are evil, to the author versus blogger controversies.

       

      http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2012/05/30/self-publishing-and-the-burden-of-proof/

        • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof
          Thanks for the link.
          • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof
            patgolfneb

            So who carries, or who out there is a likely to carry the mantel for self publishing? The movies have sundance. Cable TV created its own awards. Music has publications, both print and online promoting indie music. 

             

            Right now there are some bloggers, reviewers, who may include self published books in their best of the year lists. Creation of awards for the self published by someone like Goodreads would seem to be a good start. If self publishing continues to grow it will happen.

              • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof
                keriflur

                I think Goodreads has self-pub best-of lists.  At the very least, they're democratic in the sense that readers vote on everything, so any book, whether trad or self-pubbed, can appear on any best-of list.

                 

                One of the commenters suggested a "board" that would approve books.  I had this idea also, but there has to be enough faith in the board to make it work.

                 

                Another commenter suggested making MFA degrees a point of entry, but considering the number of MFA grads that can't get their work pubbed, and the number of non-MFA grads that are phenomonal writers, I don't see this as a very good standard.  And it's redonkulously expensive, limiting the market only to those with means (and as we all know, having $$ doesn't automatically make someone a good writer).

                  • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof

                    Seems kind of ironic that there are a number of different awards out there for best unpublished novel doesn't it?

                      • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof
                        keriflur

                        Romance Writers of America has fairly prestigous award for the best self-published romance novel.

                         

                        As far as awards for unpubbed work - an author could always submit their book to those contests before self-pubbing.  I, for one, would be much more likely to read a self-pubbed book that had won an award prior to publication than one that had not.

                         

                        Also, IMO one of the big problems with the self-pub market right now is the rush to publication.  It might behoove self-pubbers to to enter their books in these contests, particularly the ones that provide critique feedback, (in addition to hiring a quality editor and using beta readers and critique groups), before putting them out on the market.

                          • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof

                            "Prestigious" and "romance novel" should never be found in the same sentence.

                            • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof
                              In indie forums, there are always questions about how to correct mistakes after the book is published. I did put in a picture in each of the two books I had self pubbed. No one had bought them yet and so it was okay. The books were okay without the pictures, but I wanted them in there. The problem comes in when people have bought a book and then the Indie corrects it. The customer would have to buy the new version. Traditional published books have also had problems with formatting mistakes. Customers can read the sample and see if they are interested in the book. There is also a return policy. I don't know what that is here at B&N.
                                • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof

                                  Strayer wrote:
                                  Customers can read the sample and see if they are interested in the book. There is also a return policy. I don't know what that is here at B&N.

                                  B&N's return policy on ebooks is no returns. From the Help Desk:

                                   

                                  "We are unable to accept returns for NOOK Books, magazines, downloadable PDFs for SparkNotes products, gift cards, and shrink-wrapped items that have been opened. Please note: Once purchased, NOOK Books cannot be refunded."

                                   

                                  Some of the competitors (***cough*** Amazon ***cough***) are much more liberal.

                                    • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof
                                      MacMcK1957
                                      I have been unable to figure out how one "returns" an e-book. How could the seller verify that you haven't made a backup copy? Perhaps Amazon has something in their Kindle software to do a search-and-destroy on any kept copies of a book you returned?
                                        • Re: Self-Publishing and the Burden of Proof

                                          MacMcK1957 wrote:
                                          I have been unable to figure out how one "returns" an e-book. How could the seller verify that you haven't made a backup copy? Perhaps Amazon has something in their Kindle software to do a search-and-destroy on any kept copies of a book you returned?

                                          It must be something like that. From Kindle Return Policies:

                                           

                                          "Books you purchase from the Kindle Store are eligible for return and refund if we receive your request within seven days of the date of purchase. Once a refund is issued, you'll no longer have access to the book. To request a refund and return, visit Manage Your Kindle, click the actions tab for the title you'd like to return, and select 'Return for refund.'"

                                           

                                          Or maybe they just mean you won't be able to download it any more.